Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Find People to Hangout with on Google+

If you’ve ever participated in a Hangout on Google+ you know that the video conferencing feature works great! You can hangout with video and audio with up to ten people while also chatting and sharing video. Hangout also knows who is talking and puts them front and center.  There’s no awkward handing over and collecting the microphone.  It feels like others are really right there with you.  


The problem with Hangout though is that it is hard to know who is hanging out and it is hard for people to know if you are hanging out.  I wrote to Google and suggested that under the “Hangout” option there should be a list of people in your circles that are hanging out. I also suggested that you should be able to give your Hangouts a title.  They haven’t incorporated my feedback yet, but in the meantime, there’s one solution that may work.
http://jennylu.files.wordpress.com/2011/07/google-hangout.png
Joyce Valenza, Judy O’Connell, Cathy Jo Nelson, Linda Nitsche, Rob Darrow and Chris Betcher                     
in a hangout hosted by Jenny Luca

Where to hangout at Google + provides you with a time-stamped list of who is hanging out or who is about to hang out along with the topic that participants will be discussing.  Currently the most common topic seems to be, “testing out hangouts” and the topic search feature is not yet active, but the idea is right.  One of the more interesting Hangouts was: Steve Ward - Host & Executive Producer of VH1 Tough Love talking about Sex, Love, Dating & Relationships.  I can definitely see this as a great way for television shows to immediately get on-the-street perspectives.  Very cool!


We currently have a list of Twitter Chats which you can see here.  When are we going to start a Hangout schedule?  I see this working by setting a time for the chat to begin and if more than ten people join, the chat organizer provides a link to a second chat, and third, and so on being able to have intimate conversations with each group. 

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