Chris gets a cape!
What is the Google Product Expert program?
Product Experts are volunteers who answer people’s questions in the Google Support Forums. Chris has always frequented the support forums since early Picasa days. When Google Photos came out in 2015, she devoted even more time. She wanted to understand Google Photos inside and out. She found the best way to do that was to read questions and answers on the Google Photos support forum, and then start answering them herself. She could be confident she was learning when a person would respond to her answer with “Thank-you, that worked.”
Benefits of being a Product Expert
After answering many questions, the Google team reached out and asked her to be a part of the team – they called it “Top Contributors” back then. She said an enthusiastic “Yes!” There is no pay, it is a volunteer position, but there are many benefits. Top among them for Chris is to have a network of other product experts. Now, she has other people to ask when she is stumped by a question. She also has some access to Googlers on the Google Photos team. To find out more about the program, visit ProductExperts.withGoogle.com. Also see @GooglePEProgram on Twitter.
Every year, a conference is held where Google picks up the tab for product experts to gather together. It is usually at Google headquarters in Mountain View, CA, but it has also been held in Boulder, CO and New York City. A highlight for Chris was in 2018 when she met David Lieb, the founder and product lead for Google Photos. This connection even made her bold enough to ask if he would join her Geeks On Tour members for a Zoom meeting Q&A on google photos. And, he said yes! Here’s the recording from 2020.
Why did she get an award?
Many awards are given each year during the Product Expert conference. Chris received the Creator award for her videos. When answering questions, Google recognizes that a video is often invaluable. Chris often links to a video when she answers a question, and many of her fellow Google photos product experts also link to her videos! For example, here is a sample question with Chris’ answer:
Q: I would like to be able to print on my google photos. so far I have had no luck.
A: If you have the android app, you can add text on top of a photo using the Markup tool:
- Open the photo in the Android Google Photos app
- Tap the Edit button
- Scroll over till you see “Markup” and tap there
- Tap text and type the words you want, when done tap outside of the words. You can now drag them around or resize them.
- See a quick video: https://youtu.be/H08cD-TvIEs
- and here’s another one with an extra tip: https://youtu.be/wpqdy-z662k
If you’re on an iPhone, you’ll need to use the Apple Photos, or Snapseed. If on a computer, you’ll need to download the photo and use a desktop photo editor.
A Super Hero!
This year, the awards ceremony used a superhero theme and every winner received a trophy plus a Blue superhero cape (see image at top.) Chris loves her cape! It’s been a long time coming. Back at the turn of the century, Jim and Chris called themselves Your Computer Heroes and several clients threatened to buy them capes!