Google+ has come with another feature which says “Ask Your Friends”. This feature allows users to ask friends for answers on their queries. Google + gives an option of Want to Ask Your Friend about XYZ? And the question gets posted on Google+. This crowd-sourcing feature lets people turn to their social networking sites to get their queries answered. However, this feature is not good for every query as it may look foolish to ask certain questions on social networking sites like “how do we search on Google?” Since this prompt appears for the entire search it can be great fun and it does make sense to provide such options. The user need to click on “Ask On Google” when an overlay window will appear where the question need to be filled in using the preface “hi there! I have a question…..” Once the question is asked it appears on the Google+ stream and is shared to the person whom it is indicated. It might be a useful feature which also doubles up as an unwanted intrusion at times.Towards Better Identity Protection and SurveillancePage said that they are working on providing something very beautiful where Gmail, Android, Chrome, Search, Ads, and YouTube are in early stages of having deep support for user identity and relationship. Eric Schmidt, in discussion with the Online Identity Ecosystem last year said that Google is right in getting as many as people possible onto the network with Google+ , which though is essentially early beta, and is doing very well so far and is providing an identity service. Identity providers have to comply with strict government regulations to offer their services as certified identity providers for Federal websites. Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) and Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) in Washington have shown concern over online user verification citing that it may result in increased surveillance or identity theft. Google is one of the active players in the online identity verification along with Paypal, Microsoft, Symantec and Ping Identity. Google Identity Toolkit provides information about incorporating a Federated login into your account.Be Known by Your PseudonymGoogle+ is now also allowing pseudonym which was a promise made by Google three months ago to their users. Bradley Horowitz, Google + Vice President of Product Management made an announcement saying that a new support will be installed in Google+ to display your nicknames, maiden names or names in other script and will soon be displayed in broader areas in Google+. To add nickname the user has to go to their profile, click on edit profile, and by selecting their name they have to click on more options. The users should keep in mind that this change in their name will reflect in all their Googleness. Emphasizing on the policies and processes he said that there is an update which says “broaden support for established pseudonyms," which allows users to confirm their established identity if the user gets flagged and feel that it’s an error.Google+ Builds User Base with Auto-sign inThe new users of Google products like Gmail, YouTube and Blogger are being automatically signed in to Google+ since January 20th 2012. However, it can be disabled only if they choose to do so by logging into their already existing Gmail account. Lately, Google has been multiplying its efforts on making people join the social networking sites so as to enable the US government’s National Strategies for Trusted Identities in cyberspace program, keep a check on how people sign in to government and other websites. Google newly launched Search+ Your World integrates Google+ activity in a personalized search result which has resulted in the Google+ brand pages show up in the primary organic search result. When someone registers in a new Gmail account to log in to YouTube or any other Google services it redirects to a confirmation page notification bar encouraging users to make use of Google’s Plus service. Larry Page announced that Google+ has reached a user base of 90 million which does not include the active users but the number of Google accounts created and that of this 90 million users 60% are the one who uses Google daily whereas 80% are the one who use it weekly. The registered user see two new Google+ notification on their activity bar and both are linked to Google+ help resources.
Working on the evolving Social Media platforms for the last 3 years, I have been constantly researching and updating my knowledge base and skill set to keep up and perhaps, stay a step ahead of the latest trends in Social Media and Search Engine Optimization ....