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Is Twitter Rendered Obsolete By Google+? 456

Posted by timothy
from the imitation-adoption-adaption-repeat dept.
suraj.sun writes with a ComputerWorld piece predicting the end of Twitter, at least in its current form. From the article: "It's only a matter of time before Twitter becomes a ghost town. While Google+ will soon do all the things Twitter does, Twitter can't support a long list of the things Google+ supports. Also on Google+, you can post pictures and videos directly in posts, launch immediately into a video chat, send your posts to nonmembers and even present all your posts marked 'Public' as a blog available to anyone with an Internet."
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Is Twitter Rendered Obsolete By Google+?

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday July 25, 2011 @09:45PM (#36878908)

    Can I get "an Internet"? How do you quantify one?

  • Long answer? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday July 25, 2011 @09:45PM (#36878910)
    No.
    • Seriously, if this were in any way correct, then Facebook would have already killed Twitter.

      Dan Aris

      • by he-sk (103163) on Tuesday July 26, 2011 @03:41AM (#36880792)

        "Friending" on Facebook is different from "Following" on Twitter. On Facebook it's symmetrical -- I can't friend you, unless you also friend me. On Twitter it's asymmetrical -- you can follow me, without me following you back.

        This difference alone is why Facebook will never kill Twitter. (And I'm not even talking about the horrible UI mess that is Facebook, or it's atrocious privacy reputation.)

        Google+ follows Twitter's following philosophy and in that way is much more like to Twitter than Facebook is. OTOH, Twitter allows anonymity which Google+ sadly doesn't.

    • This.

      Google tried to kill it with Buzz, but only got a hangover :P . If I want to share something interesting with Google's services, I need to choose between three:

      • Google Reader
      • Google Buzz
      • Google+

      Note that these are not fully integrated, so people are segregated by the service I use to broadcast. Twitter is just Twitter, can be as closed for outsiders as a doll's an*s, and comes in 140 characters (more than enough for the ADHD-afflicted masses).

      • by iamhassi (659463)
        Agreed.

        "Note that these are not fully integrated, so people are segregated by the service I use to broadcast. "

        Thank god! I'm a little worried by a facebook-clone (google+) linked with my email (gmail) linked with my youtube linked with my twitter (google+) linked with my search (google) linked with my Android phone linked with GPS. I really really don't like the idea of all of these communicating with each other whenever they want.

        Google+ gives just too much power to Google. They already own ou
    • Twitter was rendered obsolete by the marketing departments who overused it for advertising, and users who insist on notifying everyone of every mundane aspect of their lives.

  • Long Live Twitter (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday July 25, 2011 @09:46PM (#36878922)

    But on Twitter I can use any name I wish ...

  • by timeOday (582209) on Monday July 25, 2011 @09:47PM (#36878930)
    If were about "doing more," people would still just be using email (and email lists) over twitter. It's all the restrictions of twitter that prevent it from being a nuisance that made it stick.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Seumas (6865)

      Twitter is about a uni-directional attention-whore self-absorbed broadcasting medium. Let me broadcast as much inanity and bullshit about my life to tens of thousands of people who are hanging on my every word, because I have a podcast, a tech blog, an album, or a pair of tits. Twitter is about catering to attention-whores and their sycophants and as a result, there will always be a place for *any* utility that facilitates the experience of said attention-whore the broadest and easiest.

  • by chill (34294)

    And nothing of value was lost.

  • by PJ6 (1151747)
    I thought Twitter already obsolete.
  • "While Google+ will soon do all the things Twitter does, Twitter can't support a long list of the things Google+ supports"

    Since when has featureset been Twitter's strong point?! It's managed to own all other competition while staying remaining in and of itself a platform that you can post 140 characters of text on, nothing more.
  • But... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MrEricSir (398214) on Monday July 25, 2011 @09:55PM (#36879000) Homepage

    ...will Google lock me out of Gmail and other services if they decide my Twitter account violated the TOS?

    No? Well in that case I'll keep using Twitter and they can keep Google Plus.

    • Re:But... (Score:5, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday July 25, 2011 @10:10PM (#36879130)

      See the answer straight from the horse's mouth: https://plus.google.com/113116318008017777871/posts/VJoZMS8zVqU.

      • Mod parent up. Very informative reply by google.

        Proper link [google.com]
      • by MrEricSir (398214)

        At this point, the backpedaling by Google once again demonstrates they don't have a clue how to run a social network. The worst part is they seem incapable of admitting they made a mistake.

        • Did you even read the post? It says

          We’ve noticed that many violations of the Google+ common name policy were in fact well-intentioned and inadvertent and for these users our process can be frustrating and disappointing. So we’re currently making a number of improvements to this process

          If that's not an admission that they made mistakes, what is?

          • Re:But... (Score:4, Interesting)

            by realityimpaired (1668397) on Tuesday July 26, 2011 @08:08AM (#36881940)

            And what about those of us who share names with celebrities, or things like that? The case of "Mike" Bolton from Office Space does actually happen in real life (case in point, if you google my name, you either come up with stories about somebody in Arizona who pissed off a Dell tech support agent, or you come up with somebody who's working as a model in the UK).

            And that's to say nothing of people who've legally changed their names in protest, or because it's funny. I had a prof in University who changed his last name to Strangelove when he got his PhD. There's also been a fairly well publicized incident last year in Canada because somebody who had changed his last name to Nobody was arrested during the G20 protests, and got abused by cops who thought he was lying about his name.... What's going to happen when somebody with a name like that signs up to Google+?

            I, for one, do *not* want to have to send them a copy of my driver's license just to prove that I am who I say I am. Frankly, it's not their fucking job to police anonymity on the Internet. I could sign up saying that I'm the Queen of Sheba, and they have no business asking me to prove that, because it's just an Internet site. If I was applying for a job, or wanting to run for public office, I could see the requirement for some proof of identity, but it's just a social network, and if they can't see the difference then I don't want to have anything to do with their stupidity.

      • by ThorGod (456163)

        Sounds like a good reason to not use google+...

        I'll avoid any name conventions by sticking with gmail, thx

    • And this is why I have different Google accounts for different services. Yes, I had to tie my YouTube account to a GMail. Did I tie it to my "real" one? Heck no. Why? Because I don't plan to lose my GMail account over something I post on YouTube or vice versa.

      And why'd I bother to? What benefit do I have from "integrating" those services? I mean, aside of a lot of spam every time some idiot deems it necessary to "invite" me to his channel?

  • by aiken_d (127097) <brooks@tangent[ ]com ['ry.' in gap]> on Monday July 25, 2011 @09:55PM (#36879010) Homepage

    That means it's sure to win. This reminds of of when OS/2 mopped the floor with Windows because it had superior multitasking and memory management!

    • by osu-neko (2604)

      That means it's sure to win. This reminds of of when OS/2 mopped the floor with Windows because it had superior multitasking and memory management!

      If only they'd had a superior product... or at least a decent UI. Lacking that, all the wonderful multitasking and memory management in the world was pretty useless.

    • by LWATCDR (28044)

      Or when the Amiga mopped the floor with MS-DOS when it offered multi-tasking, no 640k limit, no segments, system support for stereo sound, graphics, and printing.
      Actually Google+ has become less useful because of Googles removing of some users. What makes Twitter useful to me are a few "users". Breaking News, BBC, NASA, and some other news sources. The tech bloggers that I follow on twitter I also follow on Plus but those news services are the ones that I want back.
      But then I have mostly left Facebook years

  • In a related news story, apples will replace oranges, pineapples will be outmoded by the superior engineering that is the banana, and red bull will totally replace water... except in toilets.

  • when it's slow, i find the extra internets really help with the twittering speed.

  • by rueger (210566) * on Monday July 25, 2011 @10:06PM (#36879084) Homepage
    Where Twitter loses is in monetizing traffic. In other words, Google knows how to use your traffic to feed you ads that sooner or later you click on. They do it well enough to make a lot of money.

    This works for Google because all of their products draw you into their web space, and you can't avoid being presented with Google Ads.

    The weakness of Twitter is that in many ways it's easier to use from a phone, Hootsuite, or some other client - even Google Plus with an add-on. There's never any need to actually visit the Twitter web site.

    Consequently they're stuck with those idiotic "Promoted Tweets" - which in my experience are so far removed from anything that interests me that I really think they're using chimpanzees instead of algorithms to place them.
    • I don't look at the ads. You learn how to ignore them as they're only mildly relevant. They make some people money in a vacuous ecosystem, but for many of us, they're just visual noise in the background.

      Twitter doesn't have them, doesn't require a smartphone or above, and gets a lot of work done with great brevity. Google is like an army worth of features to get lost in, some good, some bad. Twitter is very and deceptively simple, and there's wisdom in doing at least one thing right.

      Yeah, I've tried G+. No,

    • I don't think I've ever clicked on a Google ad (or any other ad for that matter), except by accident.
    • This works for Google because all of their products draw you into their web space, and you can't avoid being presented with Google Ads.

      so far, only on phones, do I get stuck with ads. and that's because I have not yet rooted my phone (will be, though, shortly).

      they can try to deliver ads all they want. I'll never see them. most of us won't, truth be told.

      google, to me, means 'select an element to hide' gets LOTS of exercise. and my cpu filters a LOT of bullshit from 'the internets'.

  • by nzac (1822298) on Monday July 25, 2011 @10:07PM (#36879096)

    I kind of look at twitter as an rrs hosting service (for personal use) that put a web interface on the top and made a purpose built manager and search engine. Its main success was that the account was secondary to the "tweets" (so you did not need to share personal information, and you knew what you were sharing) and that they got media endorsement. The limitations lowered the barrier for the general public to use it.

  • Is Google+ rendered redundant by Twitter?
  • by Just Some Guy (3352) <kirk+slashdot@strauser.com> on Monday July 25, 2011 @10:15PM (#36879168) Homepage Journal
    If you look at Google+ and Twitter as APIs, then you can implement Twitter using the Google+ API but not the reverse. That doesn't mean things can't change, but I bet a few Twitter project managers have been sleepless lately.
  • People use Twitter for quick updates and news, not for life stories. It's RSS for everyone. As an aside, this comment would fit on Twitter.

    • by glwtta (532858)
      People use Twitter for quick updates and news, not for life stories.

      Some people use Twitter for incessant quick updates, which amounts to the same thing (but more annoying).
  • They can both be obsolete.

  • Twitter will take a hit, but it will survive. It is enough different from G+ and FriendFace that it will continue to fit the needs of much of its user base. What I find most interesting is that nobody has mentioned Diaspora since Google+ launched. Is it a dead project?
    • by glwtta (532858)
      What I find most interesting is that nobody has mentioned Diaspora since Google+ launched. Is it a dead project?

      Heh, it's not like the world was all aflutter with Diaspora news before Plus, either. It was a non-starter from the beginning - classic example of "technical solution to a non-technical problem".
  • I have a Facebook, don't use it. I don't need Google+. Twitter is a good niche for me because it allows me to keep some track of my friends without having to know every damn thing they are doing. It also lends to being more anonymous. I don't really want my real name out there except to people I really know well. But I have plenty of followers on Twitter who like what I post and don't care that much EXACTLY who I am. Twitter lends itself well to that since neither Facebook nor G+ allow pseudonyms.
  • by retroworks (652802) on Monday July 25, 2011 @10:32PM (#36879320) Homepage Journal
    The hypno-toad always wins.
  • by grumbel (592662) <grumbel@gmx.de> on Monday July 25, 2011 @10:48PM (#36879444) Homepage

    I really can't see Google+ replacing Twitter anytime soon, as Google+ has a strict requirement for real names and will even close accounts based on it. Twitter on the other side is fine with pseudonyms and gets used a lot with them, not only from people that want to keep their real names private, but also organizations and companies that use it as their news feed or just from fake personalities for commedy purposes.

    Google+ seems to have some plans to allow business use in the future, but right now they doesn't and it's not clear if they only allow that for money or also for the average make-shift organization (i.e. Anonymous, Wikileaks, Free Software stuff, etc.).

    As far as I see it, with it's requirement for real names Google has essentially taken a first real step to being evil, while Twitter on the other side seems to be a much more open platform that is used by a lot of people that don't want their real names to be known for one reason or another.

    • As far as I see it, with it's requirement for real names Google has essentially taken a first real step to being evil, while Twitter on the other side seems to be a much more open platform that is used by a lot of people that don't want their real names to be known for one reason or another.

      How do you come up with that conclusion? That's like a child saying their parents are evil for making them go to bed at a reasonable hour. If you look at all the other social networks, a lot of griefing and spam comes out of people using fake accounts and psuedonyms. Its not impossible to do either of those on google+, but its certainly going to make people less likely to do it. I think griefing and spam is evil. I think that google is perfectly justified to prohibit the use of pseudonyms. Especially since

  • a random comment from google's post (https://plus.google.com/113116318008017777871/posts/VJoZMS8zVqU#113116318008017777871/posts/VJoZMS8zVqU):


    Is this about advertising revenue and more accurate subscriber numbers to up ad revenue when introduced? Is the policy an attempt to give Google+ more credibility? Forgive my bluntness, but I don't believe for a moment that you truly think the naming policy is enforceable. What is the REAL reason behind the policy against anonymity here?

    I think that guy hit it on the

  • by MacTO (1161105) on Monday July 25, 2011 @11:02PM (#36879548)

    I use Twitter because of SMS, and it doesn't cost me a dime (since my plan has unlimited SMS whether I use it or not). So until Google offers SMS services, Twitter style, anyone going from Twitter to Google+ will be limiting their market. Then again, maybe I'm special.

    • by bersl2 (689221)

      No, I'm of the same mind.

      I still use a Nokia 3120 (I think that's what it is) and have no data plan, so first-class SMS support is Twitter's killer feature for me. Until there is a smart phone and data plan out there which meet my needs and price, I will keep this arrangement as long as possible.

  • by Beelzebud (1361137) on Monday July 25, 2011 @11:26PM (#36879728)
    Twitter was obsolete when it only allowed 140 characters.
  • by uvajed_ekil (914487) on Monday July 25, 2011 @11:49PM (#36879854)
    Not if Google keep banning years-old email accounts for stupid little problems associated with Google+. I wanted to join when my sister sent me an invite (not because it looked that great, but because my sister asked me to join), but I resisted because it was too new and too closely linked to other Google services. I'm glad I did, since Gmail has been my main email provider for several years, including for work, and my Google/Gmail name is not 100% accurate. I'd hate to lose years of email due to some dumb little infringement of an unrealistic TOS agreement. Maybe eventually, but for now there are too many kinks to work out.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      You don't lose access to Gmail (or Docs, Calendar, Blogger, or any other Google service that doesn't require Google+) if you're banned from Google+. The only way you can get a full Google-wide ban is if you're caught breaking a Google-wide policy such as spamming or illegal activity. They've also changed their policy so they give you fair warning to change your username before they lock your account, and there's an appeals process in place to get your account back if you do get banned for using a fake usern

  • by Bieeanda (961632) on Monday July 25, 2011 @11:53PM (#36879882)
    Seriously, this is 'Will Wave Eat E-Mail' all over again. No. It has long strings attached. It has plenty of bells and whistles, but this is comparing apples and fruit baskets, or a can opener with a Swiss army knife. Sometimes all you want is an apple for your teacher, and sure you can cut meat, whittle wood, read fine print, tweeze splinters and even open cans with your knife, but it'll be faster and cheaper if you just go out to the kitchen and use the tool that was designed for that and nothing else.
  • by NotQuiteReal (608241) on Tuesday July 26, 2011 @12:00AM (#36879914) Journal
    Or maybe an edited version?

    For those of us who have never used twitter, is there an edited, "best of" to convince us to use it?

    I googled "best of twitter", but it appears to be an reductio ad absurdum situation - all the top links seem to want me to follow some twitter account...

    Is there compelling twitter content I am missing?
    • by Homburg (213427)

      Is there a "best of email," or a "best of websites"? Neither of these make much sense, because the point of web sites is to read the ones your interested in, and the point of email is to communicate with the people you know. Likewise, the point of Twitter is to follow people you are interested in and/or know. If you don't know of anyone who is of interest to you who uses Twitter, there's not much point in you using it, just as it would be pointless to use email if you didn't know anyone else who used email.

  • I actually use it... (Score:4, Informative)

    by Gooba42 (603597) <gooba42@gYEATSmail.com minus poet> on Tuesday July 26, 2011 @12:05AM (#36879960)

    I'm actually on G+ and I use it kind of a lot. I thought the discussion might benefit from somebody who's actually actively using the service rather than having sampled it and written it off as "I hate social networking and this is social networking". I'm enjoying it a good bit because it's more interactive and engaging than Twitter and with a lot more obvious and up-front control over everything than on Facebook.

    The integration with Picasa is excellent and I'm looking forward to the (optional) integration with the other services. I'll really be happy with it when Gmail and Voice filters can use my Circles to do useful work, i.e. let family and friends through, dump the other crap.

    I'm still using Twitter, mostly because I'm still following #FuckYouWashington, but less and less. G+ easily occupies the same space as Twitter and with a little tweaking will easily replace Facebook for me.

    As for the supposed privacy issues, I haven't run into anything that concerns me. When I share something Public, I take for granted that means Public. When I post to a smaller Circle, I trust it go to that smaller Circle. If they want a more accurate profile of me to present ads which I might conceivably be interested in while I'm doing my friends-and-family socializing, that works fine by me. I've dismissed about a million Zynga ads on Facebook and their ad-bot code can't take a hint so more accurate ad profiling works in my favor by being less irritating by several orders of magnitude.

    Moreover, I can use any pseudonym I like as long as I don't use it on G+ which seems a reasonable trade-off. If your concern is that the CIA might get grandma's cookie recipe, then you're screwed if your family is contacting you through G+ but hopefully you're bright enough to do anything truly nefarious on a more secure channel.

    I follow a couple of Googlers, a couple of celebrities I was already following on Twitter and that's just about it for now until invites are opened a little wider. In all it's low-key and fosters a more interesting kind of correspondence. Open discourse seems to pop up a lot more often and it's a lot more coherent than either a Twitter discussion or a Facebook comment thread not to mention a lot easier to join a public thread.

    In all, I like it a lot and I'm looking forward to the improvements.

  • by Angst Badger (8636) on Tuesday July 26, 2011 @12:54AM (#36880168)

    This is like asking whether nose-picking is going to obsolete butt-scratching. I mean, sure, there's an answer ("probably not"), but even if it does, the only discernible effect will be the usual six-month lag before TV journalists catch up to whatever bit of jargon replaces "tweet".

  • by cervesaebraciator (2352888) on Tuesday July 26, 2011 @01:52AM (#36880374)
    For my part, I don’t see the problem with Twitter. I mean, 140 characters is more than enough to develop a fully formed and well articulated
  • by Jason Levine (196982) on Tuesday July 26, 2011 @09:51AM (#36882864)

    Right now, Twitter has some advantages that Google+ doesn't have. They aren't insurmountable, but Google+ as it stands now won't replace Twitter.

    - SMS Updates: Right now, I can text 40404 with a tweet and it'll appear on my Twitter stream. Google is apparently testing this in India. No news on when/if this will appear in America and other countries.

    - API/Third Party Tools: Right now, I can run Seesmic Desktop to check my tweets. I can have my blog tweet for me. I can program my own application to interact with Twitter. Twitter lets me do all this thanks to their open APIs. Google+ currently doesn't have any APIs. Once they get an API-set, then people can develop tools to let me access Google+ without actually having to go to Google's website. Until then, they'll lag behind.

    - Names: I use a pseudonym on my blog and Twitter. I don't use my real name (unlike on Slashdot, but this account was from years back when I didn't care about privacy as much). Google+, however, demands that I use my real name. I don't want everyone I tweet/blog to to know my real name. I'd rather show them the pseudonym and let certain circles see my real name. If Google+ would let me choose who gets to see my real name and who doesn't, they would solve this problem. (They could require you input your real name but then have you set which circles see which names/nicknames.)

    I'll keep an eye on Google+, but until they fix the above items I'm not abandoning Twitter for it.

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