Tech thoughts: Google goes Facebook with Google+, while MySpace goes, um, somewhere

This week’s been quite busy on the tech news front, particularly in the areas of social networking:

  • Google’s announced (and allowed limited-time beta-testing invites for) its new social network “Google+.” Much like Facebook, the usual social networking features are present here (all cobbled together/based on existing Google features), though with some Google touches. Instead of “Like”-ing others, you “+1” others (per the “+1” button that Google now uses on its search results), and so forth. While Google’s tried social stuff before (the ill-fated Buzz and Wave), this time they’re going all-out to try to compete with the mighty Facebook.
  • MySpace, on the other hand, has just been sold by Murdoch’s News Corporation to some marketing company for a fraction of the price Murdoch paid for MySpace. MySpace’s fortunes have really taken a dive since Facebook came along, and this just seems to show it’s going down for the count (musicians using MySpace aside). Between never caring for MySpace in the first place (a reason I never got into Facebook until very recently) and not caring much for News Corp’s business practices, I’m not exactly getting too worked up over this. Still, it shows how fast things change online (five years ago, MySpace was “the new hotness”)…
  • Finally, as long as we’re talking about Facebook, last weekend I bit the bullet and set up a Facebook Page for Anthony’s Notes. So far, I’ve not gotten very many “Likes,” but at least I have a presence on Facebook now. Even if I *did* join just in time for Google to announce a Facebook competitor. I admit I’m not so optimistic about Google’s chances (given the previous flops of Buzz/Wave and Facebook’s entrenched base). There’s also some privacy concerns about Google setting up a social network (on top of the truckloads of data it already handles), as much as I like Google. Still, any serious competition to Facebook is fine with me…

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