"52.5 million accounts at risk, tens of people are worried"
Don't forget both people who are going to be really outraged about the closure being moved up.
Google says it will be speeding up the dismantling of its Google+ social network following the discovery of a new security bug that affected 52.5 million users. The Chocolate Factory maintains that it has no evidence that the vulnerability, which was found in the API for Google+, was ever actively exploited. According to …
" ... accelerate the sunsetting of consumer Google+ from August 2019 to April 2019 ..."
I'm just waiting for some government department to announce that, after a multi-year, multi-million pound consultation, they are moving all their services exclusively to Google+ from next April.
Is that "deliberately" introduced as an excuse to shut it down four months earlier?
I doubt they were doing too much work on it if it was on its' way out anyway. What a great idea if it's believed. "Hey, even though we were going to give you lots of time to get off this software we're desperate to dump, an unfortunate very recently introduced bug means that the plug must be pulled pronto".
They were probably tweaking the API so that they could either migrate people's data to somewhere else, or disentangle something else from this.
That's the sort of thing that is done in sunset periods.
In doing so, they probably realised that the whole thing is a mess and have just said "fuck it, just pull the plug and we'll deal with any fallout later"
Is that "deliberately" introduced as an excuse to shut it down four months earlier?
Why would they need an excuse? The user base waspitiful compared to competing services, and they will already be rapidly draining away to avoid a "disorderly exit" nest year. Google aren't under an contractual commitment, so they needn't worry about bringing the death sentence forward, and they have already reaped all the bad publicity of shutting down yet another failed venture (despite the fact that trying and risking failing is what businesses should do).
For any non-cash paid services I'd have thought in today's world there's no reason that they couldn't have announced closure with six months notice in the first place, after developing and publishing a couple of alternative "how to" different migration strategies for their existing users. Done properly they might even have been able to get the user base to opt for options, and transfer the data in a bulk sale to one of the competing platforms. The dopey Puritans over at Tumblr have just done the same thing, and missed an opportunity to package up and sell a big bundle of somewhere between 1-25 million users. Tumblr's decision is theirs to make (their platform, their rules), but to actually throw away millions of users rather than seek a different way of extracting value whilst still removing them from the user base - that's just daft..
That's what happens when you force your password policy on the creative team. "Your product name/RPG party/exec-level staff must include at least one character from class 'other'"
I think the last services with names that weren't completely meaningless were, uh, livejournal and adultfriendfinder? (Other blogging services and hookup sites are available.)
If they are so stupid(!) that they can't fix the API, they could remove it - it has absolutely nothing to do with the google+ service users see.
One of the plus (pun intended) points of google+ was that it wasn't full of third party app crap. Removing scraping bots will not affect user experience one jot.
"Removing scraping bots will not affect user experience one jot."
Yeah it will! It'll mean a few KB less of Important Consumer Data to be sold^C^C^C ...
Usage Insight! I mean usage insights to be analysed for specific learnings, process improvements and value adding for the end user...
(Ow. Think I sprained my bullsh*t generator...)
All businesses close things that don't make money.
Not all businesses treat individual units as separate businesses that have to stand up on their own. Some take a big strategic picture view of their entire business, and tolerate a loss in one area if it helps makes a positive long term contribution overall. Speaking entirely subjectively, and therefore possibly unfairly (apologies in advance) this is more commonplace outside of the USA...
Google shutting down Google+, and indeed the whole way they've handled its introduction and forced promotion, indicates that Google is now separate business units, pursuing mostly independent strategies. That's not good for their long term future. Their users don't want to have to treat Google as a bunch of disconnected businesses...
With Facebook rapidly becoming public enemy #1, and Google exiting the arena without a replacement too, one has to say that there's a good opportunity for someone else to butt in. Say a big company stood up a decent cross platform social media service, with an emphasis on not slurping data at all (so they'd need to be in another profitable business area already) and could promote it well enough, it might just get somewhere. If we all liked it, we'd all be liking them, a marketing manager's dream customer base.
Who could do that? MS?, Apple? Amazon? Oracle? OK that last one isn't serious...
Loads of us signed up because at one stage Google basically *required* you to do that to continue using your YouTube account.
This was obviously a blatant attempt to coerce people into using Google+, but as they found out, you can lead a horse to water, but you can't make it drink. (#) (Then again, maybe they were just interested in getting the number of claimed users up, regardless of whether the accounts were active or not).
Some time later, after an outcry, they relaxed this requirement (IIRC) and allowed you to supposedly decouple your YouTube account and the Google+ you didn't want in the first place. (##)
Later, they strongarmed businesses (like my employer) into signing up for Google+ to get control over our listings etc. Then, after its original incarnation as a Facebook rival had failed and they decided to shift Google+ into being a consumer-oriented Pinterest clone, they wasted even more of our time by forcing us off it again.
tl;dr - Google dicked about their users, and forced them to sign up for Google+ in an attempt to make it A Thing- and it still didn't work. Good riddance.
(#) "My" Google+ page contains nothing but a single post explaining that it's unused and exists solely for this reason.
(##) I tried this, but it's still not clear whether the accounts were completely decoupled and "my" Google+ account has my former YouTube account name. Whereas my YouTube account login still uses the associated email address rather then the original username. Meanwhile, my employer has a confusing mess of Google accounts that got worse when we signed up for G-Suite and couldn't combine the old accounts, but had to change their associated email addresses anyway.
I tried this, but it's still not clear whether the accounts were completely decoupled and "my" Google+ account has my former YouTube account name. Whereas my YouTube account login still uses the associated email address rather then the original username. Meanwhile, my employer has a confusing mess of Google accounts that got worse when we signed up for G-Suite and couldn't combine the old accounts, but had to change their associated email addresses anyway.
Indeed, my Youtube account seems to be tied to my google account (this became unavoidable eventually), and yet somehow restricted, I appear to have two accounts, but only one I can log into. A bit curious what the result of this will be, I'm expecting a third equally inaccessible to turn up.
Is that several local councils at risk then that insist it was a great idea to use their ShitSuite. Some such authorities also decided to use Google+. And also gave virtually no training so the default share option on documents was set to "Share with everyone" for quite a while.
The fun that could be had. And the data that can be stolen with no access to proper audits. Although the same can be done with 365 and OneDrive.
I'm an active user of G+... Have a few large social circles on there... We don't know where we are going.
Farcebook has been suggested, but it's very very unpopular... G+ is/was nice and clean. The phone client wasn't loaded with cruft, it did harvest all your contacts and eat you battery like FB. It didn't force adverts into your feed every 3 or 4 posts.
It really does make us look at Google in a very different light... Do no evil, but being a right dick is fine.
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