Notes on Google+

Google+ pages without Google+ profiles

 

Google has recently introduced a change whereby a Google+ page is no longer automatically deleted, when the parent Google+ profile that owns it is deleted, as had been the case previously. NB: This article refers to Google+ pages for brands, created from within the Google+ landscape, and not Google+ local listings that are tied to physical locations. Also the possible settings for YouTube users are different.

 

In writing this article, I have experimented with my own accounts, but I cannot cover all possible actions and outcomes. For this reason, please be aware that this article is very much provisional in nature, and may require correction.

 

I would also like to thank Kaleh Kohler and Peggy K for sharing information and results of their experiments regarding this change with me.

One of the few certainties with Google+ pages has been that they had to be owned by Google+ profiles, and if the parent Google+ profiles were deleted, then so would the Google+ pages that they own. This certainty no longer applies. It is now possible to own or manage Google+ pages without an active Google+ profile. This must be a recent change, which happened within the past few days. It is a bold move, and something that many Google+ page owners and managers had been calling for. However, it is important to stress that Google+ pages may still have only one owner, with or without a Google+ profile, and only the owner can delete the Google+ page. As such, it is still of paramount importance for businesses and organizations to ensure that the owner of the Google+ page is a current employee or member. Also, it is probably wise to be cautious about downgrading from or deleting Google+ content or the entire Google+ account, if the Google+ profile has been linked to otherwise closely connected with other Google products and services.

This change is evidenced by the page that appears, when a current user of Google+ profile decides to delete Google+ content or the entire Google profile.

Deleting the entire Google profile

After downgrading from Google+, either by deleting Google+ content or the entire Google profile, and the user clicks on +You or goes to plus.google.com, then he or she will end up on the Pages dashboard (plus.google.com/dashboard). It is possible to manage the Google+ pages, and exercise owner and manager functions starting from this page, however it is not possible to create a new Google+ page without an active Google+ profile. If the user is without a Google+ profile, then he or she is prompted to upgrade to Google+, i.e. create a Google+ profile, in order to create a new Google+ page.

Logically, this would apply to new account creations. It is not possible to create a Google+ page, without first going through account creation, including the cration of a Google+ profile. However, having created a Google+ profile, it would be possible to create a Google+ page, and after having created a Google+ page, it would be possible to downgrade from Google+ by deleting Google+ content or the entire Google profile.

There are now two ways of managing Google+ pages without an active Google+ profile. The first method is to create a username and password for a Google+ page and share that with those who need to manage that Google+ page. The second method is this recent change, even though it is convoluted in that an active personal Google+ profile is required for the creation of a Google+ page, but it has the benefit of not only managing but owning the page.

Google+ is a constantly evolving product, and this change demonstrates the speed of change. It may also be an indication that Google+ pages are becoming more and more a self-standing, independent product.