There is going to be a change soon on Google’s recently launched social network, Google Plus.
As of now, users of this social network are allowed to keep their profiles private if they desire to do so.
However, come 31st July and these private profiles will be deleted. This move is likely to upset users, who wish to keep their profiles private as they are allowed to do on Facebook.
A statement issued by Google explains the purpose behind this decision. It says, “The purpose of Google Profiles is to enable you to manage your online identity. Today, nearly all Google Profiles are public. We believe that using Google Profiles to help people find and connect with you online is how the product is best used. Private profiles don’t allow this, so we have decided to require all profiles to be public.”
It should be a consolation to users to know, that the only data they are required to provide on the public profile includes the full name and gender of the user. The user will have the ability to delete or hide any other information from the profile.
Another point in defense of Google is the fact, that even with Facebook, the users name gender and profile picture of the user is freely available to all, even with private settings since the last year or so.
Mark Zuckerberg had then explained that “The site has actually never worked in a way that you sign up and the only people who can see you or your information were your friends. The reason for that is … if only the people who were already your friends on the site could see your information then it would be really difficult to connect with your actual friends and actually be able to have meaningful interactions with them.”
Hence, even though Google has decided to disallow private profiles, they are not actually affecting the user’s privacy any more than Facebook is already doing.