Pour one out for Google+, the latest Google social property to be axed. There aren’t many who care to keep their Google+ history saved—that’s part of why it’s dying!—but if you want yours, here’s how to download it.
Google’s “Takeout” page is your friend here. Head to this link and select one or more of the four categories for Google+ data. +1s are a record of all the sites you’ve pressed that little red button on, very much like Facebook’s “Likes.” Circles are your friends and contacts on Google+, Communities are the groups you joined and their posts, and the Google+Stream is all of your personal posts, +1s within the site, and comments on other users’ posts.
Note the downward-facing arrow in each of these sections: each one has options for downloading only some posts from specific communities or changing the download format. Most of the time HTML is what you want, but if you’re importing to a program that supports more complex files, JSON and CSV are supported, too.
Click “Next” to go to the next page. You have the option of downloading this data in ZIP or TSV archive format. The Archive size option lets you split it into multiple downloads if it’s too big for only one.
The “Delivery method” field is of particular note. Google’s Takeout system will send you links to your Gmail address by default, where you can download each archive individually. But you can also import them directly into Google Drive, or log in to Dropbox, Microsoft OneDrive, or Box.com to add them to those services instead.
When you’re ready to proceed, click “Create Archive.” (The button is “Link Account and Create Archive” if you’re using a non-Google service.) You’ll get an email when your links are ready, or if you’re using a cloud service, the ZIP or TSV files will be loaded onto the cloud shortly. That’s it: you can sift through all those posts at your leisure.
Google+ will be shut down on April 2nd, 2019, and all user data on Google’s servers will be gone. You have until then to get it somewhere safe.