Google+ is a social networking application on the web.


Circles are one of the most interesting features of Google+.

Circles are the inverse of following. Following on Twitter means “I will listen to what you say” (and you can be a voyeur by not posting anything). On Friending on Facebook means “we will both be listening to each other” (and you can be a voyeur by not posting anything). On Google+ circling means “I might address you in my non-public posts” (and you can only be a very limited voyeur by reading my public posts). I can limit my posts to my work circle and the gamers in my RPG circle will never know. (The same can be achieved with a lot of clicking using Facebook lists.)

This “picking a target audience” is a Google+ benefit. But there is a drawback, too: reduced serendipity. If I add you to my RPG circle, you might never learn of my love for Emacs.

With blogs, you can sometimes subscribe to feeds for certain tags only. On Google+ we cannot indicate our interests to others. We can’t say “please add me to your RPG circle if you have one, and I’m also an audiophile, just in caseā€¦”

Actually, maybe I should write something like that on my profile page. Problem solved?