Another day and another Google service will be shutdown soon.
Back in December 2018, Google announced that they would be shutting down Google+ for consumers. The companies contribution to the myriad options for the social landscape of the Internet will stay around for enterprise and business customers only.
This week the company laid out a timeline for the services shutdown. It will culminate on April 2nd, 2018 as the company begins deleting Google+ accounts associated with personal accounts.
Here is the complete sequence of events relating to the services shutdown and how it impacts past activity using Google+:
- As early as February 4th, you will no longer be able to create new Google+ profiles, pages, communities or events.
- If you sign in to sites and apps using the Google+ Sign-in button, these buttons will stop working in the coming weeks but in some cases may be replaced by a Google Sign-in button. You’ll still be able to sign in with your Google Account wherever you see Google Sign-in buttons.
- If you’ve used Google+ for comments on your own or other sites, this feature will be removed from Blogger by February 4th and other sites by March 7th. All your Google+ comments on all sites will be deleted starting April 2, 2019.
If you are a Google+ Community Owner or Moderator, you can export your Google+ data and save it locally. If you wait until March, you will have access to a broader set of data according to Google including author, body, and photos for every community post. This must be complete by April 2nd, 2019 to insure you get your data before the company shuts down the service and begins deleting Google+ accounts on that date.
If you are ready like me to go ahead and be done with Google+, you can delete the account by heading to http://plus.google.com/downgrade and signing in with the Google account that is associated with your Google+ profile.
Once you get to that page you will see this dialog:
Note: Be sure to review the various areas by clicking on the right side of each block so you can read how removal of your Google+ profile will impact other areas it is associated with. I grabbed that information before removing my own profile and here is what it said:
- Some data will be kept, and some data will be deleted or converted. You may lose access to some services and functionality.
- Your circles will be deleted.
- Your +1s will be deleted.
- Your posts, comments, and collections will be deleted. For treatment of YouTube-related content, refer to the YouTube section below.
- Your introduction, tagline, occupation, “currently living” and “places lived” profile data will be deleted. Your gender, birthday, personal contact, work contact, work history, education and sites listed on your Google account will be hidden from other people unless you choose to show that info. Change what others see on your About Me page. If other people already have your email address or other information that identifies you, we may show them your publicly visible Google Account information, such as your name and profile photo.
- Many Google+ social and sharing features will be disabled in other Google products and services.
- Photos and videos from your posts will continue to appear in your Album Archive but will be deleted from your Album Archive as part of the Google+ consumer shutdown. Photos and videos in comments and cover photos for Collections will be deleted.
- The cover photo on your profile will be reset, and the latest cover photo you used will remain available in the Scrapbook Photos album in your Album Archive.
- Your connections to third-party services will be disabled. You can manage them in your Connected accounts settings.
- Your chat content in Hangouts, Google Talk and Gmail will not be deleted.
- Any users that were automatically added to your Contacts because you interacted with them on Google+ will remain in your Contacts.
- Your Google Local reviews will not be deleted. You can access and delete them in the “Your Contributions” section of Google Maps.
- No communities you created will be deleted at this time. As part of the Google+ consumer shutdown, we will be deleting any communities you own that don’t have at least one owner who is a G Suite user.
- Events you created and your RSVPs to events will not be deleted until the Google+ consumer shutdown.
- Your comments on other sites like Blogger blogs that use Google+ commenting will be deleted.
- If you verified your mobile phone number to claim a custom URL, the phone number will not be deleted by this action. You can manage your phone numbers in My Account.
- You will maintain ownership and management rights over your Google+ pages.
- Google+ pages that you own will remain available until the Google+ consumer shutdown, after which point they will be deleted. If you don’t want to own a page anymore, you can delete it. Deleting a page is permanent. You can also transfer ownership of a page using the page’s settings.
- You can continue to manage any pages you currently manage until the Google+ consumer shutdown. Your name and email address will be visible to the owner and other co-managers. You can also remove yourself as a manager of a page using the page’s settings. If you do, you’ll no longer be able to act as that page or take any kind of administrative actions. However, all of your past posts, comments, and other actions will remain visible.
- Your YouTube channel will be kept, along with your videos and playlists. You will continue to have access to YouTube. Content displayed on YouTube will be kept, while content only displayed on Google+ about YouTube videos will be deleted.
- All comments, replies, likes, and dislikes that appear on YouTube will be kept.
- Any posts about YouTube videos that only appear on Google+ and not on YouTube, including associated comments and +1s, will be deleted.
- Deleting your public profile will not affect the status of your Google Account.
- Your introduction, tagline, occupation, “currently living” and “places lived” profile data will be deleted.
- Your gender, birthday, personal contact, work contact, work history, education and sites listed on your Google account will be hidden from other people unless you choose to show that info. Change what others see on your About Me page. If other people already have your email address or other information that identifies you, we may show them your publicly visible Google Account information, such as your name and profile photo.
As you can see, they are providing a lot of detail so you fully understand what will happen with your data once you begin the deletion process for your Google+ profile. There is a full Frequently Asked Questions about this process available for further information.
Finally, once you are confirm and move forward with the profile deletion, Google will weirdly ask you why you deleted your Google+ profile.
It is almost as if they are not aware of the end for their Google+ consumer service.
Anyway, even though they note your account data will be queued up for deletion when you take these steps, the data will not begin to be removed until April 2nd, 2019. However, your Google+ profile will not be available once these steps are taken despite the data still being on Google’s servers until its removal in April.
Will you be removing your Google+ profile manually or just wait for it to disappear after April 2nd?