July 14, 2011

Facebook, No...Google+, Yes Please

I think the last straw for me at Facebook was discovering that if I opt out of their automatically linking all my "likes," such as bands, TV shows, etc., my "likes" basically disappear from my Facebook page. It's just the latest intrusive attempt to force me to wade through more and more crap to discover what I really want and need to know...how are my actual friends, family, and acquaintances doing, and what are they up to?

My dislike really began when Facebook removed the personalization aspect of my page, forcing me to go into my left gutter to access third party apps. Then they removed the tabs, so even if I wanted to share my FB friend web with people, I couldn't. Hell, at this point even I can't find it...or my world map of all the places I've been, or particular music I want to share, or anything that I'm guessing doesn't provide FB with a way to make money off of me.

Yes, I can go in and individually shut off the No Doubt updates, along with those from Mad Men, Big Bang Theory, Game of Thrones, James Taylor, and so on. But why should I have to do that, one by one, for each "like?" If FB is going to allow intrusion, shouldn't I be asked to allow it on the front end, not disallow it, individually, for each intrusion I never asked for?

Wow...I don't think I've ever ended so many sentences, let alone paragraphs, with prepositions!

At this point I check FB mail, wish happy birthday, and then get the hell off of Facebook. Most of my posting is done from another locale; links on EW.com, the NYT, my blog, H&H, direct to Facebook without my actually being there. I'm incredibly happy now that Google+ has shown up; my plan is to set up the kind of circles I wish I could on FB...for friends, family, work, acquaintances, politics...and limit who is forced to endure any particular update from me. Why force Diana, a died-in-the-wool conservative, to read my endless NYT links about things that get my progressive dander up? Why post an update about the Border's bankruptcy to all my followers when only those involved in some way with publishing or bookselling give a crap? And why post a link to an article I've written for H&H to family who have no interest in romance or urban fantasy novels?

I've been extending invitations to Google+ to all who ask...all I need is an email address...with the understanding that unless I actually know you in some substantive way, circle joining will not follow. I understand there are burps along the way; it took two invites to two addresses each for my husband and daughter to join, and a friend of mine is having problems having Google+ accept her. But I love the idea of having a place to post without limiting to 140 characters—if this goes as I hope, my Twitter feed will soon cease to have anything personal and solely be about politics and publishing because I doubt Author A or Publisher B is interested in where I checked in for dinner last night using Foursquare— and I'll actually be able to see updates from the people I care about.

My daughter joined, but has no intention of actually using Google+ "until it catches on." My response? "It won't catch on unless people actually use it." I'm making a conscious effort to do that, downloading the Google+ app to my phone yesterday (I used it last night to pull Kevin into my "family" circle on the way to dinner).

If I can convince all family members to join, and can find some way to import birthdays into my calendar, I plan to leave Facebook altogether. Yes, I know you all play games there, but I quit cold turkey about a year ago when I realized what a time suck it was, so if you are growing more and more dissatisfied with Facebook, please consider the Google+ alternative. And if you need an invite, let me know.



Suzi McGowen said...

I totally need an invite! I also am...what's the word? "Disatisfied" with facebook. Google owns the rest of my life (I use Gmail, had a Droid phone, use Blogger), so I, for one, welcome my alien overlords!

touch.of.ink@gmail.com Please?

Laurie Gold said...

I just sent it, so be on the lookout!

Suzi McGowen said...

I got it! Thank you :) I'll check it out when I get home tonight :)