The end of Google Friend Connect
January 2011 the Google Friend Connect panel (seen at bottom of the right-hand navigation column) was added to this site. And approximtaely 13 months later Google are turning it off!
Google Friend Connect is a Google-run social network system that allows users to ‘follow’ sites blogs, chat amongst themselves, share content, and if the webmaster/blog owner is up to speed, to receive newsletters. All well and good and some sites/blogs have accumulated a huge number of 'Friends'. In many cases this just serves as a bit of an ego-boost. And of course it was great to see that little box of faces in the sidebar to grow.
But things will change for site/blog owners who don’t use Google's own proprietry "Blogger" Platform as the Google Friend Connect system will stop functioning from 1st March 2012. Google are pushing for the use of their Google+ network instead — which is slightly odd as it doesn't do the same thing in the same way.
So what does this mean?
Friends Connect will still work but you can only join The Dark Fortress if you have a Google "Blogger" site yourself. So it seems to me with the much reduced functionality it doesn't seem worth keeping and maintaining here. So it is going to go.
I'd like to thank all those who've become a 'Friend' of this site over that last year. If you used Friend Connect to get site updates there are other ways you can continue to subscribe to The Dark Fortress, if you’d like of course.
Other ways to follow or subscribe to The Dark Fortress
You can use this RSS Feed link to subscribe to The Dark Fortress RSS feed. Copy the url into your favorite your preferred RSS reader. I use Feedly.
Although I don't post much on Twitter, all the site's updates are automatically announced there. Follow @thedarkfortress.
Nothing's decided yet, but in all probability I will install Facebook's Like 'Facepile' panel instead and see how that goes. It seems to be a fairly universal facility that I can't see Facebook turning off any time soon. But time will tell.
After removing all the redundant Friend Connect code the site's pages seem to be loading much faster — at least they aren't stalling midway through the process as they were wont to. Coincidence? I shall be monitoring closely.