Monday, January 14, 2013

Google Plus's Special Vanity Name URLs to Special Folks First


I'm not sure if you're aware, but Google+ (Google Plus) has started offering vanity URL names to "select" users recently.  Select that is, like brands, stars and athletes. (This seems to support my concerned perspective that Google is tuning the web for corporate profit.)  From what I can tell, ordinary folks aren't getting the offers yet.  But if you do, from what else I can tell, there will be some message off on the right side of your profile saying you have the option to choose a vanity URL for your Google+ profile or page.

But somewhere there's also some subtle text that says that they reserve the right to charge a fee for the vanity URL somewhere down the road.

But I'm not too worried about the fee charging. (No, I've not been offered a vanity URL for my own account or any of my pages.  Not sure why they would.  I'm small beans in the scheme of things.)

But there are ways around this, if you NEED some form of a cool looking G+ URL.

There's a website called "gplus.to" that let's you choose a vanity URL and gives you one.  They, or any other utility site like them, don't seem to be affiliated with Google and there is a downside.  The downside that was pointed out by Webination is that you're using this website's service and so when you provide the URL they give you, THEY get the traffic statistics before passing on your visitors to your G+ account/page.  (They own the URL)  And they list a few other negatives about using a third party traffic assist.

But one other website made a wonderful suggestion for those with real website/blogs, and that is "Just create an empty folder on your website and do a 301 redirect to your Google plus page."  (Webination).

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I've found it odd that Facebook in some ways, makes things easier and more appealing than Google+ has.  You'd think Google would want everyone flocking to their site.  But as a blogger, I have fantastic tools to auto-post to my Facebook pages and accounts while Google+ still is a holdout on automated posting.

Which again, sets off my "spider-sense," in as far as what they're up to and what plans they're slowly formulating for this social site called Google+.

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Hi - sorry for the confirmation but I need to weed out the noise from the well intended comments. Thanks for leaving a note... - Bruce