Google is chasing Facebook like Wile E. Coyote chases the Roadrunner.

 

 

Except Google’s not doing as well as the coyote.

Predictably, though, it keeps on trying.

From the Wall Street Journal:

 

There’s No Avoiding Google+

Google is challenging Facebook by using a controversial tactic: requiring people to use the Google+ social network.

The result is that people who create an account to use Gmail, YouTube and other Google services—including the Zagat restaurant-review website—are also being set up with public Google+ pages that can be viewed by anyone online. Google+ is a Facebook rival and one of the company’s most important recent initiatives as it tries to snag more online advertising dollars . . .

Both Facebook and Google make the vast bulk of their revenue from selling ads. But Facebook has something Google wants: Facebook can tie people’s online activities to their real names, and it also knows who those people’s friends are. Marketers say Google has told them that closer integration of Google+ across its many properties will allow Google to obtain this kind of information and target people with more relevant (and therefore, more profitable) ads.

 

As one Google+ user says, Google is “trying too hard to compete with Facebook, and if people aren’t going to share willingly, they’ll make them share unwillingly.”

The Journal reports that the new data-grab is “controversial within Google,” but the corn is off the cob at this point.

 

Google executives say more integration is coming. “Google+ is Google,” says Vice President Bradley Horowitz. “The entry points to Google+ are many, and the integrations are more every day.”

 

In other words, brace yourselves, folks. It’s just gonna get worse from here.

 


John R. Carroll, who also writes at Campaign Outsider and It's Good to Live in a Two-Daily Town, is a media analyst and mass communication professor at Boston University.
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