I’ve been involved since we first started testing authorship markup and displaying it in search results. We’ve gotten lots of useful feedback from all kinds of webmasters and users, and we’ve tweaked, updated, and honed recognition and displaying of authorship information. Unfortunately, we’ve also observed that this information isn’t as useful to our users as we’d hoped, and can even distract from those results. With this in mind, we’ve made the difficult decision to stop showing authorship in search results.
We’ve been doing lots of work to clean up the visual design of our search results, in particular creating a better mobile experience and a more consistent design across devices. As a part of this, we’re simplifying the way authorship is shown in mobile and desktop search results, removing the profile photo and circle count. (Our experiments indicate that click-through behavior on this new less-cluttered design is similar to the previous one.
Authorship works fine with Google+ custom/vanity URLs.
I’ve seen this come up more since custom/vanity URLs for Google+ profiles have become more popular. Authorship works fine with vanity profile URLs, it works fine with the numeric URLs, and it doesn’t matter if you link to your “about” or “posts” page, or even just to the base profile URL. The type of redirect (302 vs 301) also doesn’t matter here. If you want to have a bit of fun, you can even use one of the other Google ccTLDs and link to that.