Google+, 2011-2019

In Memoriam Google+.jpg

On April 2, our beloved Google+ (G+) passed from this life surrounded by many family members and friends who had loved, laughed, and found a sense of purpose together. We only wished your departure had happened one day earlier, as an elaborate April Fool’s joke. But that wasn’t meant to be. And so, we remember you, Google+, and the blessings you brought into our lives.

Google+, you came into the world as a tiny lowercase “g,” with many of us ogling your cute little typeface. Instantly you captivated us with your potential. You grew so quickly. Even as a child, we could see your special talent to gather groups of like-minded people around you. You also helped us form circles where we interacted privately and safely. In this and so many other ways, you were an idea before its time.

As you were just beginning to walk, you dazzled and delighted us with hangouts. Don’t look now, but what you started goes on today in many other ways and across many different platforms. Over time, your personality helped us recognize our passions and strengthened our desire to create communities with others who shared our interests. You brought us together across the world in celebration of what we love—photography, pets, beauty, inspiring quotes, NASA, places to see before you die . . . we could go on. And you kept growing. You spoke every language and helped us make new friends by translating what we were saying. You protected us by muting and banning those who didn’t have our best interests at heart. When we couldn’t get out in person, you made it possible for us to connect from our kitchen tables and wherever we were in this wide world. You broke down social, cultural, and political barriers to bring us together in truly meaningful ways. Thank you, Google+. We’ll be +1-ing you in our hearts forever.

No one can say everything that you accomplished in your brief existence—that’s a story that has been written within all of us who knew you. The bottom line is this: Because you lived, we discovered that social media is more than individual users asserting themselves in a galaxy of competing stars. You helped us see how all of us could harmoniously orbit around real interests, talents, purposes, dreams, and desires. As we did, the distance between us shrank and the universe became a place of mutual support, common dreams, and real peace.

Even though we weren’t ready to let you go, your influence goes on. You leave behind millions of friends and family members in virtually every country, speaking almost every language. What will we do without you? Because we knew you, we will continue to gather on other platforms around the things we really care about. Because we were part of you, we’ll keep sharing laughter, smiles, and a daily dose of lightheartedness. Because you showed us a better way, we’ll open our minds to the perspectives of people we’ve never met and whose worldviews are different than our own, reaching across boundaries to create unity and community wherever we go. Thank you, Google+. Thank you for being a beloved part of our past and a stepping stone to our future. Because of you, we will be different than we would have been, always.

Google+ is survived by its creators and millions of devoted family members and friends. An ongoing, pre-departure wake has been held over recent weeks and will continue on (see here).  Farewell services will be held in the hearts of bereaved users everywhere. For times and locations, check your personal diary. In lieu of flowers or other gifts, condolences and comments may be left below.