Google +1

There are several ways for Internet users to proclaim what specific information found online was useful. Now, Google has joined the ranks of content usefulness ratings with its +1 concept.

When it comes to “approving” something on the internet, the most popular method is Facebook’s Like button. The button, which originated on its own social networking site, can now also be found on an uncountable number of pages across the web. Perhaps you are a stranger to Facebook and were wondering what all the Like hype and those buttons that keep popping up everywhere mean. Simply put your approval counts; see something you find interesting – just like it.

While there isn’t any formal method of collecting all of the Likes that have been clicked around the world for easy popularity cataloging, creating a Like for something does raise its bragging rights.

Following Facebook’s footsteps, Google has started to try out its +1 approval technology, or as the Google blog calls it, “…the digital shorthand for – this is pretty cool.” The +1s can be found on Google sites, with the prospect of future expansion similar to the Like button’s widespread deployment.

Currently, there is no ranking system for all the +1’s out there; however, users with a newly upgraded Google profile can see a collection of their own personal  +1 clicks, manage them, and delete any recommendations they no longer wish to see. Google users can also see any connections (including chat friends and Google contacts) and their recommendations. For example, while searching for recipes, any connection recommended recipes would become marked as recommended, and at the moment, +1’s development is focused on providing results that are genuinely “relevant.” Users can visit the “Social Circle and Content” section of their Google Dashboard to view any current Google connections. Google states that, eventually, the service may incorporate itself into other popular social media channels, such as Twitter.

What if you don’t see any +1s? The technology is still considered to be an “experiment.” Anyone can opt-in by visiting the Google Experiment Labs website to try out the feature. Once at the site, click the “Join this Experiment” button. It is important to note that after doing so, it may take a little while for the +1s to appear.

More information and updates may be found by visiting the official Google Blog. To immediately opt-in to the +1 experiment, stop by the Google Labs website.