I deleted my Google Plus account yesterday. Mostly because I didn’t see a place for it within my current communication landscape. I’m sure there are folks who will say that this does not matter, because it’s there and we should use it. But I view distribution platforms as extensions of my personal presence online. Every time someone goes to LinkedIn or Facebook (ha ha, you can’t) or Twitter to find out what I’m riffing on, it’s just one more place that I’m less likely to show them what I want them to see.
What do I mean? Well, it’s not an issue so much right now. But when you’re actively on the market and want people to discover the talents that make you interesting or worth knowing, it can be very difficult to get that picture from the constraints imposed by social networking sites. Despite my ubiquity online, I’ve always been very hesitant to share casually without really knowing my audience. On some level, I don’t really care. But I can’t deny that it plays a part in my calculus at times and makes it hard for me to know how I want to communicate.
So as I thought more about G+ and what I was doing with it, I realized that there existed a true failure to really launch. I’m sure that if I dove in more readily, there would be opportunities for growth and perhaps a wellspring of interestingness to be discovered. But the truth is, that all takes time. And I’m not entirely convinced that expending lots of energy merely cultivating networks in the off-chance that someone, somewhere might someday be useful — seems fine for folks who are wired in that way. But that’s not me.
There are things about it that I liked. I thought it was great that privacy settings were flexible. Circles were nice enough, though onerous in their own way — except, it was new so there were less folks to add — and I thought the fact that there is so much less noise than Twitter is a huge advantage. And lots of interesting people I didn’t follow on Twitter were there actively sharing.
I do my best work face to face. You don’t really understand what I’m about until you see me in action. Can I articulate what I translate into when it matters? You betcha. But I think for many people, it’s a lot better to spend your time living and thriving within the confines of what you do well; rather than looking around at the follow me economies of scale online and wonder how to get involved in the action.
It’s a personal choice and I decided to put the eject button.