Facebook came out as a miraculous success from the dorm room of a cunning 19-year-old Harvard sophomore. It’s not every day that you create a platform with such immense preference, following, and utility that makes it the center of digital socialization for people all around the world. Google attempted the creation of its own synchronized and interconnected social platform dubbed Google+. Due to its lack of “luck,” unfortunately, Google has officially announced the shut down of this social networking platform which was created in hopes of providing Facebook with some hearty competition.
Google has announced that its Google+ will be permanently dismantled on the 2nd of April this year. Any and all profiles and pages that were created will be permanently deleted.
The reason specified for this announcement is the lack of usage of the Google+ service by users, a service defamed when the company was found to have compromised private data of half a million users who used Google to access connected applications as well. Till date Google explains that the data breach was investigated but not found to be tied down to any compromise or improper safeguarding of privacy of the Google+ profiles, but a case such as this was bound to throw users off the already struggling social networking platform.
With this news in sight, the two main logical questions that arise for consumers are: what does this mean for me and my interaction with Google products, and, for better or for worse, what exactly is Google+?
Starting with those who don’t know what Google+ is, Google+ is (soon to become “was”) an interconnected networking platform created by Google which allows users to create a single profile that synchronizes all of their personal and public data much like the way Facebook does so that users can interact and network digitally online. This does not wholly encompass your regular Google account, however. So, for those of you who are unsure about Google+ and whether you even have a Google+ account, Google will email you all with a warning reminder just in case prior to the April 2nd wipe-out. In the case that you turn out to have such a profile under your name, read on.
Those who know that they are affiliated with Google+, the question to ask becomes: what does this mean for me and how will this wipe-out affect the way that I interact with my Google applications? According to the information released by Google concerning this wipe-out, it’s clear that any pages, profiles, or multimedia (this includes photos and videos) stored in the Google+ album archives will be deleted. This does not mean that you will lose any other Google server stored data, though. Any and all files stored in the Google drive, Google mail, or other platforms not explicitly stated above will remain untouched as they are. The linkage of Google accounts with applications such as YouTube will remain undisturbed and your Google account will continue to serve as a single and centralized set of authentication credentials.
Google had intended to perform this wipe-out a few months ago in August, but due to a technical fault found in the platform, the company decided to delay the wipe-out until concerns regarding the privacy of the users already existing on the Google+ domain were resolved. The date has now been fixed to the 2nd of April. For those concerned about backing up any data that may be on the Google+ wipe-out chopping block, the company has created a page from which users can export all of their Google+ profile data in a friendly and readable format that can then be uploaded to other social networking sites to build your online profile there.