Google+: We won't screw over developers

Google+: We won't screw over developers

Summary: Google's Vic Gundotra explains why Google+ doesn't have a full write API - yet.

TOPICS: Google

The senior VP of engineering at Google, Vic Gundotra, who is also leading the charge in the technology giant's social media efforts, has explained why Google+ does not currently offer a full write API.

google wont screw over developers

The decision to postpone an API for the social network has been met with some contention by developers eager to begin building on the platform. Even though complaints have come in thick and fast from some third-party developers, Gundotra insists that a half-baked offering will do more damage than good.

The timing is certainly spot-on for Google, as social networking giant took a public thrashing this week by developer Dalton Caldwell. In a blog post titled "Dear Mark Zuckerberg," the developer accused Facebook of bullying tactics and "financial motivations that are not in-line with users & developers."

The developer apparently attended a meeting in which a product he was designing was considered too similar -- and potentially competitive -- to the new App center. Caldwell claims that the relations staff at the firm put pressure on him to sell-up -- or risk destruction.

After his experience dealing with Facebook, Caldwell said:

"The meeting took an odd turn when the individuals in the room explained that the product I was building was competitive with your recently-announced Facebook App Center product.

Your executives explained to me that they would hate to have to compete with the "interesting product" I had built, and that since I am a "nice guy with a good reputation" that they wanted to acquire my company to help build App Center. [..] Personally speaking, I am resolved to never write another line of code for rotten-to-the-core "platforms" like Facebook or Twitter. Lesson learned."

Taking advantage of the situation, Gundotra took to Google+, writing:

"When we open an API, we want developers to feel confident that the innovations they build are going to be long lasting. Releasing an API, and then later changing the rules of the game isn't fun for anyone, especially developers who’ve spent their life’s energies building on the platform."

He then wrote "I'm not interested in screwing over developers," offering a direct link to Caldwell's blog post.

At the moment, only carefully chosen partners have access to Google+ on a development level. However, Gundotra insists that the full write API will be released -- when the timing is right. He concluded:

"So I'm sorry that we haven’t released a wide open write API for those of you who want one. We're being careful because we want to be different. You know, actually respectful of developers who build on our platform. It’s novel. I know."

Image credit: Google+/ Vic Gundotra

Topic: Google

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  • Does the public actually uses it?

    G+ is shoved all over the web and all google accounts are automatically 'upgraded' to G+ without asking permission. The numbers given by google are a just marketing stunt. Apart from fans, does the average Joes' use this spy serivce?
    • You looking to hire a detective?

      “does the average Joes' use this spy serivce?” Off topic comment none the less, here you go.

      The average Joe may use the spy services of detectives. They may also work for a spy agency like the
      CIA or the Pentagon's Defense Clandestine Service.

      Yes to the question of using Google+ for the average Joe.
  • Google tries to spin bad news into good news

    Google is taking their failure (inability to delivering the API) and trying to spin it into a success.

    Google is infamous for screwing developers, and is well-known for changing their APIs and changing the rules of their APIs.

    Designing an API is not particularly difficult.
    Tim Acheson
  • Google+: We won't screw over developers

    Google not screwing someone over, that'll be the day.
    Loverock Davidson-
    • Re: Google not screwing someone over, that'll be the day.

      Yeah, Google Chrome runs on Windows Phone!
    • Re: Google not screwing someone over, that'll be the day.

      Yeah, Google Chrome runs on Windows Phone!
  • What's Google+?

    Never heard or it. Does anyone use it?
    • Google+: We won't screw over developers

      Search is your friend....

  • Kudos Google

    Great products and services.
  • acTually...

    Google+ can only be visible if API is working. Currently they are like "testing" phase about user interactions. I'm a developer and only reason I'm not interested in Google+ now is because I can not use any API to publish to my business page, hence improve user interactions.