Tuesday, July 26, 2011
Why I am using Google+
In the past week, nothing has changed about my life. I still make my own RPGs in my spare time. I remain dedicated to an open design philosophy, my games remain free, and I still have a desire for an internet platform that allows me to show periodic insights into my work to others. I am still witty, argumentative, and I still enjoy commenting on other people's work and/or opinions. I remain pretty much exclusively interested in creative people, regardless of field but especially in relation to RPGs.
Nothing about me has changed.
However, I feel like the internet has changed. Google has changed. And this change has been good for me. It allows me to acheive what I want in a more simple and easy way than my primary platform thus far: my blog.
Google+ allows me to accomplish all the things listed above better.
Here are the differences I have noticed thus far:
1. The volume of potential interactions has increased by an exponential factor. In the past week, after only a few hours of actual usage, I already have more people who have added me to their circles than are following me on Blogger after over a year of running that blog.
2. Commenting is extraordinarily streamlined compared to the blog platform. Spam basically can't work because you would need a legitimate account on Google+ to do it. So I can just click in a box, type, and click post. No verification, no bullshit. There is also a great notification system for tracking the responses that occur later after you make your comment.
3. Circles allow me to control the distribution of my work. I can choose to release something to only people I choose. The only comparable feature on Blogger is to make the entire blog private. For the most part, I don't want people I know in real life to read the stuff I post. I don't talk to them about this stuff, they don't care. RPGs are a separate world for me. Sometimes I would even prefer my actual gaming group not read my online work because their presence prevents me from posting material that I might end up GMing with them. It would spoil surprises for them. Google+ lets me build my own world with my own access standards.
4. The platform blends the speed and concise nature of Twitter with the ability to make much more substantial posts from time to time (like this one). It also has much better video and image support.
5. There is a notification of when someone mentions you, unlike on Blogger where trackbacks don't work and you basically have to look at your incoming traffic feed.
The big drawback that I see is the lack of a clear metric for how many people are viewing your stuff. However, commenting is much more frequent for reasons I outline above.
For these reasons, I am going to be kinda shifting to have Google+ as my primary platform of conversation and blogger as my backup for big posts, file support, and other functions only well served by a dedicated page.
Anyone else feel this way but me?