Google+ Project invitation system is broken by design?

I have a few observations about the introduction of [Google+]( to the social space. A lot of people are clamoring about it but, even as of last night, not nearly enough of my “friends” are on it yet. So what’s going on?

First, a social network launched by such an internet powerhouse should not be held back in this day. Sure, there can be bugs and beta qualifiers, but the network effect is already matured over at Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, etc. Launching a network needs to allow people to quickly and easily have someone and all their friends join in order to gain immediate traction.

Second, the first people who do actually join within the first week after the announcement are power users and super nerds because they know other power users. Of course, this is by definition: early adopters join early and others are expected to tag along later.

Third, I don’t see mainstream users jumping on after the early adopters because once you hear about it, you want to try it. If you’re told you have to wait, the social network has just missed its opportunity to be relevant. Think back to Google Wave, the first and *only* people who received invitations and joined were the early adopters and widespread usage didn’t catch on.

But finally, maybe this is all the point of Google+? Only power users and nerds are expected to use this and Google thinks they can really capture the social space of the individuals who don’t enjoy Facebook or find Twitter a bit limited. In a world where Facebook refused to use the word “Blog” to describe the “Notes” app, the fact [Google used the phrase “nerding out” and “geek out” to describe sharing things]( is quite telling…