This extended rant about the number of social media users of Google+ reveals the difficulties of counting on the web.   Google continues to show gains for Google+ but no one believes the company because Google apparently counts users differently than Facebook.  As the article makes clear, it is hard to say how many real, active users of Google+ there are.  It has turned into a transparency issue for Google.  Critics will bay at the company until it provides a number that the critics can believe.  At this point, there might not be one since Google has apparently changed the way it counts more than once.  The feeling is that Google is hiding the real number of users because they are pitiful by comparison to Facebook.  That may be true.  Facebook had a head start, and there is little need for two social media that imitate each other.  Google can keep up the charade a while longer but it has become an issue for the company — one it has to address.

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