Several weeks ago, in the wake of Google’s shameless and hypocritical abandonment of loyal Google users and communities with the announced rapidly approaching shutdown of consumer Google+ (originally scheduled for August, then — with yet another kick in the teeth to their users — advanced to April based on obviously exaggerated security claims) I created a new private forum to help stay in touch with my own G+ followers.
This was not something that I had anticipated needing to do.
If Google had shown even an ounce of concern for their users’ feelings, and provided the means for the “families” of users created on G+ since its inception to have some way to stay in touch after Google pulls the plug on consumer G+ (to concentrate on expanding their enterprise/business version of G+), I wouldn’t even have had to think about creating a new forum at this stage.
But relying upon Google in these respects — please see: “Can We Trust Google?” (https://lauren.vortex.com/2018/12/10/can-we-trust-google) — is a fool’s errand. Google has made it clear that even their most loyal users can be booted out the door at any time that upper management finds them to be an “inconvenience” in the Google ecosystem, to be swatted like flies. Given Google’s continuing user support and user trust failures in other areas, we all should have seen this coming long ago. In fact, many of us did, but had hoped that we were wrong.
There have been continuing efforts to find some way in conjunction with Google to keep some of these consumer G+ relationships alive — for example, via the enterprise version of G+. To date, these prospects continue to appear bleak. Google seems to have no respect at all for their consumer G+ users, beyond the absolute minimum of providing a way for users to download their own G+ posting archives.
Since Google clearly cares not about destroying the relationships built up on Google+, and since I have many friends on G+ with whom I don’t want to lose touch (many of which, ironically, are Googlers — great Google employees), I created my own small, new private forum as a way to hopefully avoid total decapitation of these relationships at the hands of Google’s G+ guillotine.
A significant number of my G+ followers have already joined. But I’ve been frequently asked if I would consider opening it up further for other G+ users who feel burned by Google’s upcoming demolition of G+, especially since many G+ users are not finding the currently publicly available alternatives to be appealing, for a range of very good reasons. Facebook is nonstarter for many, and various of the other public alternatives are already infested with alt-right and other forms of trolls who were justifiably kicked off of the mainstream platforms.
So while I am indeed willing to accept invitation requests more broadly from G+ users and other folks who are feeling increasingly without a welcoming social media home, please carefully consider the following before applying.
It’s my private forum. My rules apply. It operates as a (hopefully) benign dictatorship. I reserve the right to reject any invite applications or submitted postings. Any bad behavior (by my definitions) will result in ejection, typically on a one-strike basis. All submitted posts will be moderated (by myself and/or by trusted users whom I designate) before potentially being accepted and becoming visible on the forum. Private messaging between users is not supported at this time. I make no guarantees regarding how long the forum will operate or how it might evolve, but my intention is for it to be a low-key and comfortable place for friends to post and discuss issues of interest.
If you don’t like that kind of environment, then please don’t even bother applying for an invitation. Go use Facebook. Or go somewhere else. Good luck. You’re going to need it.
If you do want to apply for an invitation, please send an email message explaining briefly who you are and why you want to join, to:
I look forward to hearing from you.
Take care. Be seeing you.