Circles help you organize and categorize people and pages in Google+. Circling is the equivalent of friending in Facebook or following in Twitter. It is a one-way relationship (like Twitter), which means that you can circle someone, but they do not automatically circle you in return. Circles can be used for both listening and talking. If you choose, you can view only the posts from the people in one circle at a time to “narrow the stream.” Do this by clicking the circle name on the left column of your Google+ page.
Circles can be used as a broadcast device by indicating that a piece of content is only available to be read by a specific circle, multiple circles, or a combination of this plus individual accounts.
You can circle a total of 5,000 people and pages combined. A person placed in multiple circles is only counted toward your quota once. Although no one can see the name of the circle you have added them to, or even how many circles you have added them to, my “best practice” is never to name a circle something you would be embarrassed over if it was discovered. Figure 1.11 shows the basic Circle management screen. To see if you are circled by a specific person, visit their Profile page. If that person has circled you, you will see a gray arrow circle icon next to their name indicating they have followed you.
Figure 1.11. The basic Circles page.