After yet another unwelcome “improvement” from Facebook, I decided to give Google+ a try. I must say that initially, I dreaded the thought of yet another profile to update and manage. My dread quickly turned to delight and amazement at the ease of user navigation and privacy control provided by the blissfully clean Google+ interface.
The never knowing what is or is not private, seems to me at least, to be a constant concern with Facebook. This lack of trust by its users is due in part by the always changing Facebook interface, not to mention the visibility changes imposed on Facebook user profiles and posts, intentional or otherwise.
Apparently, team Google was paying close attention.
I use a lot of Google products and though I am not a fan of all of them, most have easy to use navigation. Google+ is no exception. Google+ has easy to find (and fathom) user icons. The social structure is not unlike Facebook, it is just way more intuitive and easy to understand. Google+ uses circles to represent groups of people (remember Meet the Fockers “circle of trust?”). With Google+, there are circles of friends, family circles, acquaintances and so on. Of course you can make new circles too. Adding people to these groups is a breeze. You simply drag and drop your peeps into which ever circle (or circles) you want them to be included in.
Security settings are pretty straight forward too.
- Circle = your circles of friends, family and so on.
- Extended circles = Friends and Friends of friends
- Earth circle = Viewable by everyone
It is really all the same (as FB), but yet so different. The difference is that when cruising around on your Google+ pages and profile, you see the icons all over, instantly showing you how public or private each segment of your profile is. What’s more, you can instantly change what you don’t like. Didn’t notice that you have your email available to the world? Just click on that icon and change it.
Recently, Facebook did add an option as a drop-down where you can instantly change some settings in similar fashion, but the drop-down arrow is easy to overlook and frankly, after so many changes, I just don’t know that I trust Facebook anymore. And even with all the improvements to Facebook, digging around on Facebook seems like MORE WORK. Not that I don’t like to work, I just like to get paid to work.