In this post, I'm mostly referring to the Photography Ecosystem within Google Plus.
At the top of the Google Plus food chain, you have people, I will call them "emerging industry leaders." These, are photographers, artists, bloggers who have earned large follower counts through hard work, innovation & constant contact within the community. They all seem to know each other, which is kinda weird but whatever. All are really super-accessible and most are more than happy to commune with others on ideas, techniques.
"Giving all my secrets away"… as the song goes..
Some of those folks have made for themselves sustainable businesses while others maybe not so much. Most of these folks, in my experience, exhibit gentle-artist temperaments. They are most-all outwardly very positive and not easily swayed to go negative. They make up a VERY small percentage of the G+ photography populace but are regarded so highly that their opinions are often regarded as photography gospel, despite their own humble attempts to cool those impressions.
In the next level of the G+ food chain, I see as "new media personalities." These are people that, perhaps, host shows or podcasts or even have blogs. Some are opinionated blow-hards that look good on camera but know little of relevance while others are gentle reflections of the upper tier. Still, others are genuine photo enthusiasts who have made it big through app sales or brand management and do contribute positively to the ecosystem but maybe lack the follower count or innovative-sharing of the top group.
These people tend to attach themselves to the top group for publicity reasons. That's annoying but understandable. Sometimes doing so, they contribute to the living conversation, other times the content reads more like a commercial.
I like to follow some of these people.. I'd say, in a world full of made up percentages, probably 85% of them are "positive" posters.
There is a small, "middle-class" area of photographers who have 10,000-50,000 circlers. These people often post, frequently-if-not-annoyingly so. Many do daily themes, not to drive their own creativity but in the hopes of exposure. Some, stalk the upper two tiers through comments in hopes of driving traffic back to their own digital warez. Some are just mirrors of the upper two that fate never granted a large audience.
Some of these folks are positive but many more post negative stuff. Long-editorial rants, and crap-starting comments on the upper tiers that aim to bring those people to their ..proverbial.. level.
Then, there is kind of .. everyone else. In an economy weighed by views, we'd be viewed as the "poverty class."
Just like the growing poverty class in America, a great cross-section of ideals is represented here. Some are hard-working, frequent posters of interesting content that just .. haven't been discovered yet.
Some of these folks spend more time stalking the upper tiers in hopes that the photos they took two years ago will be discovered, eventually leading to a Gungan parade in their hometown where they will one day be presented with the glowing-orb-of-awesomeness, a tribute to their ascension into the higher eschelons of GooglePlusDom.
A small percentage of the visitor-impoverished are, themselves, gentle-artists, content to keep posting and sharing, learning and growing. Hopeful to one day "arrive" but are nevertheless content in their station. They genuinely enjoy what you post and engage you in real conversations. These people, rock - by the way.
-- I worry about this group's influence.
It seems, lately.. like G+ has become a little more angsty, editorial and frustrated.
To the "upper classes". Thank you for what you teach and for staying true to your art. It is, after all, why most of us follow you.