PM's latest annoying responsibility

The more social we get, the more we expose about ourselves. That's a fact of life that antedates social media, the Internet, or computers. From this perspective, social media are just a new way to  reveal ourselves, sometimes by choice, other times not. 

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Vote for Silicon Valley P-Camp topics

If you're a product manager or product manager on the West Coast, you should take a minute to vote for the topics you want to see covered in the Silicon Valley P-Camp next month.

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Buzz as a PM failure

Google now has two recent examples of how not to launch a product. To be more specific, the launches of Wave and Buzz are unfortunate illustrations of product management and product marketing breakdowns.

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Google's buzzkill

Yesterday, my reaction to Google Buzz was bafflement. Today, it's frustration, and I can see why some people are finding Buzz to be infuriating.

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Why Buzz, and why being the best isn't what matters

Building off of Tom Grant's post about Google Buzz earlier today, Google Buzz is an interesting case study about how winning market share is not just about having the first or the best product. It is often about having a product (including marketing and sales) that does the best job at getting users to use it and getting developers to create quality content. 

Google knows this better than anyone, and which is why they just released a product that they hope will be easier to adopt than Twitter or Facebook.  Google Buzz is not fully baked and its privacy settings are badly broken; however its intended audience already uses Gmail and just had this new tool literally dropped into their inboxes.  Google is probably hoping to replicate its successful introduction of GChat, an instant messaging client that was substantially worse than any other when it was introduced in late 2005 but today enjoys widespread adoption because it is on by default for anyone logged into Gmail and was gradually improved.

Non-social products can survive with gradually declining market share for a number of years, and then potentially come back if users become convinced that their offering is superior.  However a social media product without users is a ghost town, a phenomena that MySpace knows well as their CEO leaves today.  

This is not a battle over who has the neatest features; it's a battle over who will be the most successful at capturing user time, an increasingly limited resource. 

Therefore: Do you think the technical problems with Google Buzz, both privacy and other, are enough to stop it from gaining broad adoption, at least among existing Gmail users?

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