Google+ Is Shutting Down April 2, 2019

The Wall Street Journal reported a security issue with Google+ (aka Google Plus) that Google claimed was not exploited.  However, according to WSJ, “Google eventually disclosed the bug in a blog post after the Journal’s report Monday, saying a Google+ bug exposed personal data of up to 500,000 users”.
In that same post, Google has casually announced the service will be shutting down for consumers. Not clear what the “for consumers” means but possibly they are keeping the service for their own needs.
When will it shut down?  Does anyone really care?  The word is around 3 months. [Update: now announced to be April 2, 2019] Right now anyone using Google + should do two things:

  1. Stop using it, it is a waste of time
  2. Make sure you have set up your GMB properly
  3. Shift relevant posting to GMB, noting posts are for promotional purposes only and show in your knowledge panel.
  4. Choose another social platform to publish your G+ content, if needs be.

One alternative to G+ is FaceBook, which has similar posting ability (text, links, images) and with similar image size demands.
If you want to branch out into Instagram or Pinterest, both image intensive site, then you will need put effort into working out how to use them.  Pinterest allows boards which are comparable to G+ collections.  Instagram relies on hashtags which were not relevant to G+.  In particular, Instagram images sizes are quite specific and unlike G+ links are not allowed.
In summary, stop using it and if needs be pick another platform.