back to article Study: Users prefer Google+ over Facebook

Google+ is regularly derided as a "ghost town," but at least the spirits who haunt it are happy. According to a study from the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI), the Chocolate Factory's fledgling social network scores top marks in customer satisfaction, leaving Facebook far behind. According to ACSI's figures, Google …


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  1. theJML


    As much as I hear people complain about Timeline, I really don't think they can equate that directly with these results. A lot of other things have changed during the same time period (as often does in the online world of fast code iterations). I know personally, I like Timeline... but Facebook has been horrible with it's support, especially in the mobile arena. Which is almost inexcusable considering it's been announced multiple times as their focus and biggest area of potential growth.

    1. Fibbles

      Re: Timeline?

      I have to agree with you about their mobile support. Their mobile site at can be slow as hell at times due to the amount of cludgy scripts it uses. I'm beginning to suspect it's been deliberately designed that way in order to drive more people towards downloading the dedicated app.

      1. Andrew Jones 2

        Re: Timeline?

        I much prefer to use the full website as opposed to the dedicated as while the dedicated app might well look pretty, it's slow to use and completely impractical. For instance - 4 versions back - you could actually upload photos into a specific photo album (but only one at a time) - then they issued an update which now posts any photo to try to post straight to the "wall photos" of any group / page or your own wall. Makes adding photos to an album on a page you maintain or uploading your photos while on holiday impracticable.

      2. Richard Wharram

        Re: Timeline?

        If, by dedicated app, you mean the iPhone one then they seem to be doing a great job of forcing users away from it.

        I often have to re-load the notification window or comments sections 3 or 4 times before it will actually do anything. They just sit there with the modern hourglass-equivalent (spinning-arsehole icon?) until you get bored. Sometimes nothing works at all, even though a quick trip over to Safari shows that my 3G connection is working.

        Plenty of other people have the same problem but I've no idea if it's more prevalent on certain carriers and related to the way the encryption is handled or facebook traffic is 'shaped'. I'm on O2 (Giffgaff).

        The facebook app is a total chore to use. A plague on it!

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Timeline?

          I get the issues you describe above both on wifi and on 3G and I'm not with O2.

          Seems to be a problem with the app. The latest annoyance I've noticed is the message indicator will be randomly lit, but when I check the messages on the phone or on my desktop computer there is no new message. I close the app reload it from scratch and there's the message icon again.

          1. Nick Ryan Silver badge

            Re: Timeline?

            It's not just the iPhone app as well, I don't know anybody who's especially enamoured with the Android version either. Both do a multitude of annoying things, generally very slowly. In the same period of time you can load up the full desktop version, check whatever you need, post, edit or whatever takes your pick. It's a shame that it can be a pig to stop it going to the awful "mobile optimised" website.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Timeline?

          Apparently they are re-writing the iOS app in native code, rather than the mixture of native and HTML5 (the future?) it uses now. (According to )

    2. Test Man
      Thumb Down

      Re: Timeline?

      Both the iOS and Android apps, and the mobile webapp are beyond awful. Apart from the many bugs, it's the missing features that really annoy: like you can't set permissions accurately, can't share, etc.

      As for the main site itself, what really annoys me about it is the regressive features that seem to have crept in, like you can't create an empty album to put photos in (meaning you can't move photos out of one album into its own albums unless you fudge a workaround involving uploading a dummy pic), moving photos to other albums is now a chore and photos regularly disappear from albums.

      1. cs94njw

        Re: Timeline?

        The one thing I do regularly, have a peek at my friends profiles on the Android app, requires me to click on the top left hand corner, and scroll down *loads*. Accessing Friends profiles are considered less important than:




        Find Friends

        <Any groups I belong to>

        App Centre






        oh and here's Friends.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Users prefer Google+

    When surveyed about their preferences both users said it was great.

    1. Thorne

      Re: Users prefer Google+

      The problem is you have to have the users to get the users. What they need is things to get people in and using the system without talking to their friends.

      I think games are the way to get people in and then they'll link up and bring more people in. Build the social side once you have a user base.

      1. Spearchucker Jones

        Re: Users prefer Google+

        Not sure you just need people to get more people.

        For some crazy incomprehensible reason there are quite a number of companies that put their corp. mail into GMail, and that obviously comes with Google+. The company I work for does this, and they encourage employees to put of a Google+ profile, so I did.

        I'm really not sure what Google+ does, or why I should use it. The profile is there. Everyone I work with is in a circle. The stuff that comes up on the Google+ page is banal, irrelevant and has no bearing on what I do at work. Crazy.

        None of my friends have Google+ accounts.

        And I'm not even going to get started on the abject uselessness of Gmail, which won't even let you sort your inbox by sender. WFT?

        Google apps are, *in my experience*, an epic fail.

        1. Lord Voldemortgage


          "I'm not even going to get started on the abject uselessness of Gmail, which won't even let you sort your inbox by sender."

          Mad, isn't it?

          Being Google, they'd probably suggest using the search box but you can pull up a list of mail from a particular sender by hovering over the sender name in the inbox and selecting the emails link in the box that pops up.

          You can also set a rule to assign a label to mail from particular sources and then view by that label.

          It's not intuitive if you've come from traditional mail clients but GMail is pretty flexible.

        2. Ambivalous Crowboard

          Re: Sort by sender in gmail


          into the search box.

          You're welcome.

          PS: the 1990s called, they want their email management systems back.

          1. Buzzword

            Re: Sort by sender in gmail

            That's filter by sender, not sort by sender. Sometimes you have a brain freeze and you can't remember the exact name of the person you want to find, but you know they're in the alphabet near somebody else. It's an uncommon use case but it would be straightforward for Google to implemenent it. Personally I'm not bothered by its omission.

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Read that as..

            "Sort by gender in gmail"

            That would be really useful.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Read that as..

              Not sure about search by gender but you can use search (or filters) to classify your correspondents by stupidity.

              Just search on

              "Copy this to everyone you know"


              "you must see this"

        3. Ian Johnston Silver badge

          Re: Users prefer Google+

          And I'm not even going to get started on the abject uselessness of Gmail, which won't even let you sort your inbox by sender. WFT?

          The GMail app for Android will only allow pictures from your gallery to be attached, and no other files. How many programmers do Google employ?

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    hah hah

    Users complain about advertising on Facebook, but are too thick to realise that google will sell their most intimate personal data to the highest bidder.......

    1. Thorne

      Re: hah hah

      "Users complain about advertising on Facebook, but are too thick to realise that google will sell their most intimate personal data to the highest bidder......."

      And Facebook won't?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: hah hah

      Given recent revelations about Google's political influence in countries like the UK, I think Google has greater objectives than just selling personal data to the highest bidder...

      Think about it: they already track many of your communications, most of what you read online , your social connections and deliver personalised search rankings and the largest online advertising network. This is the stuff of dreams for any politician.

      The best part is the don't even need to actually give your personal details to anyone and pontentially get in big trouble if caught. They can offer the whole campaign package themselves.

      1. Another Justin

        Re: hah hah

        Well yeah, they would have to offer the campaign package themselves - passing details to a third party without consent is illegal in the UK.

  4. Jan Hargreaves


    Since when has Wikipedia been a social networking site???

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Wiki

      I thought it was a MMORPG.

      ; )

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: I thought it was a MMORPG.

        I'm a level 80 defender of Felicity Kendal's wikipedia page. None shall create a criticism section!

  5. Nick De Plume

    Sounds right

    Being a sucker on both Facebook and Google+, this kinda sounds right.

    The G+ is quite less hectic, less minutiae and more content. Even if less active.

    I think it may be the signal to noise thing.

    (but in the long chance G+ gets more "popular", things would change I guess. More noise, less meat)

    1. ZweiBlumen

      Re: Sounds right

      "I think it may be the signal to noise thing."

      Well, yes, if only you and your best mate are in your circle on G+ then there won't be much noise. My Facebook stream on the other is full of "spam" from friends of mine who are serial posters. I've had to turn off their updates. It's also full of spam from updates to groups I follow. Facebook need to come up with a better way of dealing with this. Unless I have missed something.

  6. John F***ing Stepp


    That reminds me, I forgot to post on Google + last month.

    (I saw a study that showed the average Gplus user posts about 3 minutes of content per month and have been working my ass off trying to beat that; and this, gentlemen and ladies, is why I like Google +.)

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Re: Gahh!

      The problem is with these surveys.

      1) many of them are financed by Facebook, and many were released just prior to the Facebbok IPO to boost their launch price.

      2) they don't consider private circles. about 70% of my posts are not public.

      So it's easy to be fooled by FUD. It seems you have.

  7. oldtaku Silver badge

    That's because there aren't nearly as many annoying prats on Google+ to poke you with self-absorbed updates.

    1. hodma727

      "That's because there aren't nearly as many annoying prats on Google+ to poke you with self-absorbed updates."

      The content on Facebook is mostly social updates, the content on Google+ is mostly self absorbed blathering about boring technical details that are of interest to a lot less people than the author thinks.

    2. SunnyFrimley

      Its not them. Its you.

      People who moan about the quality of updates they get on Facebook need to take a long hard look in the mirror, then go out and find some more interesting people to interact with, rather than automatically friending as many people as they can in the mistaken belief that it will make them look popular and turn them into somebody interesting.

      It won't.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    And who is behind the funding

    of this report?

    1. Ian Michael Gumby

      Re: And who is behind the funding

      It's irrelevant.

      "In addition," ACSI writes, "the Google+ social network is not inundated with the kind of advertising that seems to irritate many Facebook and other social media users."

      Google makes their money from the online advertising and search so they can afford to not force advertising down your throat. Facebook, LinkedIn, not so much.

      Also as the pool of users dramatically increases, the customer sat tends to fall.

  9. toadwarrior

    it is better

    I think google+ is infinitely better in every way but it does seem like no one really uses it so I can't be bother to log onto it.

    1. JDX Gold badge

      Re: it is better

      It can't be better in EVERY way then.

      1. Thorne

        Re: it is better

        Actually it can. The problem is it's a catch 22. You need users to get a user base and a user base to get users.

        You can have the greatest product in the world but if nobody is using it, it will fail. It's like the old VHS vrs Beta tapes. Beta was the better system but failed because more people used VHS.

        The key for G+ is to get users without requiring a user base, which means bringing people there for things other than social. Need things like games, news, specials, jokes, forums etc to get people in and get them use to logging in daily.

  10. Michael H.F. Wilkinson Silver badge

    They didn't even include Stargazer's Lounge and CloudyNights in the survey

    I'm miffed

  11. dotdavid
    Big Brother

    " the Chocolate Factory's fledgling social network scores top marks in customer satisfaction, leaving Facebook far behind"

    Wait, did they poll the users or the customers, because we all know they're different people...

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    To those in the know, Facebookers are known as Jeremy Kyle Rejects.

  13. jnewco81


    I'll tell you what's annoying about Facebook at the moment. The news feed is full of stupid chain pictures that friends have shared - such as a photograph of two puppies, accompanied by something like "Click like if you luvs dogs too, lolz"

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Obviously if you sign up and sit there waiting for someone to add you, it might seem like that.

    Anyone that thinks G+ is a ghostown is an idiot.

    You add yourself to some circles, or add friends to your own circles, create a celebrity circle of people or products you follow, create a local circle of people posting nearby (I think only the mobile app allows this, I could be wrong).

    I have a VERY full and varied feed on G+, but it's full of stuff I am interested in, and it's full of interesting people and conversation.

    For people I know, I prefer the pub to Facebook.

    1. Ian Johnston Silver badge
      Thumb Down

      Re: Ghosttown?

      ... create a celebrity circle of people or products you follow

      If I ever find myself "following a product" I'll drink drain cleaner.

      1. Lord Voldemortgage

        Re: Ghosttown?

        "If I ever find myself "following a product" I'll drink drain cleaner."

        If you enjoyed your Clog-B-Gon experience please like us on our Facebook page.

  15. Kristian Walsh Silver badge

    We asked 1000 Subaru drivers what they thought of cars...

    When you ask people who went out of their way to choose a product what they think of it, you're far more likely to get a positive response.

    The Google+ users might be randomly selected for this survey, but the entire pool of G+ users is more likely to be self-selected than Facebook's userbase is.

    Put it this way:

    Take a sample of 1,000 active G+ users, completely at random, call this G.

    Take a sample of 1,000 active Facebook users, completely at random, call it F.

    1. What percentage of G could be classed as employees of Google, or evangelists for the company's services (paid or otherwise)?

    2. What percentage of F could be similarly classed as Facebook employees, or evangelists for that company's services?

    I have never encountered a "Facebook fanboi" on the internet or in real life. Most attitudes to the service (mine included) are that it's like the phone company. Sure, it's annoying sometimes, but it's a means worth putting up with, when the end is being able to stay in touch with people you care about.

    No offence to Subaru drivers in the headline, by the way, but they're a famous example of an enthusiastic and vocal self-selected grouping, and one that tends to overperform in ownership surveys for this reason.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: We asked 1000 Subaru drivers what they thought of cars...

      While you make some valid points, I think you are too quick to discount why so many G+ users (and I'm neither an employee nor a paid endorser) are so enthusiastic. I was an early (non-student) adopter of Facebook in 2007, at a time when none of my real-life friends were yet onboard. I quit a couple of months ago, primarily due to a combination of family drama and the ever-encroaching loss of privacy.

      I'll confess to being a bit of a G+ evangelist, but there's usually a reason converts are the most zealous. G+ provides the privacy control I want via their Circles feature (links, comments and photos don't get shared with world et al. anytime someone comments on those posts). And there are thriving communities providing meaningful content on there.

      Yes, you see far fewer posts about what others have for breakfast, how much their jobs suck, and passive-agressive comments directed to "some people." But the loss of such essential information is a trivial sacrifice for what you gain.

  16. Ian Johnston Silver badge
    Thumb Down

    G+ may well be nicer than Facebook

    Just as OS/2 Warp was nicer than Windows 95.

  17. Maliciously Crafted Packet

    One very unhappy Google+ user

    Anyone seen Robert Scoble's Rant? -colourful language, nsfw-

    Whilst Im not quite so agitated I wish there was some way of controlling who adds you to their circles.

    Im getting deluged by too much "Mr Timeontheirhands is sharing with you on Google+" As such Im now redirecting all Google+ generated email to my junk folder.

  18. Boyd Crow

    I left Facebook - couldn't be happier

    The lack of advertising makes Google Plus superior in so many ways. Facebook's plans to penetrate into mobile with advertising is just silly. The screens are too small and, if you interrupt content for ads, - bye-bye. Google Plus does have a number of annoying, screen wasting "features" like "What's Hot" which are useless and cannot be turned off. However, it also doesn't have tons of apps pestering your friends and pretending to be you. Yep, I lost some "friends" but, you know, it was time.

  19. matt333

    Which has better jokes?

    Probably neither. With their definition of privacy being little more than a big question mark, online jokes lose too much perspective, too much work to bother with. Although it might be fun to mess with them, using your text for different ads and such, that sort of feels a little juvenile and probably best to just move on, throw in a Bill Murray movie, go out talk to real people and such.

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