Christopher Chelpka

Google+, Mike Elgan, and the Future of the Internet

In order to reestablish the Internet as thee online social network, we need to study social network silos like Facebook and Twitter. Learning from them will allow us to build on their strongest features and avoid their worst.

But don’t forget Google+.

Though it’s being shut down, it is as important to learn from what fails as it is from what succeeds. Moreover, Google+ had many successes that were copied by others. And, at its peak, it achieved wider systemic integration with various aspects of the Internet—albeit the internet of Google—than Facebook or Twitter have ever achieved. For these reasons, Google+ deserves attention and analysis by who share the IndieWeb dream.

To get a taste of what I mean, read Mike Elgan’s, Goodbye, Google+: A eulogy for the last great social network.

Mike Elgan is a good person to write about this. Not only is he a longtime tech writer, he has been one of the most important users on Google Plus during all its ups and downs. And it was his advocacy of the platform that caused many to join in the first place. He understood what made it work. And why, for so many people at the time, it made sense move blogging and even emailing over to Google’s social network.

Elgan has now gone #backtotheblog and even has an account on Hi, @MikeElgan! But I’m glad he’s reflecting on what made Google+ work as a social network. The more we do that, the better positioned we will be for making the social network that is the Internet even better.