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Google+ Invites: Get 'em Quick or They're Gone!

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I'd like to propose a new slogan for Google's new social network.

Google+: Harder to Get Into Than Jazz Fusion.

In a little over a week, the Search Giant has generated a tidal wave of buzz -- pun intended -- for its new social network. It's gotten Facebook scrambling and already has made a misstep regarding privacy. (How soon we forget the uproar over smartphone location tracking.)

Google+ was flooded with new users, so much so that the company had to shut down its open door policy. But since closing up shop to new users, as well as patching up that loophole which snuck them in, Google has allowed brief periods where new users were permitted to sign up.

Emphasis on "brief."

Overnight, Google allowed new users to join Google+. And that window lasted less than an hour. Not only was it too quick for most people to catch it, but also when the majority of folks were sleeping.

Very sneaky.

But why for the clandestine sign up periods? Why can't Google just give in and let people join?

Dave Besbris, Google+'s Engineering Director, posted an update on his profile which addressed the company's sporadic open invites:

Hey Google+ folks!

As I bet you've noticed, we are facing pretty incredible demand for Google+ invites.

As Engineering Director of Google+, I wanted to take a moment to explain why we're growing the system slowly. First, we want to make sure our infrastructure scales so the service remains fast and reliable. Second, we want to ensure that bugs are fixed while there are still a relatively few people in the field trial.

Things are going well with the systems right now so we feel comfortable enough to open up invites for a brief period. Our goal is to double the user base in the field trial. (Sorry, we're not giving details about how many folks are in the field trial yet).

So, in a few minutes, we'll open up invites again.

We continue to throttle invites, so please don't mass invite folks as it won't work. If you invite a handful of your most important friends and family you're much more likely to get these folks into our system.

Thanks again for providing so much wonderful feedback!

So, should you read anything about Google+ being open for new users -- at the risk of stating the obvious -- race to the site before it's shut back up again!

(See also: Google+ Makes Its First Big Mistake and Facebook Panics Over Google+ Craze)

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