Google Reader made sharing items incredibly easy--and made building a community of like-minded readers even easier.
With the switch to Google+, though, many found themselves cut off from communities of people they only knew through Reader. This was upsetting, but there's a workaround that can help recapture the old Google Reader sharing features. Here's how to get started:
- Log on to your Google Reader account and click the gear icon in the upper right to bring up Reader Settings.
- Select the "Import/Export" tab near the upper right of the Settings page.
- Click the download links next to either or both of "List of people that you follow" and "List of people that follow you."
- Click the Google+ link at the top left (it says "+[your name]").
- In Google+, you should already have a circle called "Following" for folks you don't know but find interesting. Use that or create a new circle, if you'd like.
- If you use Chrome, install the Circle+ extension. If you've got a lot of folks to add, this will make the final step much, much easier for you. (It will also import any Google+ profiles listed on any other page, which may be handy for some users in other cases.)
- Head over to this page created by consultant Alfonso Siloniz, scroll down, and click the "Choose File" button, then select one of the files you just exported from Google Reader.
- You should now see a page full of links labeled "User." You've got two ways to import them: the easy way and the non-Chrome way.
- If you installed the Circle+ extension, you should see a blue dot ion the upper left of your window. Click it, select the circle you chose for followers, then click "Add to Circle." You should see a long list of new additions to your circle
- If you can't or won't use the Chrome extension, you need to click each link to reach individual Google+ profiles, then select "Add to circles" near the top right. This is time-consuming, but it's not too hard to break it up into chunks.
There you go! I certainly hope that Google makes it easier to import in the future; this shouldn't have been hard to foresee.