Ben Thompson’s Stratechery had an interesting post that mapped various social networking services into a 2×2 grid. I’m not a Google+ user but I immediately starting working through the quadrants trying to place it—and failed because it’s a fools errand.
In G+, careful circle curation could make any post public or private, symmetric or asymmetric. It had a Twitter and Facebook-like timeline and fairly good integration with Gmail and YouTube. Unlike Facebook and Twitter, it has comments, markup formatting, and no character limit on posts, which encouraged longer-form posts common to Wordpress and Tumblr. It allowed users to share higher-resolution photos than its competitors and even had built-in chat and hangouts. In short, there wasn’t a single icon on the chart it didn’t integrate or share space with.
I couldn’t place G+ because for careful users willing to invest in circle curation it offered everything, but that flexibility came with the inherent risk that inattention, bugs, or bad judgment could have unintended or regretted consequences. In a world of easy-to-explain apps that do one thing well it tried to do everything. G+ was a jack of all trades and a master of none, and that is why it failed.
The Social/Communication Map from Stratechery