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Possibly one of the most annoying features of Google+ is the updated +1 share feature.

Like a half-hearted share button it may show your followers a post you have liked. Here's how to turn it off in before people stop following you.

The Google+ plus 1 button was a subtle way to acknowledge your approval of a post or comment. Facebook has an identical 'like' and Twitter has the less used 'favourite' option. Each social network also has a full-blown 'share' button allowing you to copy the post to all your own followers (In Twitter it is a retweet).

A few months ago Google changed the way the +1 button operated within Google+. They were open about the change and a pop-up message was shown the first time you +1'd after the change.

In essence Google+ would start to treat the plus one as a pseudo share and may show the activity to others who follow you. There's no clue as to when Google decide to show a +1 to others; it appears random but I am confident there is some algorithm at play.

It doesn't sound like the end of the world; only people who are in your circles and also circle you back get to see some of your +1s. However it's actually quite annoying. Some people are very free and easy with their +1 so your own Google+ stream becomes cluttered with their likings, not yours. It also has the potential to be embarrassing. You might +1 a post to show your approval but don't necessarily want it broadcast.

I've seen all kinds of +1 content -- pictures of cats in odd places; people in compromising positions; adult content.

I personally find it very frustrating seeing so much. If you want to share something use the share button not a like button which may share!

Annoyingly there's not much I can do as a reader to turn it off. I can move serial offenders to another circle and turn down the volume on that circle so I see less or nothing. That is almost pointless in itself as the user may generate good content I then miss.

Google do however allow you to turn off your own +1 sharing which means you are not sending your own likes to everyone else.

Turning off the +1 sharing

On the desktop (very well hidden!):

  • Click Home near the top left, and select Settings
  • In the Google+ section scroll down until you see a button 'Manage apps & Activities'
  • Click 'Google' top middle of the screen
  • Click 'Edit' and ensure +1s are only visible to you

Alternatively, on a mobile:

  • Touch the 'three dot' icon top right and choose Settings
  • Select the Account Settings, then Sharing
  • Touch '+1s from posts'
  • Change the Visibility to 'Only You'

You only need to do this in either mobile or desktop. Here's the official Google+ Help page on +1 sharing.

Once done you will no longer be pestering your followers with all your +1s.

If you want to share something click the share button -- that is what it is for!

Encourage all your G+ chums to do the same thing.

site by DAJ