More Google Buzz tweaks, separate version coming?

Privacy concerns again forced Google to tweak a few settings on Google Buzz, and the company is apparently considering offering an additional version separate from Gmail.

More tweaks are on the way for Google Buzz amid reports that the company is considering building a Gmail-free version.

In response to the angry missive directed Google's way Thursday by blogger Harriet Jacobs, Google has made additional changes to the way Buzz interacts with Google Reader, according to Silicon Alley Insider. Buzz users who had blocked other users from following them continued to see those users following their public Google Reader items, which Google described as a "bug."

Google Reader users can still share items on a private basis that their new Buzz-linked followers won't see, but they shouldn't be there in the first place, Google acknowledged. As a result, Google also plans to allow Google Reader users to block people from following them on that service.

"We reached out to [the] blogger in question this morning, and addressed her concerns with Google Buzz and Google Reader. Some of the concerns were due to confusion the product experience created. Her report also helped us discover one bug and one product issue in Google Reader," Google said in a statement.

Also on Friday, Google's Bradley Horowitz, vice president of product management, was quoted by Search Engine Land as saying Google was considering offering a version of Buzz that is separate from the Gmail version. This could alleviate privacy concerns about having one's Gmail account and Buzz account linked, as well as give businesses an opportunity to participate without having to create Google profiles.

It has certainly been an up-and-down week for Google and the Buzz service. Few people seem to be complaining about the service itself, though Google has had to scramble to keep up with the privacy complaints.

About the author

    Tom Krazit writes about the ever-expanding world of Google, as the most prominent company on the Internet defends its search juggernaut while expanding into nearly anything it thinks possible. He has previously written about Apple, the traditional PC industry, and chip companies. E-mail Tom.

     

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