How Are You Using Google +?

There has been a lot of buzz about Google +’s new branded pages. We’ve heard of a number of Federal agencies who have jumped on the band wagon and created pages. My question is how are you making your decision to move to Google+ and how are you using these pages. Please take a moment to complete my Twtpoll on the topic. Once you vote you can see how others have responded. Thanks!

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Andrew Krzmarzick

Anecdotally, we’re using Google+ Hangouts more than any other feature. We set up a Google+ page, but not really sure what to do with it…eager to hear other accounts from folks.

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Lovisa Williams

@Andrew I have been getting more requests from people to join a Google Hangout instead of a webinar. Too bad access from a Government computer is not possible.

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Judith Jordet

I tried Google plus and did not like it at all because of lack of privacy. What ever name you use for Google plus will be automatically changed on all Google products automatically. Therefore, it becomes impossible to have two accounts, one private one professional. Also, if you mention in a private email a sunburn, then you get advertizing in the sidebar for suntan lotion, when I emailed someone from another country I got an offer of a free trip to that country if I fill out a survey. After two months I could not take it and erased all the photos and emails stuck in those isolating circles.

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Faye Newsham

So far, I can’t evaluate because, much like @Kate below, not only is my work computer specific to IE7 but even worse and even more insurmountable (I have a home computer with IE 8) I can’t get an account because Google+ does not approve of my name! Heaven forfend, I use a second middle name commonly instead of my first given name. I’ve been “Faye” since I was 9 and I’m not changing that for anyone. Google+ fail.

~Faye

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Lovisa Williams

I did an informal survey a while back about what issues people had regarding access to social media. Some of the major barriers to access were the current browsers we are on (IE 6 or 7 if you are lucky!), lack of support for HTML 5 and lack of choice in a browser. Google+ for prefers Chrome (imagine that!). Not sure if you can even access it from Firefox or a modern version of IE. The chasm between what we need to use and what we are allowed to use is continuing to grow.

This is something Federal CIO Steven VanRoekel is aware of. He is committed to helping to bridge this divide. One of the first things we will be doing is getting the Federal Web Managers Council, the Sub Council for Social Media and the CIO Council together for a joint meeting. We hope this will be the first of many more meetings to come. One of the top issues for discussion is how can we work together to provide a stable and secure operating environment that also meets the ever changing business needs of our respective agencies.

Oh yeah and we have those pesky guidance papers from NIST about the Federal Desktop Core Configuration (FDCC) and the Trusted Internet Connections (TIC) guidance to abide by too. This adds a level of complexity to solving these issues, but they are vital to our future success as agencies and as a government.

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Lovisa Williams

@david Would you be willing to share your lessons learned? I think there are a number of us who would be interested. We would want to know, who is your intended community for engagement, how are you using it, what kind of content are you posting there, how do you ensure people know you are a real government site, how do you administer the account, how do you cover accessibility issues and what general advice do you have for agencies who are just getting started. Did I miss any other questions you guys might be interested in knowing? Oh, wait! I also want to know how are you measuring success with Google+.

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