Google+ offers users the ability to customize their world through the use of circles. You “circle” the people that you want to follow on Google+ to add their posts to your stream. Circles are also the way that you group contacts to allow you to determine who sees certain information.
To add more content to your stream on Google+ you “circle” people. Circling is not necessarily a two-way street. You can circle someone who does not circle you back. This is quite common when you circle popular users or people from the Suggested Users List. Since many folks are circled by large numbers, it is impossible for them to circle everyone bac.
The more people you circle, the more content will end up in your stream. Google+ places a current maximum of 5000 circles which can include both other users and pages.
A great thing about G+ is that you can also “uncircle” people or pages that you are no longer interested in seeing. G+ does NOT notify users when they are uncircled by someone else.
Circles are also the key to managing how your posts are seen on Google+. Default posts are sent to “Public” which means that anyone on the internet can see what you are posting. “Public” posts are also searchable by engines and will appear in your friends personalized searches on Google.com.
You can limit posts to “Your Circles” or “Extended Circles” or even to a particular circle or person. This allows you to share content or information that you do not particularly want shared in the public stream.
Organizing circles and determining who to circle are the keys to improving your Google+ experience and we will examine those topics in the next installments.
Be sure to circle me on Google+ and let me know you read the column.