For some time now, Google+ has been a hot topic in social media news – just maybe not for the reasons that its developers had hoped. It seems as though the success, or lack thereof, of Google+ has everyone on the edge of their seats, waiting to see what happens next. Is Google+ dying? Is it already dead? What’s the deal with this whole Google Photos thing? These are just a few of the questions circling around as of late, and we are dying to hash it out with you guys. What’s happening to Google+?

First Mistakes First

Some say that the demise of Google+ started in the very beginning in their efforts to ‘out-Facebook,’ Facebook. I just had a vision of Facebook’s, Mark Zuckerberg, singing and dancing to MC Hammer’s, Can’t Touch This, in a nana-nana-boo-boo kind of way. Entertaining, yes - but let’s be honest, Facebook actually is pretty untouchable. Since Facebook, the only other social platforms that have been widely successful have gone in a completely different direction, becoming their own unique platform. Google+ made some critical mistakes straight out of the gate –

·         Forcing Gmail and Hangouts users to be Google+ users

·         A very blurry line between what was private and not private on Google+

·         Photos taken by Android users showing up in their Google+ photo stream without their knowledge – yikes.

Some may say that Google+ has learned from these mistakes and is well on its way to a redesigned comeback, while others are still anticipating Google going in for the final kill, especially since the launch of Google Photos last month.

What’s the deal with Google Photos?

Google Photos was the core of Google+ for a long time, so everyone was surprised to find out that Google Photos was being stripped from the Google+ platform and becoming a platform all its own. Despite its developers insisting otherwise, many saw this as yet another clue pointing towards the inevitable death of Google+. However, Google+ executives have said that the two services {Google+ and Google Photos} weren’t syncing, stating that Google Photos is for organization and storage, while Google+ is mainly for photo sharing.

A New Direction for Google+

Out with the old and in with the new – Google+ is making some changes that it hopes will redefine the platform and make up for lost time.

»     For starters, they decided to stop force feeding Google+ identities on everyone who has a Gmail account – thank goodness, right? I know my grandmother is relieved – I can hear her now, “I knew I never should’ve signed up for those emails. That Google squared or whatever it was called is probably sending information to the government. All cause nobody wants to pick up the phone anymore.” Grandma, it’s Google plus and for the hundredth time, the government isn’t out to get you. That’s a blog post all its own.

»     Back to our point, Google+ has also added a new feature called Collections, which is similar to Pinterest bulletin boards. The Collections feature was added in May and operates so that posts are grouped by topics. Google+ users can choose to follow certain topics, which will allow them to see all posts made under that category or topic. This allows users to connect with very specific audiences, which does tend to draw people in.

The folks at Google+ are certainly shaking things up, and there are a lot of mixed reviews out there regarding the sustainability of this platform, but only time will tell.

So, Is Google+ Really Dying?

As a social media platform, compared to Facebook, Twitter, etc. – some would say yes, definitely. However, it seems that there is still a chance for Google+ to evolve into something entirely its own, and to actually thrive in its own unique way. Developers are now saying that Google+ is becoming a place where users can go to simply connect with others around a shared interest or passion. In a world where people are wanting their voices to be heard more than ever and are becoming more outwardly passionate about important issues, Google+ may have gotten it right this time. Who knows? We certainly can’t predict the future. Consider us the Google+ cheerleaders, though – always thinking positive and sticking out those extra innings for our team. It’s not over ‘til the fat lady sings, or in this case, the executives at Google decide to go in for the final kill. 

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