Friday, March 21, 2014


May 9th 2015, IMPORTANT UPDATE: The Circle Sharing Feature Is Deprecated  :-)

There are quite some "Lucky Lucianos" active on google+. Some you will recognize quite fast - others have nice "clean" profiles because the dirty jobs are done on separate pages. What all have in common: They worsen our google+ experience. Even if you don't see the "Blue Boxes" right away you will have to deal with them. This post will show you how the circlejerks work and what alternatives you have. Especially newbies get under their influence and can have a quite hard time to get rid of them. Their circles are filled with fake profiles, useless pages and of course a lot more circlejerks.

About 1 year ago Bill Gasset wrote an excellent article. I read it then, but did unfortunately not act accordingly. Here is the link: BillGassett - The Google Plus Circle Jerk

When I joined g+ about 2 years ago I was first inactive for about 1 year and then got trapped by 3 circlejerks. One of them has stopped some months ago after we exchanged messages about whether it makes sense or not to share circles. I continued to share 2 photography circles monthly for some time but finally stopped also.

As a newbie you might feel great when your follower numbers go up fast but you don't have more good interaction. Many circlejerks use circlesharing to promote their products, services or trainings. Often MLM and Pyramid Schemes are used to get e.g. a Cannabis or Consulting Business running. These "Snowball Business Models" are forbidden in many countries. Even if you don't know about these practices you support them everytime you reshare such a circle.

So what should I do?

You can support the circlejerks by cooperating, like many politicians and businessmen do it with the real Mafia. A lot of users do it out of boredom or not knowing about the disadvantages. They do the steps: "plus/comment", "reshare" and maybe "add". The first 2 are usually required to get into a circlejerk-circle. Question is: how many add the circle? When I checked circlecount lately I got the impression that less people seem to reshare and add than 1 year ago. This could be a sign that circlesharing becomes less attractive, especially since lately also the views are displayed by g+.

Everytime a circle gets reshared the chances for the jerks to get added by people goes up. Since the value to get added like this is very low it's pretty clear that you will get uncircled after some time. The "CircleMeCircleYou" way of thinking does not pay off. You will have to do a lot of cleaning up. So better say: "NO! NO! NO!"

Thanks to the newly implemented Viewcounts the circlejerks might have it more difficult. Here is an excellent article from Mark Trapahagen about it:

A well written posts from John Skeats I highly recommend reading:

Avoid shared circles - Why? Read Stacy Firths post:

Below you can find my personal list of G+ Circlejerks and their cooperators. It gets regularly updated:
List of Circlejerks