After a long wait, Google Plus finally arrived in April 2011. It is part of Google’s incremental approach to going “social”.
Various red herrings were the subject of much intense debate while the internet and social media world awaited a new social product from Google. Google Circles was one such false lead. (In fact, it was a discontinued beta product dating back to 2006 or 2007). There were other equally incorrect conjectures, some of which I wrote about, as I am as curious as other Google-watchers.
Social Family Identity
Now that Google Plus is here, it is uncertain where it will fit into the overall Google social product family, so to speak. The short-lived Google Hotpot was merged into Google Places after a brief run of only six months. The fate of Google Buzz is not questioned, yet it is confusing for webmasters to know which product to offer, Buzz or Plus.
My minor Google Research observation
A peculiar situation, no more reliable than any oracle or augur, about the fate of Google Buzz came to light for me today. I was browsing the Google Research blog and website. I noticed that the contact choices for Google Research were “subscribe to blog”, “follow us on Twitter” and “follow us on Google Buzz”. However, the URL for the Google Buzz option returned an Error 404, Not Found.
Shortly after, I took a quick glance at the Official Google Research account on Twitter. I noted that a Google Buzz profile was the URL contact provided for Google Research. However, this was the very same Google Buzz URL as the one listed on the Google Research blog site. And of course, it also returned an Error 404 Page Not Found.
This is merely an observation. It might not have any significance whatsoever with respect to the status of Google Buzz. I have been wrong before!
UPDATE: July 2011
I received a very courteous message from Google Research about the error in the Buzz URL on both blog and Twitter profile. Google Research promptly updated the Google Buzz URL to a valid one in both locations. (I later invited Google Research to join Google+, but was informed that organizations were not yet allowed to have Google+ profiles).
My earlier concerns about the imminent demise of Google Buzz based on Google Research activity were not appropriate at this time.