LEEEEEET's GET READY TO RUMBLLLLLLLLLE!!!!
Can't we all just play nice? The animosity is growing by leaps and bounds. It seems that people are so entrenched in their competitive nature that they cannot just enjoy life.
Be it Facebook vs. Google+, iPhone vs. Android, Star Wars vs. Star Trek, or PC vs. Mac, people tend to pick a side and are ready to go to war over it.
Personally, I look at the emergence of g+ as yet another place to get to know people. I see no reason for it to be an either/or battle with Facebook. Facebook has been very good to me, and I expect to see great things from Google+ as well.
All that being said, let's do a little compare and contrast between the two. The idea is not to determine a "winner", but rather to see the strengths in each platform so as to use them more effectively.
The same rules apply on g+ as on Facebook. Blatant self promotion will get you nothing but ignored. You must interact with people and get to know them. If someone is interested enough in you to find out what you do, that person will be much more receptive than some stranger who sees your promotional links.
Now there are some distinct differences between the two platforms. Google+ follows the same no frills approach Google has always been known for. Plain white background and little to clutter the screen make it easy to focus on the task at hand. Facebook, on the other hand, has subscribed to the more is more, and more is still not enough method. They try to get as much info on a page as possible. This model typically works best for people who are not as technical and need everything right there within easy reach. I am a member at several other social sites that are such a jumbled mess I find it hard to be very critical of Facebook.
The biggest difference, however, is the type of user at each site. While your mom, grandmother, friends from high school and everyone else are on Facebook, most have yet to venture over to g+. And, they likely never will. But, if you are into tech gadgets, photography, Star Wars or anything else Geek related, then Google+ is the place to be.
These differences also cause most people to use them differently, myself included. Sure, there are a few shameless self promoters on there shouting about the next greatest money making program, but not nearly as many as with most other networks.
The bottom line is, neither can be said to be better or worse. It is all a matter of how you use it. It's a little like arguing that a wrench is better than a hammer, or a comb is better than a toothbrush. They have different uses, and each does a good job in its respective area.
In case you haven't noticed, this post is less about the difference in the two platforms and more about the "Big Deal" attitude. Many of the people now bashing Facebook are the same ones who bashed myspace in favor of Facebook back in the day. There is some sort of belief out there that, the latest and greatest is all that deserves our attention. Anything older is to be cast aside.
Have fun, experiment, and find what works for you. If you have any experiences or thoughts to share, feel free to do so in the comments section below.