Linda Buquet

Local Search Expert
Jun 28, 2012
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The head of Google+, Vic Gundotra announced he is leaving Google which has caused all kinds of speculation about what will happen to G+ going forward.

Speculation is also just beginning about how this could affect Google+ Local.


TechCrunch did what I think is a hugely overblown story yesterday.

<a href="">Google+ Is Walking Dead | TechCrunch</a>

What we’re hearing from multiple sources is that Google+ will no longer be considered a product, but a platform — essentially ending its competition with other social networks like Facebook and Twitter...

We’ve heard Google has not yet decided what to do with the teams not going to Android, and that Google+ is not “officially” dead, more like walking dead: “When you fire the top dog and take away all resources it is what it is.” It will take copious amounts of work for it to un-zombie, if that’s even a possibility.

It’s not clear, according to our sources’ intel, where the rest of the employees will go, but the assumption is that Larry Page will follow Mark Zuckerberg’s lead at Facebook and send the bulk of them to mobile roles.

I'm too out of it (5 Weeks in....Bronchitis>> Pneumonia>> Partially collapsed lung>> 4 new meds) to add much commentary, but I'll copy some thoughts I posted last night during what I think was a 1/2 way lucid moment.

That TechCrunch article was brought up at a Google community I'm involved in.

A moderator at that group said: "although it's certainly a topic to follow in general, it doesn't relate directly to local search, so I'm afraid we'll have to remove it"

I replied:

The way I see it local is now G+. Everything is interwoven so, I don't really understand how this could be seen as not relevant for local. I mean, I'm not really buying it [the TC storyline], but still think it's related enough to be discussed and am glad you brought it up.

It scared me for a brief second, but then I decided it seems greatly overblown. But I do know that often when there is a shakeup in one division at G it can have a ripple effect on other departments. We are so in bed with G+ now, it does give me just a little bit of uncertainty about what changes if any could affect local.

To be clear, no way do I think local is going away as someone mentioned, I just think big changes can sometimes stall new updates and features that are maybe in the works or cause policies to change.

So again no way is G+ OR Local going away. G+ has become the heart and soul of Google it ain't goin' anywhere and neither is Local!

But with new leadership comes changes and no one really knows how this will shake out. Could be some exciting new direction will come from this so it could be good news, instead of the negativity that TC painted.

Here are a couple more balanced articles with more of just the facts we know and less speculation. I'll add more as I find it, or you add anything you stumble across in your journeys as well.

Google scaling back Google+ efforts, dropping integration requirement for its other products

<a href="">Head of Google+, Vic Gundotra leaving Google | Google Plus Daily</a>

<a href="">And Then, Google+ boss Vic Gundotra leaves the company after 8 years for parts unknown</a>



Linda Buquet

Local Search Expert
Jun 28, 2012
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Here's a good one I just found.

<a href="">I'm embarrassed for TechCrunch at how badly they handled Vic Gundotra's departure</a>

Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.

That's the most charitable way that I can explain TechCrunch's Google+ Is Walking Dead.

"What we’re hearing from multiple sources is that Google+ will no longer be considered a product, but a platform..."

Oh, okay, that makes some sense. They have created the features necessary to integrate Google+ into everything they do from now on. Makes sense.

"...essentially ending its competition with other social networks like Facebook and Twitter."

Wait, what? That doesn't follow at all. They just said that they no longer consider social to be a separate unit, but now will be potentially integrated to everything they do. How is that the same thing as giving up on social?

Linda Buquet

Local Search Expert
Jun 28, 2012
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More good commentary...

Google+’s Chief Architect, says the info in that Techcrunch post is BS!

<a href="">Yonatan Zunger puts Google+ "Walking Dead" rumors to rest | Google Plus Daily</a>

This one is interesting, from a previous Googler...
<a href="">A Personal Reflection On Google+ | TechCrunch</a>
Seemed so insightful at 1st but then it looks like he was just an intern for 2 months and never uses G+????

<a href="">What Would Happen If Google Really Did Kill Google+?</a>

<a href="">Google+ Head Vic Gundotra Is Out, Leaving Its "Social Spine" Wobbly – ReadWrite</a>

<a href="">Google Will Be Better Off Minus Google+</a>

<a href="">Why Google+ Should Give Up Its Battle Against Facebook</a>

Linda Buquet

Local Search Expert
Jun 28, 2012
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Amazing quote #2 - the part in bold.

"But beyond that, it just doesn't make sense to me that Google would now dismantle Google+. Google+ isn't an added-on product with an off switch you can flip in a moment, such as Google Reader. It is now truly baked in to the very infrastructure of almost all of online Google.

I'll save the reasons why that is for below, but suffice it to say for now that turning off Google Reader was like removing a sock. Dismantling Google+ would be more like ripping out a person's nervous system."

Here is the whole heady post from Mark Traphagen.

<!-- Place this tag in your head or just before your close body tag. --><script type="text/javascript" src=""></script><!-- Place this tag where you want the widget to render. --><div class="g-post" data-href=""></div>​
Aug 7, 2013
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Here is another take on this subject:

The Impending Demise of Google+?

There is also some speculation as to how Google+’s ‘retirement’ will impact on Google’s overall direction, with Danny Sullivan saying it will likely follow Facebook’s path towards more fragmented and specialised services and away from the singular everything-to-everyone unified system Google+ seemed intended to be. This would mean Google’s move to create separate apps for Hangouts and photos would have been a prophetic one, perhaps an early indication of the loss of faith in Google+’s centralised approach.
I think it is abundantly clear to Google, as it has been to many marketers, that Google+ as a social network has truly and irrevocably failed. What happens next is something I suspect even Google itself hasn’t yet figured out, and I expect many different things will continue to be tried and discarded before Google ever finds its holy grail of social data – if indeed it ever does.

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