The Future Of The Google+ Stream

We Have All Heard The Death Knell For Google+ Being Rung By Every Big Blog…

But here is the quick and easy solution to how to fix Google Plus: Put RSS Back In Our Google+ Stream!

Google+ artificial intelligence as HAL 9000...

We have all heard the “Search Without Search” Google is coming. OK, where is it?

We have heard the claims of artificial intelligence for years now. How Google can or will soon algorithmically display great new content for us to discover.

We all heard how filtering our social feeds help remove the noise, mostly from Robert Scoble and Facebook.

Well let me be the first to say “The Machines” are not doing their jobs. Not for me, at least.

And that means it’s time to go back to the old way of doing things.

It’s time to put what we see in our social feeds back in our hands. Not in the hands of who we follow and not in the hands of the algorithms that filter what our friends share.

After 7 Years Of Being “Social” It Has Failed Me!

Ever hear how content is king!

Well those days are over. We have turned into an incestuous “Good old boys club” that share to get re-shared and hawk silly gifs, Meems and content not because it is awesome news– But instead our sharing is comprised of content that is shared only because it will get re-shared and get traction.

Social overall has become irrelevant for me and my niche is simply not here on G+. By allowing me to add RSS feeds to G+? Well that could make it work for me again.

What About Search?

“If all you have is a hammer, every thing looks like a nail.

If all you have is search, then everything just looks like a question.”

-Anita Edge

Bottom line, search is great for answering questions. But what do we do when we find a great blog?

The days of Google+ badges and Like us on Facebook widgets are gone. I even finally took all of my Google+ sidebar badges down. Fork em! They are dead.

Depending on a blog to have a G+ presence for me to be able to see their content here is simply and utterly egotistical. Same for the filtering on Facebook.

Not to mention, Facebook filtering is massively more heavy than Google+ filtering. Social simply is not the way to get your best streams of information any more. Turn off Facebook filtering? It degenerates into total chaos…

Right now, the glory wild-wild-west days of social and before that RSS is over. And I want it back!

What About Email Newsletters?

Or on the odd chance the blog has an email list newsletter form? Well my Gmail is a great testament to what happens when you follow every great blog via email. 300 emails a day, every one worth opening and every email with great content, video or a podcast recording inside.

Every one unread, unopened and in 10 years? 63 Gigs of stored emails.

What About Feedly, Can’t We Just Read Blogs There?

5,000 visitors to my blog, 500 shares on just one blog post. 0 adds to Feedly and I have a dang button on the site. Remember, I don’t just read blogs, I write them too :]

Stuart O’Neill said: “That [RSS] would extend things but would we want that much outside information in the stream?”

Yes, I want outside content. Isn’t that what following people on social is about? Them sharing outside content for me to discover? Or that I may have otherwise not seen?

One of the most common sentiments on Facebook from the big powerful influencers to the little guy like me has been “I want to be more in control of the filtering on my feeds…

And no one wants to read blogs on Feedly. Because you and I have all become conditioned to getting something back from social. We judge our time spent on any site by who follows us, how many followers we have and and +1s / Likes in what ever form they come in.

Why Does Google+ Get Called A Ghost Town?

When someone like me with 50,000 followers shares a blog post they spent hour(s) writing and you get zero interaction on it? Well that is where “G+ is a ghost town posts” come from. My own ego tells me you want to read my writing, and that leads us all to believe no one ever saw it on Google+ or Facebook.

Giving us the power -Bradley Horowitz- to see what we want to see, outside of who we follow. That would be a great way to revive positivity about what ever is to become of Google+. RSS is still available on every blog. Why not just give us the option to use it?

We need to be in control of what we read and see, not at the behest of the bloggers sharing, not at the filtering of an algorithm, and not having to use 4 different platforms to stay abreast of what is going on. And not having to follow people, and endure their cat pictures.

You should see what they say about G+ on Facebook the last few days. If anything the press G+ has received lately is yet another decline in quality content being shared here. Confidence outside of Google+ itself is at an all time low.

The idea that every blog on the Internet is going to share content into G+ is utterly heretical on Google’s part. And the idea that I have to pay for my content to be seen of Facebook is just plain greedy too.

Outside what I have seen Ana Hoffman post lately, there is simply nothing here for me when it comes to my business.

From a publisher’s standpoint, same thing. No one in my niche is here on G+. They all left and went back to Facebook.

Social Should Augment Content, Not Replace It

As Google originally envisioned, social should be a layer within content, not the entire burrito as it has it is in 2015.

Don’t want a RSS feed of blogs in your Google+ feed? Well then don’t add them. Or we should have the option to not display them. Google; are you listening?

Enough About what’s Wrong with The Internet, Here’s What Could Be Right

Now if Google gave us back the “Add to Google” button like we had for Google Reader in 2008?

Well, then they would be providing the service to publishers that we need to make time spent here worthwhile.

And Google could certainly one up Facebook that no longer wants to display our content unless you pay for that appearance.

And I think you will all agree the Internet could use a great free traffic source back in the hands of the writers who write- and the readers who read!

7 comments on “The Future Of The Google+ Stream

  1. The bottom line here in my thinking is that filtering content is probably where social went wrong in the first place…

  2. I would agree entirely with you on this subject. Its becoming increasingly difficult to know what is and what isn’t working any longer for people like us who not only ‘publish’ content on a regular basis but also ‘consume’ content in a bid to learn from our ‘followers’ or our ‘peers’. I remember the good old days when I could publish something to my
    ‘crowd’ and it would be read and passed around without the need for all this “social” footprint.

    Bring back the “old days” PLEASE !!

  3. I’m not sure Google wants to bring publishers any closer to them. They tried with the Author pics on SERPS and we outshined their ads. This proposal would probably hit them in the same way. They only like us in so far as we provide them with things to categorize and put ads next to. Outside of that, I don’t think we have the cozy relationship we once did with Google. And we can’t go on strike because there are tens of thousands of content publishers ready to bust the line – and Google knows it.

  4. Chris: I agree and disagree. Perhaps I see the solution differently. This is not the automated insertion of content into the stream. I don’t even know if that’s what you want. So this may be a stupid reply. If so delete.

    The ‘share’ system used by most sites allow us to share the article we are reading. Frankly I don’t read the average blog. I read magazines, new centers and very well established blogs. Consequently I can insert them into G+ by way of sharing. I can also send them to my one-person community on G+ that I use as a curation site.

    To get to the automated way of working around the lack of RSS could be to use the RSS to publish on your blog and use some of the apps available to auto-share it into your stream. The problem I see is that there no way for you to contribute to the content.

    So back to the blog that has the RSS content, or the curation of the content. You pick out the content you wish to share, make your contribution to the article then use an app to schedule the publication into G+.

    If you wish to pick and choose what gets published this is a way to do it. Publishing once a day, or publishing articles that aren’t so topical that they die in a day, you could publish 3-4 times a week or less and insert valued content into the stream.

    I don’t know if this if this is valued. I’m not an RSS expert or even user. I created content and mixed it with content from other places. So this is worth, perhaps, exactly what paid for it…nothing.
    value is in the eye of the beholder

  5. Cindy on said:

    Knell. Death knell.

  6. Hi there mate,

    You know my thoughts on the topic. I’ve stopped promoting RSS as an option to subscribe on my blog. It’s there, if anyone wants to grab it – but I won’t promote it by a sign-up box, or anything.

    I see RSS the same you see email. I’m very particular as to what content I subscribe to, so I’d never have 300+ email subscriptions taking up my valuable email space. I did have over 300+ blogs subscribe to by RSS – read maybe 1% of them. Blogs I subscribe to by email? I’ll read every one.