…..'A sense of humour lends you poise, it gives you balance and it helps you to bend without breaking'…..

(HH Pujya Gurudev Swami Chinmayananda)

Menoggling [men-ogg-ling]; do you Go-Ogle?

Why do I prefer to Go the Ogle as opposed to any other form of 'look around'? Hmmmm,,, one of the things which has to be considered is how one operates when dealing with life in general.

For example, is one a 'clubby' or an 'observer', a 'wallflower' or a 'gottaknowthelatest', a collector  or a Keep-It-Simple-Silly.... Those who favour magazines and 'flicking thru' may be predisposed to the snip'n'clip media; those who have a need to always know the daily minutiae will probably favour booking phizog; then there are the folk who appear to wish their lives away in one-liners, which is rather cheapening I feel.... (cough...)  The thing is that, exactly as in 'real' life, we are absolutely free to chose who, how and when we interact. One of the traps of social media is that we can think we have to all the time be whittering.

Don't get me wrong. I can totally talk the hind leg off the proverbial in the right place and with the right person. Overall though, I am a contemplative, observer type, not in the least bit shy, but neither am I at all interested in which cousin did what and with whom.

Also, despite advanced educational status and being in possession of a seriously convoluted thinking tool, I have a tendency to break things down into stepwise components. I am of the KISS variety.

It's a knack which confounded my teachers throughout the years, as well as more than a boss or two. Folk apparently do not feel they are worth their money or title unless they are confusticating one thing or another. There has been the tendency to look at me sideways with the question "is she that stupid or have we made it too easy" hovering around. I have the ability to listen to a two hour lecture and write a 250 word synopsis, only to be summoned before the achaarya and requested to rewrite. When asked for guidance on what had been missed, or what might be done differently, all that was wanted was more words.  Just for the sake of it. Heaven forbid the essence of two hours got into a minute's reading!!!

Why tell you this? As said at the top, when working online, one must essentially operate congruent to the live personality. That was a glimpse of mine.

One of the great mistakes, particularly early in life of the etherwobbly, was for folk to think they could 'hide' themselves'. (...actually there is a whole different set of posts in that and won't linger on it here); but as this mode of operation becomes so much a part of 'live person living' (lpl), it must become a solid and honest part.

Thus, just as in lpl, the various networks which have been set up are being called to task on their ethos and moderating. One must assess carefully just how involved one wishes to be with any of them. Think of it as being akin to finding a bank. Given that $$$ is not the issue here, the criteria are likely to be along the lines of, what does the branch (page appearance) feel like, how private can my account be, how handy is it to deposit  and withdraw (up/download), does this 'bank' uphold similar ideals to my own, is it respectful...and so on.

We all know about the misbehaviour of some financial institutions. They are all at fault somewhere, but some more than others and some are just down right unscrupulous. (The Repository of the Pins gets a sticking from me here again....)

Now, the bank you choose will have, as much as anything, to do with the type of transaction account you are after. As mentioned last week, I didn't even realise that I needed a 'bank' when I first began blogging. At that point, Google was just switching everything over to the G+ pages. It wasn't forced. There was choice. Honestly speaking though, I much preferred the look and feel of the G+ page to that of the, frankly, rather bland Blogger account (profile) page.  I mean no disrespect to those who have those still - but when I want to find out about someone new who may be of interest for me to visit or follow, on the traditional account it is necessary to page all the way to the bottom (and some folk have pages of  bloglinks to wade through) to find out anything .... and then quite often, they have given nothing away!!!

The G+ page, though, resembles the blog setup itself.  One can go straight to the 'about' page and yes, often folk still haven't declared themselves, but at least it was quickly found.

The Blogger profile is nothing more than that, a page with vital stats. G+, however, beyond providing profile for the bloggy, will also post the bloggy immediately it goes live, advertising it to the bigger search engines. Additionally, one can post directly to the G+ page. With the recent introduction of the ability to lock a post to top of page, that on-page posting becomes more attractive, as witnessed with my recent Recruit a Pal post there. One can also display photos, videos, collections...

Image result for which bankIn the profile/about page, there is a lot of scope for deciding what you want the general public to see, what you prefer only those you select to see, or whether you keep everything to yourself. On the posts page you can add notes, as mentioned, or edit how your blog posts have been presented. There is #tag technology available (G+ does it for you), but it is possible to opt out of that and control it privately. I may begin using #tags for the RedBubble posts that I do to see whether it drives more traffic - but already I can tell you that having a fresh weekly 'advert' post locked to top of page is bringing in views... so G+ is good for advertising oneself.

I choose not to display my vids and photos via G+, as many appear via the posts page anyway. Something else which is available, but I have yet to decide whether to bother, is to have your own personal URL attached to that page. As it is, if you put +Yamini MacLean into your search bar.... thar she blows! So probably not a great benefit.

Now the other main thing is Circles. Those of you who have converted to G+ from your Blogger profile will have found that you can sort the folk you connect with into groups according to interest. This sort of thing is in most networking setups of course; but I do find the circles very elegant. Particularly as I work within Chrome and Gmail. Everything gels. My circles now act as my contacts page for Gmail, so there is no doubling or trebling of effort. As an aside to this, I have been non-plussed by the fact that some of you who comment come up in my inbox with standard email and I can respond directly to you, whilst others are 'blogger bounce' and still others are 'no reply'... I have now figured out that this is directly related to whether you have taken G+ (direct), have Gmail addy but are still on Blogger Trad (bounce), or are neither of these two (no reply). The other possible variation, even if on G+, is that the email has not been supplied. ..thus I find it a real plus if others have taken G+ and are on Gmail.

It is possible to make your page visible only to members of your circles and not Joe Pub, if that is your wish. When you 'follow' someone's blog, that is different from following on G+. This is why you will now see some bloggies with two different 'connect' boxes. I have three times the followers via G+ than on this bloggy itself. So it works. Admittedly, not all are reading this page; several are only going to the photo blog and quite a number are reading the spiritual blog. The one number shows up on all three though. That can be a tad misleading and is why I have maintained the original 'blog pals' box as well. (Though I have way more readers than the members box - or comments! - would suggest.)  I do not follow every blog of the people I follow on G+, but what happens is that I can go to the home page and see the posts of everyone I follow and can thus get an idea of what they have on offer. From there I can flag a G+ or even comment directly there, saving a trip to another page, which can be time consuming and not always necessary. Of course, it is possible to click through to the post if it is looking particularly interesting. In relation to that, it is possible to 'repost' anything of merit or to help another (I recently had two blogpals repost my updated promo vid for RB, which was generous of them!) and this is one of the definite positives for new arrivals and such.

I had mentioned last week that one of the advantages if you are on G+ is that you can receive a plus notification to say that YAM or Joe or Puffalant has read your post and wanted you to know. That notification displays on the top right of screen on the 'bell' in Chrome. Which is the other integrative part of Google.

I started out on IE but once blogging began it got 'sticky'; research all pointed to Chrome being the better platform to operate Blogger and it has certainly proven thus. Initially I swapped between the two, but I have to be honest, I find Chrome much easier on the eye than IE - particularly after I tweaked it with a theme of my choosing. I can count on the flanges of my left pinky the number of times I have used IE in the past three years.

On the whole, I find the integrative nature of the Google range and its ease of use to my liking. I like that G is doing its best to respond to the call for the sort of 'pick and choose' one experiences in lpl. I like that I have total control of who sees what. I like (mostly) that G 'knows' me and offers only what is pertinent to my choices but also doesn't quibble when I tell it off. I like that I can ignore the occasional 'bad apple' and can report or block. We have to accept that if we go outside our front door there are going to be folk we meet who may not be to our liking. That's fine, just walk on by. Same online, but made easier in G.

One negative in that regard is - if one ever did get a comment which was offensive or just plain spamming/trolling, it is not possible to delete it as one can in Blogger... but it can be 'red flagged' and Google will assess it - mostly they will take it down, having looked at the general tenor of the page upon which the offender appears.  Thankfully I have not had to test this, but reading others experiences gives me confidence this would be dealt with. Also, G is all the time adapting to such things, so it may well come along.

Another negative, from my perspective, is that when trying to see others posts on the home page, there is a tendency for precedence of place to be given to those blogs which post several times a day, or who are overtly commercial.  As a number of Blogville pages are doing this, I have had to swap them out of my 'following' circle into my 'acquaintance' circle, thus giving all the regular bloggies a chance to appear.

When I first started with G+, there was a tendency for folk to go running around 'collecting' pages in the hope of being selected themselves and the thinking was too much like book-phiz thing. However - Google themselves weighed in on that behaviour and it is part of their T&Cs that users do NOT behave this way. Whilst they can't stop that (it would be almost impossible to police), there is strong request that one only links up with genuine interest and intent to follow. This is very much to my liking as that is exactly what I prefer to do. I have a few followers, but I do not necessarily follow them all in return. One or two have subsequently withdrawn, because, perhaps that is all they were seeking. Mostly though, people stay.

......................phew..... well that got a bit long-winded again! So much for boasting brevity, YAM... My aim today, though was to highlight key areas that appeal and how the whole thing hangs together. I didn't want to bombard you with heaps of tech and 'how to' stuff - rather come at it from the purely personal view. Salient points;

  • Choice of 'networker' likely reflects lpl
  • KISS applies; choose one and adhere to that. Flying about everywhere is exhausting
  • G+/Chrome is a 'whole earth' kinda experience
  • strong flexibility
  • wide capability and 'plug ins'/'add ons'
  • +es far outweigh the -es

The thing is, Google is quite vast and finding out where, how and why to do things can be a bit tedious, if not downright hair-tearing at times. This can be off-putting if you have gotten used to something. Couple of comments last week suggested this was likely! That's perfectly normal - but I do think that inter-relationship of Blogger and Google is worth pursuing.  Therefore, next week, I shall place here a purely technical post pointing to some relevant places in Google for those who are interested to peruse. It is not my intention to give a tutorial per se... but if anyone really wants to follow through and is having any trubs, I will certainly do my utmost to help them.

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  1. I think we said we'd look at our Google Plus page last time and we never did. OK, our intentions are renewed. Let's see if the follow through is sufficient. No promises BOL!

    Your Pals,

    Murphy & Stanley

    1. Hari OM
      hehehehe - I know that feeling..."oh yes I furgot ..!" I do it all the time. Even writing lists doesn't always guarantee success for this menosoupal miss! Yx

  2. We are still CONTEMPLATING it..... butt admit we are sort of Set in our Ways....and DO like Blogger the way it IS....

    1. Hari OM
      I hear ya guys - it is actually because I am a bit 'way set' that I have been keen to follow up on this - I just refuse to take up all that other social c*** but acknowledge there is a requirement to spread wings a bit... and being able to do much of what is offered elsewhere all 'under one roof' as it were, is the big attraction for me.... it doesn't affect the blogs or Blogger other than the profile...Yxx

  3. We occasionally check google but not very often - sometimes if just seems like overload with blogger, twitter, instagram, facebook, pintrest and now google circles.

    1. Hari OM
      ...that's my point! It if is of course everyone's prerogative to flit around between 'parties' as they wish; I am simply inclined to keep within the the one boundary is all. Yxx

  4. Well I am set in my Blogger ways too, but some time ago (a year or maybe more) did sign up to Google+ and immediately started getting loads of spam - not nasty stuff, just commercial and/or weird - on the blog.I deleted the Google+ thing and the spam stopped. No doubt I could have changed some settings and prevented this, but this experience did put me off trying G+ again.
    Cheers, Gail.

    1. Hari OM
      Yes there was a spate of that for some folk who had not utilised the traffic settings appropriately...It was about 15 months ago that Google itself started to clamp down on this type of acitivity. This is also points to the settings on Blogger itself - I have mine at 'registered users only'; those types of commercial spams are automated and require that the comments are 'open to anyone'. Occasional one's get round this filter but they are rare and of course in Blogger it is very easy just to send them to the spam bin.

      G+ has been doing a lot to satisfy end-user wishes for a truly friendly place to play, meet and greet according to individual desires - matching "lpl" experience.... Yxx

  5. CRIKEY ..... I'm just confused!!!!!! Mum's got a gmail account but it scares the living daylights out of her so she doesn't even go and look there anymore. There must be lots of her stuff up there in hyperspace as she calls it!!

    1. Hari OM
      Charlie mate, let mum know that when I first had to let go of my pc-based email account program and move to The Cloud (moving to India made this a 'must'), despite all my techy-typeness, I was very very very wary!!!

      However, I now find it so easy to use, as well as functional in relation to all things I do online, that I can't quite imagine switching from it now! Yxx

  6. I'm sorry Yam but you have completely lost me. I have no idea what G+ is (did I get that right). I am almost computer illiterate and although I did try to understand what this was about I was completely out of my depth.
    From what I did glean from your writing makes me think my blog is one the simple, more boring types but without anyone here by my side to make it better, it must stay as it is.
    I admire people who have your type of intelligence and often wish some of it may run off but I guess it's a little late for me at my time of life.
    I am on Facebook but don't use it as a social media type of thing but rather more because it does have Scrabble which is a game I really enjoy and share about 50 games with people from around the world. They say it is relatively safe from intruders and so far I've had no problems with it. You can block people you don't wish to have anything to do with etc.
    I use the internet to do my banking and always keep my fingers crossed that some brain out there doesn't find a way to hack into our bank. I can't get to the bank so it is the easy way to pay accounts. I refuse to go paperless as so many institutions keep asking us to do. If my computer breaks down then I will still receive my bills in the post and pay them at the post office. so there.
    Have a great weekend. xx

    1. Hari OM
      don't panic Mimsie! G+ has nothing to do with your blog as such, though it is an alternative place for the profile info - which can then be expanded as much or as little as you wish for other work. The Blogs work independently.... AND YOUR'S IS FAR FROM BORING!!! I love the history you share.

      Everything is going online, ultimately, be it banking, shopping - everything short of going to the toilet! It is inevitable; all we can do is do our best not to be run over by the 21st century equivalent of the steam engine... of course that was the start of the modern decline into mechanism, but don't get me started! Yxx

    2. That's a relief then....I don't have to panic, at least not yet.
      I feel you, like myself, often wish we could return to the gentle, slower-moving age prior to mechanisation but alas we can't. One must remember much good came along with the bad so we must try to be content.

  7. think "Big Brother" is retired... now it means: Google is watching you :o)
    easy rider

    1. ...hehe - partly true... but the Government systems which have the driver's licensing and welfare details and such like are much more worrisome than Google; and let me just say - by entering the online community at ANY level, one has automatically flagged presence no matter what system is used. Don't want The Eye? Don't play online.... Yxx


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