Five Reasons to Love Google Buzz, Five Reasons Not

Do users really need or want a new social network? Facebook has become most people's default choice for social networking, making it easier to find old friends and business contacts. Do I really want to post everything twice in order for all my friends to see it? That may be reason enough to hope for Buzz's quick demise.

Social gaming has really caught on and Facebook is its headquarters. Buzz does not do this, but certainly could. Internet maven Jason Calacanis, a Buzz fan, says adding games to Buzz could seal what he sees as Facebook's sad fate. Other people appreciate that Buzz isn't as "noisy" as Facebook has become, thanks to applications-related posts.

Buzz can clog your e-mail. Maybe e-mail and social networks should be separate.

Facebook and Buzz are different animals. The difference in using a web-based "destination" user interface and interacting from inside a mail client is quite significant. Buzz simply feels different than Facebook and will mesh with particular applications and users in different ways. My feeling is that Buzz is more about connecting with small groups or individuals while Facebook makes users part of a much larger community.

Mostly, I think we need a better Facebook, both as a service and the company behind the service, rather than a Facebook replacement. However, if Facebook continues its user alienation program of aggravating changes, its users now have a new place go. Buzz could potentially shatter Facebook's hold on its 400,000 million members--because of things Facebook does.

The biggest difference between the two, ultimately, may be simple: One social network comes from a widely admired and respected company and the other comes from Facebook, which never quite seems to get anything right, yet has attracted some 400,000 million members.

That suggests Facebook is in more trouble that we--or it--may know.

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