Google shuttering Google+ has nothing really to do with a data breach… that happened in March 2018, even though that’s how most are reporting it. It is going away because it never made critical mass, and that’s not its fault.
We failed Google+! We stuck with Facebook when there was a better alternative that was (somewhat) less intrusive, and less demanding of our personal data (because they already had a lot of it).
These days Facebook seems a necessary evil, especially if you’re a developer of in business.
For some people Facebook IS THE INTERNET.
And in developing nations, Facebook is fostering this idea… they are basically trying to be the AOL of the past where users will log in and be contained to a single system that only lets in information it wants on its network.
So I think the data-breach is NOT the reason, Google makes it pretty clear in their blog post that it’s low consumer use compared to the cost of maintaining it. The data breach was a non-breach, yes there was the chance of it, but Google says it can’t see that anyone actually took advantage of a the vulnerability.
While I haven’t used it a lot in recent times, I will miss Google+. With it and Path going, it’s a sad time. Sure Twitter had up and comers; like Plurk (it was never going to go anywhere with a name like that), Alpha, Mastodon, et al, but they exist/ed as mere clones of the original.
Google+, Path, Ello, etc, offered alternatives presenting their individual and different fundamental ethos to Facebook. Google+ fast became about communities, Path was about close groups like friendship groups or family, and Ello was trying to be an ad-free Facebook who wasn’t interested in your data, they just wanted to give you a space on the internet, their plan was to make their money selling premium services that you could take or leave. But like the others, there was no critical mass for any of them and that was the downfall. Even poor MySpace 2.0 couldn’t get anyone back.
It seems Facebook has won and now has us all. We’ve forgotten how to use the Internet and we’re happy in our enclave of those who agree with everything we say (even when we are very wrong at times).
I don’t see a way forward and I believe Facebook is bad for the future of humanity. But at the moment, it’s what we have.