Social Media - Evolution On Two Ends

The hype around social media does not fade, at least not since Google launched its new "Plus" -experience.

I have to say I didn´t thought it was that worth of a hype, I skipped "Buzz" and "Google-Wave" - but this time it smelled like a different story.
After playing a while and getting the hang of it, it feels natural to use. Since I use gmail from the web its even natural to check in to G+ instead of facebook because it sits there, all the time.

Here a more visual approach to show the use for G+ :
Sure the first thing to decide is if you give in to the "real name policy" of google, I´m used to it, so no problem for me, I run a business and its important to show up as a real person, not just as a fictional character. And I assume google is trying to leave gamers and spammer out of their networks to increase productivity and fight procrastination. To be honest there are enough platforms for this, everyone whining about this real name policy hasn´t understand what G+ is about.

Here´s a great example of productivity, google tools and the network in action: A plain artist listing table, which grows every minute: (click here to see the G+ post) Share and participate to find other artists!

My impression so far is that Google+ offers the productivity and usefulness of twitter, combined with a professional ambition of LinkedIn and the social connectivity of facebook in one place.

I think we are a lucky generation to experience social media, the sunny side of globalization.
When talking about this phenomenon, people not familiar with that topic shrug and feel like being left outside the field. I try to bring a comparison on the table that changes the perception for most people easily.

Lets go back in history for this:
  • We first learned - and still do that in school - through books about different countries and events that changed the history.
  • Later when the media stations controlled the Television as tool to bring their news to the masses, we learned that things happened in the world that changed our state, right then and there.
  • Today we have the ability to get first-hand information about people from Iraq, politicians, or our favorite artists and what they really think about this or that.
This is plain awesome, but with such a pool of possibilities, it happens that we feel lost.

Whom to trust and whom to follow is a question, not a lifestyle.

People might ask now, why is there a need for another social network and yet another and yet another?
I´d say simply because there are always other people. And the same people do not share the same stuff on all networks.

When I first started to get my feet on the ground over at myspace, it felt good to use all the css hacks to create a stunning profile page, but does it help me to build and maintain trustful relationships or to get business at all? No.

Then there was twitter, it changed a lot - I learned to put thoughts into 140 characters that means more than 10 sentences. It also helped me to find engaging people to keep business motivating, some trustful relationships were built and existing ones were maintained.

Facebook was hard to come by at the first time, it took me a while to get through all the settings and terms of services, but finally I managed to separate business from personal space, a thing I simply forgot to do on myspace and also maintained successfully personal and business relationships.

This is an evolution and one where not only the developers of these sites have to learn, also the users have to get into the matter as well and learn to use the given tools properly. I think G+ is in this regard what OSX is for the MAC. Its not all about customization, its about usability, interaction and ease of use.

If there is one thing to say about the social media platforms and how users can be divided, there might be one simple answer: There are only two different kind of entities - active and passive.
These two types of people are always around us, those who do something and those who just enjoy the show.

It only depends which type of persons you want to have in your circles and what opportunities you want to gain. My conclusion so far is that G+ is for the active!
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Oliver aka Fantasio is a creative blogger who likes to share his insights about art, marketing and social media. Follow Fantasio on twitter or facebook


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