Our very own Violet Blue is clearly angry. Very angry.
While I empathize with Violet over her experiences with Google+ and how the social network has been managed, I also wish to point out that Google co-founder Sergey Brin admitting to the audience of the Re/code conference, which is made up of the richest and most powerful people in the technology industry, that his personal involvement in Google+ "was probably a mistake for me to be doing anything tangential to social to begin with" is not at all uncharacteristic of the way Google has been conducting itself since, well, forever.
I don't wish to be in the position of having to defend Google for its business practices, as I work for one of its competitors and I don't agree with many of the things that they do.
I encourage people to look for alternatives to Google products and services for any number of reasons.
But in this situation the only thing I can offer Violet is, paraphrasing the immortal words of Forrest Gump,
"Google is as Google Does."
If you are going to use Google's services, then you also by definition have to accept that you are going to reside within that ecosystem and Google has the right to manage it and manipulate it as they see fit, in order to maximize revenue.
To understand why Google is as Google Does, you have to understand their revenue model, particularly as it compares to their industry competitors...