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Google+ exec declares Facebook 'social network of the past'

Ads are just so wrong, says man who lives on ad money

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If you're looking for disingenuous quotation of the week then Vulture Central wouldn't blame you for looking no further than Google+ boss Bradley Horowitz. The exec not only described Facebook as the "social network of the past" but also labelled Mark Zuckerberg's ad strategy as "intrusive".

He went on, while talking at a Business Insider conference in New York, to describe online social connections as a "sacred space" that shouldn't be interrupted by ads as they are on Facebook, which - like Google - derives the vast majority of its revenue from advertising.

The end goal, of course, is for Horowitz to shepherd more people into Google+, which now automatically signs up any new Gmail users to the service that is still trying to compete with Facebook. If those new subscribers want out, they have to explicitly say "no thanks".

Horowitz continued his dig against Facebook by saying that ads clumsily shoved in the company's News Feed were akin to a sandwich board man cutting in on a confab between a bloke and his daughter.

We're struggling to see the comparison, however, given that Facebook is front-and-centre a free-content network for punting ads. A father and his kid sat in a park having a private conversation is obviously a very different thing indeed. That's because there is no expectation of someone trying to flog something in such a situation.

Horowitz was super-keen on talking up the idea of social recommendations - which is marketing babble for ads2.0 - being more powerful than adverts when it comes to sharing stuff on such networks.

"It turns out recommendations are very valuable to users without compromising the user experience," Horowitz claimed. He went on to snidely remark:

"We don't have to make next week's payroll by jamming ads at users."

But what we'd really like is for Horowitz to put his money where his mouth is and break out those details about exactly how much revenue is buzzing from Google+. Apparently, it now has 400 million registered users - with around 100 million of them visiting the site at least once a month ... ®

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