Still Think Facebook’s Not Threatened by Google+? Facebook Now Supports "+" Tagging

As a Google+ user (Author of Google+ For Dummies), and also avid Facebook user (Author of Facebook Application Development For Dummies), I often find myself getting my keys mixed up going back and forth from Google+ to Facebook. This is particularly frustrating for tagging friends. When Google+ launched, I found myself constantly putting in the “+” button to tag friends on Facebook, only to realize Facebook’s form of tagging was the “@” symbol. It appears some time in the recent past Facebook has now adopted the “+” (plus) sign to allow tagging in status updates.

From the start, Google+ supported both formats. This is no surprise, as Google+ had the most to gain from trying to adopt users that were used to Facebook’s tagging format. At the same time, the “+” sign added a level of branding to the Google+ experience making it unique to Google+.

It would seem that some Facebook employees are also enjoying Google+ perhaps a little too much, because someone likely got annoyed enough (or maybe their user testing showed they had a problem) to where they felt the need to support the “+” symbol as well when tagging your friends on Facebook. Now, to tag your friends on Facebook, you can either tag them by starting to type with the “@” symbol followed by their name, or starting with the “+” sign followed by their name.

I think it was awfully nice of Facebook to think of us Google+ users as they integrated this. I wonder how long this has been happening. I only realized it after doing it a few times and not even realizing I was doing it. I always argue Facebook and Google aren’t competitors – that would be nice if Facebook’s just being nice for this reason. However, I have a feeling Facebook is seeing some pressure from the other Google+ users using Facebook and running into the same issue.

Either way, I’m happy to not have to think twice now whenever I use that “+” sign to tag my friends.

10 thoughts on “Still Think Facebook’s Not Threatened by Google+? Facebook Now Supports "+" Tagging

  1. That first look was from my iPad this morning via the FB web browser. Now I'm looking on a desktop in two browsers. I see the +1 in the one logged in to my work Google apps account, but not in the one logged in to my personal Google account. The latter is registered with the Google+ Developers Preview program, and Google is right now testing a new +1 button design with that group, meaning we should see the new button on sites we visit while logged in to that account. That might be what's happeing to me on your site. Although I'm seeing the new +1 on most other sites that have it. Must be something with your implementation of the button, or something else on your site interfering.


  2. Guess it might not bother you.. but your page looks awful with my resolution (1280×1024).. and that's my “my” monitor..


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