Google+: Should I Stay or Should I Go?

Even though this week has been hella busy, I finally did manage to finish a book last night, The Road to Ruin by Donald E. Westlake, the 11th in the series about Dortmunder, the hapless burglar. Last week I mentioned how Westlake is a comfort author and this book didn’t disappoint in that regard. It was good to return to the characters of Dortmunder and those of his gang of misfits and chuckle as they flubbed yet another caper.

On Sunday, I mentioned how I was trying to juggle all the bowling pins of applications without losing my shit as I began exploring Google +. Since then, I’ve learned through the author of Beth Fish Reads, that the overlords at Google have decided that you must use your real name by July 31 on Google +.  Now I could go into a long diatribe about why I use the name “Unfinished Person” and how I’ve built up a persona online over the last few years, but bottom line, I believe that Google is forcing me to do something I don’t want to do — and I don’t have to do.

I am glad, though, that Google is taking care of this in the Beta version and not deciding to deal with it later like Facebook. At one point, I did have two Facebook profiles, one for the real me and the other for this blog, until Facebook “forced me” to transfer my blogging profile to a fan page. At least, I know where I am with Google from the start.

So this leaves me with the question: Do I leave Google + on principle? Or do I stay and stick it out because I’ve already “collected” 70-plus (no pun intended) people (some with blogging pseudonyms like myself right now) and I was just beginning to develop some relationships with some new people? I won’t make a quick decision – like I’ve done in the past with defriending people on Facebook and then regretting it, then adding them back…then blah blah blah…(oh, come on, like it’s never happened to you). However, I naturally will make this decision by the end of the month since Google is “forcing my hand.”

The caveat with all of this is it’s my choice whether to stay or go. No one forced me to sign up for Facebook or for Twitter or for the myriad of applications that I do use. If anything else, this “experience” is continuing to teach me why do I do what I do? What’s the point? I think it’s good for all of us in the blogging world and, hell, in the real world, to examine what we are doing instead of being mindless cogs in the machine.

So what do you think? Should I stay or should I go? Or maybe you don’t have a proverbial dog in this fight. That’s all right too. How do you manage your online personas, if you have them, and how do you manage your own identity, period, online?

9 responses to “Google+: Should I Stay or Should I Go?

  1. I didn’t know facebook didn’t let you use you use your online persona. My account was as bookmagic deb and I was never told I had to use my real name. I say ditch G+. Having that and facebook seems redundant

  2. I’ll be honest-google+ is already boring me. I don’t like how random people can find me & friend me in their circle without my approval. I can hide or block them later, but it’s annoying all the same.

  3. How, in fact, would Google+ know that “Unfinished Person” isn’t your real name after all? Like, does it have the ‘name police’ (much like the ‘The Dream Police’ – which came to mind after your earworm, “Should I Stay Or Should I Go?”). What about e.e. cummings? And there is at least one well known actor whose first (or real given name) is merely a letter of the alphabet (without the period). How does it know my name isn’t Double 0 Dozo? What about Moon or Dweezil Zappa?

    Big Brother be damned, I say. Stay until you get kicked off the bus (or should that be, “island” these days?).


  4. Pingback: Google Plus, ¿el nuevo rival de Facebook? - Siskatec

  5. I just added the +1 thing to my blog. Figuring that out was like going through college statistics all over again. Now that the little button is there, I’m not even sure what, if anything, I will gain from it. I felt the pressure. Everyone has the plus, so I needed the plus. I think the whole “real name” thing is certainly lame for businesses and many bloggers, too.

  6. You know I have my issues. I left G+ a couple of days ago. When it’s out of beta, I may reconsider. I thought it was best to back away earlier than later.

  7. “I think it’s good for all of us in the blogging world and, hell, in the real world, to examine what we are doing instead of being mindless cogs in the machine.”

    Amen. I blog as myself and have no alternate persona, but the last thing I need is another something (Google +, Twitter, etc.) to distract my already distracted attention and fill up more of my time that could be spent writing or (gasp) actually sitting outside or interacting with people in person. I like Facebook to a point and blogs to a slightly obsessive point, but I feel like you have to choose where to exert your efforts. (I realize the case is different for you, seeing your popularity and following.)

    Call me old, cranky and behind the times, but I refuse to be a “cog” and spend all my time connected. There are a lot of times I feel left out, but I pick and choose my battles.

  8. My blogging identity and personal identity are pretty much the same for me, honestly. I have my facebook, which is pretty much for friends and family. I don’t have a fan page (I really don’t have enough readers lol) Twitter and my blog is where I connect with all my bookish friends. I’ve considered going to Google +, just to see what all the fuss is about. Though I have an ‘online persona’ I guess you could say, S.Leighanne is really my name, my first and middle (Samantha Leighanne) So the name thing wouldn’t bother me.
    But for you its different. These people that you’ve begun to connect with, if you were able to switch to another social networking site with them, I would just give it up. Since you’re built your persona and are pretty well known, it might get confusing for some followers and such. Just a thought! :]