I’m On The Google Buzz

I was very skeptical about Google Buzz when it first launched last week. Yes, I was that guy saying “do we really need another social networking tool?”. Of course, I was also that guy who didn’t like the idea of Twitter either… but now totally adores it. After getting into it for a few days now, I’m starting to feel the same way about Buzz too.

Google Buzz: Making Twitter Seem Less Good

Google Buzz: Making Twitter Seem Less Good

Buzz comes across as being exceedingly similar in concept and execution as Twitter, the only difference being that it doesn’t fall over every 5 minutes. In fact, it strikes me as a better implementation of an identical thing except now I can hook up everything I read, see and do into a single account as opposed to micro-blogging it in 140 words or less. Honestly, I feel a little sad for Twitter and can’t but wonder if Buzz is going to be the Facebook to their MySpace and eradicate them completely (albeit Twitter doesn’t look like a dog vomited on your screen). Poor Twitter hasn’t even had a chance to monetize itself yet. And does anyone even still use MySpace these days? It’s just so 20th century.

So Buzz is pretty cool although it does make me concerned about my privacy in a way that Twitter never did. I don’t really know if that concern is justified (I went into my account and turned off a lot of stuff) but just the fact that it links into my GMail account and Google profile is a little… disconcerting. Using it on my iPhone also gives me the creepy feature to be able to activate GPS and not only tell people my current location but also read all nearby “buzzers” (take note Internet! I coined the phrase first here!). I now know what Random Guy X is up to 3 blocks down the road from where I work. For some reason that just gives me the chills. I guess I’m reminded of the fact that it only takes one madman with a pick-axe to ruin my day.

I also feel like my brain is going to explode from information overload at some point. Blogs, Twitter, Facebook, Buzz… so much to read, so much to say, so many random people to stalk. At least I don’t have to worry about MySpace any more.

Anyhoo, if you fancy hooking up with me on G’Buzz (as they say on the street) then you can find my profile here. More than likely I’ll just ask annoying questions or make sarcastic comments every so often but then what else is social networking for?

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  1. Longasc says:

    Can’t help, but I still prefer Twitter. Buzz comes in when you want to discuss something in detail, which is almost impossible in Twitter (140 chars) or ends in one of my endless tweet barrages and maybe someone feeling insulted for reasons I cannot immediately recognize.

    I disabled most of my automatic updates – like Picasa uploads. And by god, please never ever connect Buzz with Twitter. There are addons that do that.

    P.S.: Your pic on Twitter is so extremely Scottish, I am sure your ancestors/clan would be proud of it!

    • Gordon says:

      I like Twitter a lot. It seems more friendly and less life consuming. The idea of linking everything together into one account seems a little intrusive to me. Just like you, I stopped people from seeing my Picasa uploads etc. It all just seems a bit creepy.

  2. Brian Inman says:

    Glad to see you jump on board with Buzz. It is way better than Twitter for alot of reasons, but until more people jump on board you still have to use twitter.

  3. ogrebears says:

    I don’t like buzz. When i log in to gmail i want my mail not buzz. The fact that it is part of gmail and not something independent make it feel like google trying to shove it down the throats of there user to get them to use it.

  4. Andrew says:

    I don’t see the point of Twitter, but don’t hate it in principle. Buzz, on the other hand, can go to hell and die.

    My loathing comes from how they rolled it out: it is an opt-out service with a misleading “off” button. Now, I know Google has addressed a boatload of privacy concerns, but they had a single chance to win me over, and they blew it big time by making their service dishonest spyware by default.

    Anyways – for a less vitriol-filled take on why Buzz rubbed me the wrong way, see here:

  5. Rhii says:

    I have always not-liked Twitter, much like I go out of my way to not-like Facebook. So when the “we have Buzz now” message popped up on my screen in gmail one day, I said NO I don’t want to activate Buzz.

    I’m pretty sure they Buzzed me anyway, though, because I keep having creepy incidents like getting my old landlord as a follower. Why do I even have a follower, I said NO BUZZ! :(

    I want it to stop, and if I can’t figure out how to make it stop, I will have to abandon the world’s best webmail service. Geez, Google, quit while you’re ahead…

  6. Elleseven says:

    @Andrew – thank you very much for the link. So many people at work are asking me to send it to them now as well.

  7. Ninjeroo says:

    I am not a social media fanatic for the sake of it but I wouldn’t say that I’d stay away from Buzz in the long term. That said, right now Buzz serves little purpose to me: Very few of my friends have Gmail accounts and 90% of the ones *automatically* added to my Buzz friends list by Google I would not have chosen to add. As such, the numbers talk of its popularity within hours has little meaning to me personally. I can reach/be reached better via Twitter.

    On a personal level, I hate the way Google attempt to muscle their way into the social media scene. Buzz is ugly and impractical at the moment but now doubt does it function as a wedge and will be improved further.

    Will it give Twitter a run for its money? Undoubtedly. But it’s not all doom. If Twitter can avoid to engage in a series of wrong business decisions such as committed by the people behind MySpace, then I believe it’s not punching above its weight in the fight for market share against Google.

    • Gordon says:

      A lot of people have been very alienated by Google’s lack of respect for privacy, I must admit. Some of my co-workers hate the concept of Buzz just because of it. Big mis-step by Google, imo.

      Buzz is fun but I’m not sure I will be able to maintain both it and Twitter. Too much social networking for just one guy! :)

  8. Rhii says:

    Just an update, I followed Andrew’s link and while doing the recommended steps to DeBuzzify myself, I noticed a red link with a !! symbol beside it which claims to delete your public profile and remove all your following/followed people. Is this the actual unenrollment that they didn’t offer before?

    Hope so!

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