Google+ One Year Anniversary: Congrats Trey Ratcliff and Mike Elgan (open to readers)

Google+ is a year old today. Our partner site,, gave awards to the celebrities that have emerged from the service — and our featured world photographer +Trey Ratcliff of was one. Congratulations to Trey and have a good one, Google+. Got a comment? Write it in below and we’ll work the best ones into a Google+ reaction story.

Photo credit: Trey Ratcliff

Google+ is a year old today. I was in on the late alpha and, man, that went by quickly.

This time last year, the majority of this staff was working on another edit staff. We were helping a big publishing company re-launch BYTE, a prominent tech magazine popular in the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s. I was its editor and the relaunch team had a staffer —’s Steve Krause — who focused almost exclusively on Google’s third try at the social market.

On Leo Laporte’s This Week in Tech a couple of weeks later, the comment that Google+ was all about animated GIFs and odd error messages came from one of the guests. This was true at the time. Yet over days and weeks — perhaps because Google is incenting its legions of employees on the success of the product — the error messages began disappearing. And the geeks came out to play. Three months later, it was clear this was no Google Wave.

Love it or leave it — and there is no question that Google+ is a polarizing platform — the Google+ social net turned out to be quite a different animal than Facebook, Twitter and the rest. I prefer the animal. Not everyone does. Post your comments below and I’ll work them into this piece.

And most interesting, it created its own stars. One of our favorite sites, MediaTapper, today issued awards to some of those new Google+ celebrities. One of them is our own featured photographer, +Trey Ratcliff. Another is a newer addition to, +Mike Elgan.

Here’s an excerpt of the awards and winners … find the whole story from Media Tapper here.

Category #1 Photographer with under 50K followers

1st Place: Rinus Bakker

2nd Place: Billy Wilson

3rd Place: Lee Daniels

Category #2 Photographer with more than 50K followers

1st Place: Trey Ratcliff

2nd Place: Mike Shaw

3rd Place: Thomas Hawk

Category #3 Hangout user

1st Place: Amanda Blain

2nd Place: Daria Musk

3rd Place: Matthew Rappaport