The Washington Post today spoke of Google Buzz and it’s early launch. One of the reasons they speculate that this was pushed off the ledge so soon was to compete with Twitter and Facebook. Seeing as Google has been trying for a while to purchase Twitter I would compare this sudden launch to be similar to the many big airlines swallowing up the smaller competitors. Merging and buyout does not necessarily mean better products. I miss having my cookie on the Midwest flights. The larger seats and better service will never make up for the lower prices that can be offered. Sad, but I never thought Midwest was all that expensive.
I have pretty much grown up with technology. Not the way the Y generation has – but truly growing with it from electric typewriters to multitasking computers so small they fit in your back pocket. I have seen trends come and go. There are a few that I still miss (it was fun making wreaths out of punch cards) and those that I was happy died (Palm Pilots were my largest enemy!) and still it never ceases to amaze me when a solid product is made worse by trying to take on too many features. Facebook started as a fun site to keep track of friends. It was geared at the younger generation and then the adults moved in and started to reconnect with old friends. Tween’s were appalled that the adults would even consider moving in on their territory. Facebook noticed its popularity and decided to start making ‘updates’. I have yet seen one of their updates make a better product. It is usually worse and takes until the next update to figure out.
But I am getting away from the point I wanted to make. Twitter as a social marketing tool is working great. It has a strong following and use by everyone from high school students to President Obama. It reports on injustice and tragedy through-out the world. Would adding a competitor at this point be a good solution? Would I now be forced to not only tweet, but buzz as well? Will it get to the point when I spend more time reading about people and places in 140-character increments so much that I forget how to read entire articles? I think it is time for Google to come up with their own idea. Leave Twitter be and move away from that form of social media. Surely there is an area that you haven’t touched. How about a new form of portfolio system that doesn’t charge. The ads it generates could pay for the site. It would also be a great way to gain back some of the younger audiences. In the job market today portfolios are huge and it always seems to be difficult to find a place to create one that you can take with you when you graduate.
Google has good tools for calendar and forums, portfolios just seem to fit right in….I think I may be on to something. In any case, I think updating Google tools and general system coordination would be a better use of their time than to try to make my life more complicated by adding another place to come up with clever status updates.