trapped – Stay N Alive

Google Changes the Way You Read My Feeds – You Still Have no Control

Louis Gray just reported a new way Google is trying to control the problem of mine and Louis’s and Robert Scoble and Mashable, and more of the more active feeds and streams on Google Buzz taking over the streams of our followers.  The problem that was occuring is that for those with a lot of followers, their posts would continue to dominate the streams of those following them because every time someone commented or liked the post, it would go right back to the top of your feed.  While I understand the problem, and agree there needs to be a fix, I argue Google is trying to fix this the wrong way.

The way Google decided to fix it is now they decide, based on some sort of algorithm, how often my feeds get thrown up to the top of your stream.  This ensures no active user will ever fully dominate your stream.  However, what if we want to consume this data?  The problem is Google is the one making that choice for you, not giving you the power to make that choice yourself, and I think that’s a very wrong approach.

Rather than Google making that choice for us, they need to focus on lists, the way FriendFeed and Facebook do it, and the way over 400 million people are familiar with.  This is the natural flow – if someone is too noisy, you take them out of one list and put them in another.  Let us choose which list is the default.  Give us an easy way to assign people we follow into different lists.  This isn’t that difficult a solution for someone Google’s size, and gives the users absolute, full control, rather than taking it away from them to make the decision on how active their feeds are.  This needs to be their 100% focus right now to keep my attention.

The way Google is approaching this is wrong.  I really hope they change their focus to lists, open up the flood wall, but give us filters, privacy controls, and put the control back in the users’ hands.  Don’t take our power away from us Google.

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