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Tech Monday, October 10th 2011 at 2:38 pm

Google+ Active Use Down 60%

Despite seeing a 1269% boost when it opened access to everyone, rival to the Facebook throne Google+ has now dropped off a little. According to numbers from Chitika Insights, Google+ has lost about 60% of its active users. While the accounts still exist, they just haven’t been used in ages –like mine for example. This means that although Google+ is populated, it is populated largely by tumbleweeds.

In the beginning, when Google+ was invite only, it managed to garner a lot of attention by being generally inaccessable. Everyone was clamouring for invites and pouring over the features. That exitement appears to have carried over to the public launch date, but not very far beyond. Breaking through Facebook’s strong but-this-is-what-I’m-familiar-with defenses may have proven harder than previously thought.

Still, Google+ is probably doing a favor to social networking by simply existing, so long as it continues to do that. Out of fear of losing users to Google+, Facebook has made some moves to improve itself by mimicking Google+ features as well as by making its privacy settings a little more transparent. It is also worth considering that this drop in active use may be the real beginning of Google+. By virtue of launching a social network during the social network Golden Age, (debatably) Google+ was bound to see a huge influx of people who were just interested in any prospective not-Facebook. Now with those people clearing out, Google+ can cater to the remaining active, presumably committed users and grow to be something special in its own right.

Given the nature of the social networking beast, it is going to be hard to try and declare a winner while Google+ and Facebook are still both out there. Google+ also has the benefit of being backed by one of the most influential companies shaping the Internet landscape. As such, it is shoehorned into all kinds of services people already use and isn’t going anywhere. For the meantime, I’m just going to continue hardly using Google+ or Facebook until something convinces me to do otherwise and with both still on the table, bumping up against each other, there’s a good chance that might actually happen.

(via The Inquirer)

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