Since the launch of Google+ back in July of last year, only adults over the age of 18 were allowed to sign up for an account. All that changed on Thursday when Google engineer Bradley Horowitz (Vice President Product Management for Google+) announced that Google+ is now officially open to teenagers!
In addition to this, new privacy and safety features have been implemented to make sure that teenagers will have a safe sharing environment.
From Bradley Horowitz’s post:
Teens and young adults are the most active Internet users on the planet. And surprise, surprise: they’re also human beings who enjoy spending time with friends and family. Put these two things together and it’s clear that teens will increasingly connect online. Unfortunately, online sharing is still second-rate for this age group.
Horowitz goes into further detail about the privacy features on his Google+ post. Here are some of the bullet points:
- Safety starts with circles
- Teens will be encouraged (though not limited) to share with circles rather than publicly
- By default, only those in a teenagers circle can send them notifications
- If a stranger outside a teen’s circle joins a Hangout they are a part of, the teen will be temporarily removed and allowed to choose if they want to re-join
Google+ also welcomed some teen-oriented businesses pages, and celebrities with this roll out, including:
- +Ashley Tisdale
- +Cody Simpson
- +Google Science Fair
- +Selena Gomez
- +Teen Vogue
- +The Annoying Orange
- +Young Hollywood
- and many more…
If you are a teenager, or a parent of a teenager, we encourage you to check out the Google+ Safety center for yourself. You can learn more about their privacy policies, online reputation management, cyber-bullying, and more.
While some may be skeptical of this new door Google has opened, I think there will be a lot of positive that will come out of it. I think Google+ is the perfect place for teenagers to share their online experiences and interactions in a way that is safe and fun!
What do you think about teenagers invading Google+? You can leave a comment by clicking here.