Right up front, let me say that I have enjoyed the clean and uncluttered look of Google+ over any of the other social media services. I also greatly appreciate how easy it is to maintain your privacy settings, as opposed to another well-known social media platform that obfuscates privacy controls and leaves members wondering what they are exposing, and where. The Circles help you visualize exactly who you are sharing content with. This sharing is easy as well. Drag an item (a link, a photo, etc.) to the text window, and your share is linked or uploaded and inserted as part of the post. Limit-free post editing, text styling and other perks are icing on the cake.
Sharing is also the key to an epic failure of Google+: where exactly is the sharing?
G+ makes it impossible to share from other devices or sites. Sure, I can share a photo out of the gallery on my Android phone within seconds, but I would expect it to. But what about my WordPress sites? We are all waiting for an API to develop plugins so we can cross-post from our blogs over to our G+ profiles or business pages. This is a necessity. If I can post directly to half a dozen others automatically (Twitter, Tumblr, LinkedIn, Facebook, etc.), does anyone think I need to (or want to) remember to visit my G+ account to manually update pages over there? Hardly.
And this is just from a WordPress standpoint. Multiply this by the number of other applications, social media platforms or bookmarking sites, traditional websites, or even sharing services such as AddThis, and you can see the problem: it is too difficult to post to Google+. If it is too difficult, users will not bother to update at G+ at all, and eventually abandon it, driving those members back to other social media platforms.
Google is shooting itself in its feet right now with this. After an enthusiastic launch, G+ has struggled to gain a mainstream following. The cross-platform sharing API should have launched on day one. Google has cut off one major social media artery by crippling sharing in this manner.
If this keeps up, Google+ will be yet another grand social experiment along the lines of Orkut, another long-forgotten Google-acquired social media product. The sad part is, G+ is too good to let that happen to. Despite G+ being a work in progress, it has done well so far with integrating different services and Google products together. And it has a wider acceptance than Orkut ever had.
Let’s just hope enough of us make a noise and Google releases a proper sharing API for Google+. It needs to happen before G+ becomes another footnote in Internet history.