A majority of students and faculty said they are not interested in Google+, according to an informal poll designed to determine their awareness, interest and willingness to participate in the new social network.
Thirteen out of 20 University of La Verne students and faculty members polled last week were not only without a Google+ account, but were unaware of the service prior to being questioned.
Of those questioned, only four knew of Google+, but were uninterested in the service.
“It’s hard enough already to keep track of one social network,” said Ian Lising, assistant professor of speech and debate. “From what I could tell, (Google+) sort of appeals to the lowest common denominator of web users.”
If there is one company that has the credence to claim the crown of social network supremacy from Facebook, it is Google.
Google+ differs from its competition in that it does away with “friends” and instead has its users create “circles” based on their interests and connects them with others who share those interests.
While the service did receive a positive response from its open beta in June, survey numbers show that Google has a lot of work to do if they wish to make Google+ a credible service.
Many of those polled shared Lising’s sentiments.
“Google+ just doesn’t interest me right now,” sophomore communications major Patrick Rodriguez said. “I got a Facebook so I could interact with my friends. Google+ would need to get a lot bigger for me to try it.”
Even the few that have tried out Google+ did not speak fondly of it.
“I have Google+, I just don’t use it,” said Office of Admissions representative Adam Wu. “I already have Facebook and that’s more than plenty.”
All is not lost for Google’s fledgling social network, however.
Fifteen of the survey takers admitted to being optimistic about signing up for a Google+.
“Google has a lot of other things that benefit me like email and documents,” senior liberal studies major Yessenia Flores said. “Since they work with other stuff, I’d be willing to try (Google+).”
With recent radical changes to its interface, including a sidebar ticker, Facebook has risked alienating its users and some may be looking for an alternative.
“I’m tired of Facebook changing its face; it seems like it’s getting worse,” senior psychology major Brooke Fyfe said. “I’m interested to see if Google can do better.”
Still, even the new features of Google+ cannot convince the staunchest of those that have abstained from social networks to join the craze now.
“I’ve never been into social networks; I don’t have a Facebook and I don’t want Google+,” sophomore television broadcast major McKinley Pollock said.
The results of the survey reflect those who have yet to catch on to whatever it is that Google+ is offering.
Google is on the right track with offering distinct differences from Facebook features in order to stand out in a crowded atmosphere.
The question that remains, though, is whether people are ready to add another tab to their browser.
Julian Burrell can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.