Scott Olsen

Scott Olsen, a Marine injured during a protest in Oakland, has found a new outlet for expression on Google+.

It hasn’t taken long for Scott Olsen to gain a lot more friends on Google+.

Just days after being released from a California hospital, Olsen, 24, took to Google’s social outlet to inform friends and followers of his recovery.

Olsen was injured on Tuesday, Oct. 25 while protesting at Occupy Oakland. The former Marine, who has done two tours in Iraq, suffered minor brain damage after being struck in the head by either a tear-gas canister or a beanbag fired from a gun. Oakland Police had been ordered by the city’s mayor to evict Olsen and other protesters.

The scene that unfolded hit YouTube soon after, and made Olsen a cause célèbre among supporters of the Occupy movement.

Olsen temporally lost the ability to speak and has recently begun speech therapy. But even if his speech has been impaired, his message hasn’t and he has chosen Google+ to keep people up to date on his recovery.

Some say Google+ is becoming a better place for serious conversation than Twitter’s short, joke-prone messages. Olsen, at least, is finding it a good fit for expressing himself.

“I’m feeling a lot better, with a long road in front of me,” Olson wrote on Sunday, along with a picture of him wearing a neck brace. “After my freedom of speech was quite literally taken from me, my speech is coming back but I’ve got a lot of work to do with rehab.”

Olsen went on to thank his followers for well wishes and said to keep an eye on his profile for more updates of his recovery.

Within a few days of breaking his silence on Google+, Olson gained hundreds of new followers and as of Tuesday he had 2,114. The post about his recovery was shared more than 600 times and received hundreds of more messages of support.

“Very happy to see you here Scott. I look forward to following your progress and hope to encourage you along the way,” Kat Tansey wrote.

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