Your circles: Sharing behavior on Google

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date



Users are sharing and consuming enormous amounts of in-formation through online social network interaction every day. Yet, many users struggle to control what they share to their overlapping social spheres. Google+ introduces circles, a mechanism that enables users to group friends and use these groups to control their social network feeds and posts. We present the results of a qualitative interview study on the sharing perceptions and behavior of 27 Google+ users. These results indicate that many users have a clear under-standing of circles, using them to target information to those most interested in it. Yet, despite these positive perceptions, there is only moderate use of circles to control information flow. We explore reasons and risks associated with these behaviors and provide insight on the impact and open questions of this privacy mechanism. Copyright is held by the author/owner.

Publication Title

SOUPS 2012 - Proceedings of the 8th Symposium on Usable Privacy and Security

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