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Ex-Google Employee Says Google+ Ruined the Company, Social is the Only Focus

Google+ has certainly marked a change in how Google is looking to do their business, but has the social networking attempt ruined the company? One ex-Googler says so. James Whittaker, who once worked for Microsoft before going to Google, has recently spouted off about his last few months at Google before returning to Microsoft, and it doesn’t sound good:

“The Google I was passionate about was a technology company that empowered its employees to innovate. The Google I left was an advertising company with a single corporate-mandated focus.”

Whittaker went on to describe two Googles, the one before Google+ and the one “after.” After the “social” battle cry went out, Google’s famed “20%” went down the drain as the company was single minded in their focus. All doom and gloom for sure, but not too hard to believe. Google+ has been a huge push for Google as of late so this isn’t too far out of the realm of possibility. One interesting note though, Whittaker posted his scathing comments on a Microsoft blog, rather than a personal one. We know that a lot of the community here uses G+ heavily, but how about your friends and family? Is Google+ already a sinking ship?

Via: MyFox8

Cheers GreeKNastY!

  • http://pau.lc/ Paul Chambers

    I tried Google+ for as long as it took to look around and haven’t thought about it since. So sinking ship? I never even thought of it as a dinghy. 

  • HotwingCindy

    Tru dat

  • jtwildman1

    It would be nice, but my only friend is my wife as no one else cares about it. Sorry Google, Facebook has this market put your focus elsewhere.

  • Taglogical

    Facebook is garbage; Google+ is garbage.  These ‘social networking’ endeavors do exactly the opposite (of social networking); it’s jokes that people don’t see it (or perhaps are too conceded/inconsiderate to see it).

  • Hans Wee

    i have friends who work at google or worked there.  and what i’ve been told is that theres definitely 2 halves of google.  the people who got rich from earlier who do nothing, and the newer people.

    having been on their campus (and interviewing there and failing) i do hvae to say that part of why people want to work there is because they get to work on random potentially useless products as their job.

    on the other hand you also get a lot of half baked projects that people never really finish since to keep them happy google would let people just move around to anything.  so a lot of the engineers their complain that they actaully have product management now who wants to … uh polish their products and cater to actual users.

    i mean they have a ton of products that just are totally random that never worked.  they are focusing now and well they are going to lose some people who just wanted to work on whatever random unicorn project they watned to do.  but in the end it will probably be better if the company focuses more on actually competing in fields that people know work.  might hurt innovation, but it will make things more polished.

  • BaalKilller

    I’m a heavy android user, 3 devices with me all the time, I dont like G+ and wont like it (why more social networks?), I live at Colombia and very few people uses it here, it is by no means a competitive challenger to say facebook or twiter, which by the way everybody over here uses, including people without pc, phones or internet….

  • Beiber

    Tried google+ from beta on. Just deleted it this week. Hardly anyone I know uses it, and nobody in my world has any plans to even give it a try. Better start looking for something else google, + is not the future.

    • http://profiles.google.com/adamtruelove Adam Truelove

      You deleted Google+?  You’d better tell Google about this.  I hope they backed it up.  You haven’t deleted any other of Google’s services have you?  ;)

      • Google

        there is a google+ app smartass. 

        • Slapi

          He was being sarcastic

        • MKader17

          You still wouldn’t delete it.

  • Liderc

    I tried G+ for a while and I just never got into it, I followed some people I was interested in hearing from but it just never seemed to flourish into anything.  I only use it now to instantly upload my photos from my phone.

    I’m not sure how they could improve upon it, I think Facebook has just cornered the market so well that no one wants to leave.  Until Facebook just screws up completely, they’ll continue to reign and then there will be a void to fill with another social experience.

    As for Google changing, I think he was mistaken.  Google has ALWAYS been just an advertising company.  They make 99% of their money from Adsense, so if he thought they were going to be some mecca for innovation then he just was buying into the hype. 

    I can’t imagine Google’s just focusing on G+ because even they know it’s not going to take a big share of the market until/if Facebook fails.  I’m sure they’re just trying to keep their finger on the pulse of the social network so that they can dive into it if there’s a spot to succeed in.  

  • Andrew

    My Google+ stream is going strong! Lots more interesting stuff than my “friends” on Facebook…

    • http://profiles.google.com/adamtruelove Adam Truelove

      Same here.  I use Facebook to keep in contact with friends.  But much like Twitter, that’s not the point of G+.  G+ is for following people or groups you’re interested in. It’s like a dynamic newsletter or RSS feed of information that you’re interested in. People compare it to FB all the time, but it’s much more like Twitter than FB.

      • Andrew

        Perfect explanation! :D

      • kixofmyg0t

        You dont have any friends that work out there guy. 

  • Towelie420

    I like google+..  it just seems that people are so blindly enslaved by Facebook that they aren’t willing to give anything else a chance..  I’m not being sexist here, but this is especially true with females.  They seem more reluctant to try anything else but Facebook.  
    Facebook has gotten even more petty lately.  Also, anyone who puts their children on the internet is just a bad parent.  A child should be able to make the decision as to whether or not they want be on the internet  when they reach a mature age.  Not EVERYONE wants to be on the internet.   That’s just my opinion.

    • Slapi

      I agree. I keep my baby out of the internet.

    • Guest

       I’m glad that you said you weren’t being sexist, because otherwise I might have mistakenly thought that you were!

  • MrWicket

    Facebook is where I go to see what friends and family are doing and talk/share more personal things.
    Twitter is a micro blog and really just a good place to get news about anything.
    Google Plus is a place to go an meet new people that share common interests. I have a few real life friends on there but most are inactive. Most the people in my circles are strangers from around the globe that share interests with me. I have quite a few people from the various Android blogs (androidcentral, droid-life, phandroid etc) in my circles as well both readers and staff alike so it is another way for me to get my android fix. :) Google+ is also nice because I think it brings the best of each of them into one package. So, do I think it’s a sinking ship? no! is it going to replace facebook/twitter? no! and that’s ok, because it’s not supposed to.

  • guest

    Google struggling to be more like Apple, control freak socialists!

  • Smooth918

    I like and use Google+ regularly, and no I don’t think of it as a sinking ship, there is room for both its not going anywhere. There is one thing that bothers me though, just about all of the great features that made G+ standout from Facebook, that little Thieving Mark Z. Joined G+ when we were still invite only, got the lay of the land and within a month or two incorporated similar if not the same features in the New and Improved Facebook.

    So now why would people want to leave when they have some of the same features under a different name on Facebook where they are comfortable. But all in all Google+ isn’t going anywhere, it will never go the route of Buzz and Wave. Google+ is the Grown Folk Social Project.

  • Booboolala2000

    Nothing turns me off more as a manager than someone who jumps around every two years, job to job
    There is no loyalty with this person.

    • Robert Greathouse

      Well, companies are rarely are loyal to their employees. So tit-for-tat.

      • Booboolala2000

        You are correct, but when an employer looks at a resume and sees a lot of bouncing around, it’s not a good first impression. Then in the interview, if they are a confirmed “Goldilocks” it makes it that much more difficult to get a positive review. Good companies do value productive and innovative employees, the others that don’t will be filtered out eventually. Word of Mouth does a lot for the type of employees you get knocking at your door.  

  • Blueballs

    I don’t use any of the crappy social sites. I prefer to mingle the old fashion way………………In person.

    • Smooth918

      You do realize this too is a social site that you’re engaging now, right! :-)

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002918282828 Christopher Grame

    It’s hard to speculate what goes on at google from an employee standpoint but if the company is trying to link everything into google+ to make things more convenient and add some competition to twitter/fb then so be it.  I don’t see how trying something new is associated with negativity.  But in the end it’s clearly BS.  Google is going hard on the android front (we all see this) and still being productive in other areas.  G+ needs a feature to really blow things up and attract the masses.

  • Michael Major

    Reasons why G+ might never catch on mainstream:
    1.  No one is on it, everyone I know is on FB.
    2.  I’ve tried to convince people to switch (I actually do like G+), but that’s like telling someone to switch between Windows/OSx.  Yeah, one might be better, but people just like what they are used to.
    3.  Claims.  G+ HAS to get more claims authentication working with sites/apps.  Even I want to abandon FB, but there are too many sites/apps that let me use FB credentials to quickly access them.

  • Medications

    Google+ will never be the level of social network that Facebook is, it’s not as user friendly and isn’t as visually appealing, and unless Facebook royally screws up the way MySpace did it will always be THE social network. If Google is trying to compete in that way it well never work and they are delusional. Google+ is more suited for business and tech world uses so they should gear it towards that. I’m annoyed that my GNex doesn’t sync with my Facebook contacts out of the box because Google is pushing G+ integration so hard, instead of being practical and realistic and working with Facebook rather than against them in that regard in order to please and suit the needs/wants of the average (majority) user. Google + users denouncing Facebook just come off as holier-than-though/too-cool-for-the-room toolbags with no sense of realism.

    • kulanapan

      Google+ is much more user friendly, AND more visually appealing. If people are actually interested in sharing content on the web, they’ll use Google+. If all they want to do is write dumb comments on other dumb comments, or post pictures of their cat, they’ll use Facebook.

      • Medications

        I’ve used Google+ and Facebook, which is where I came to the conclusion that Facebok is more user friendly and visually appealling.  I didn’t state that opinion blindly.  I’m not a techy or power user type and neither are my friends, I’m speaking for the majority of people that Google is probably targeting because I am part of that majority.  My friends have all said the same thing about Google+ which is why no one I know uses it.  Facebook has been fine for sharing pictures and event coordinating and sharing and everything, that’s mostly what I use it for.  That’s its main purpose.  Google+ hangouts and circles and all that are useful for obvious reasons, but it is not something I have any need or use for in my life, same goes for most of the people I know.  Facebook’s attempt at mirroring “circles” with being able to categorize your friends was stupid in my opinion and I’ve never used that function although I’m sure people do.  I just think Google is wasting time pushing Google+ as a social alternative to Facebook instead of working in tandem.

  • Aaron Burke

    As a matter of preference, I tend to enjoy using Google+ more than Facebook. Google+ still has a critical flaw in its adoption though: API support! It’s been out for HOW long now, and the only APIs available are to read public posts? Facebook and Twitter both have full APIs for just about everything (if not actually everything) you can do on their web interface, making full client apps possible without ever having to touch the web interface. Google+ doesn’t have that. If you want to use it, you need to use the web interface or their official app. There are no other options. I’d love a Twitter+Facebook+Google+ social media client app that allows me to post, read, comment, like/+1/retweet, favorite/share, etc., all brought into a single consolidated stream (bonus points if it can detect cross-network postings and handle that intelligently, but that’s a client-side issue). But Google just hasn’t made that possible. Until they do, Google+ will not take off like it should/could.

  • Soapinmouth

    This guy works for Microsoft now. He started at Microsoft got picked up by Google got promoted then got picked up by Microsoft again and promoted. There’s a chance this is all just bs to help him at Microsoft.

  • zapote21

     Is he butt hurt??  Waaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhh

  • Will Frame

    I tried to use Google+, but just as with others on here, I couldn’t get my friends to use it as much.

    Still, when mobile ads start showing up in my Facebook timeline on my phone, I will most definitely switch to Google+ if I can’t find a way to block them.That will be the end of Facebook for me. I think Google+ is a great product. It just seems to be lacking the adoption at this point.

  • richard melcher

    my favorite part of G+ is the “Whats Hot” section, I can spend a lot of time on there.

  • otter34

    Never used it and I only know one person that does. Sorry Google you were too late

  • dk81

    I only use G+ for the automatic photo upload and only because it came on the Gnex that way already.  I really like the idea of circles where I can manage who sees what and I would probably use social media a lot more if I knew anyone else that actually used G+.  That said I barely use facebook as it is and I’m not the type to run around cheerleading for all my friends to switch to G+.  Love the idea and everything it does but no one I know uses it on a daily basis.