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Google Search Wiki

Written by David Harry   
Thursday, 20 November 2008 18:16

Wiki or prelude to social search?

Don’t like those search results Google is giving you? Change them… In an interesting twist the folks at Google have let the cat out of the bag with a feature that graduated from Google labs some dubbed 'Social Search' - a system where users can annotate, save and re-organize a given query space.

Google is rolling out the 'Search Wiki' service starting today and the product manager hopes will  “(give) a user more control over their search results”.

Search Wiki


Google Talk

Now, this is only going to be for people that are actively logged in to their Google accounts and is a deeper level of personalization that we’ve ½ been expecting for some time now – but what will the spammers make of it?

Google’s Marissa Mayer was quoted as saying that it won’t affect natural organic search listings with a cryptic twist;

At this time we aren’t using SearchWiki to influence ranking but it is easy to see how that could happen in the future

And product manager Cedric Dupont echoed that by saying;

"We don't close any doors. We constantly evaluate signals - Search is adapting to the Internet as it becomes a more participatory medium. Now you have people telling us specific things about how they'd like to see their search results."

This could be specifically troubling for the web spammers as Dupont went on to say;

"You could imagine if we do see a particular site (about which) people have a unanimous opinion, that might trigger external things. Like maybe we should check out our spam control,”

Google Search Wiki


A sign of things to come?

While the re-ranking features are personal, the annotations apparently are public – which should make for some great entertainment to be sure. If not controlled I can see the spam being massive which begs the question; will it be valuable?

And they’re not alone with this one as Microsoft also has an experiment with user interactive searches called Urank

Here’s a vid from Google and an earlier one of someone playing with it in the Google Labs stage of development ( I haven’t seen the changes in my Google searches yet)

Google's New Social Voting Features - video powered by Metacafe

Read more;

Coverage on Cnet
Article on the NY Times
October write up on Google System
Read Write Web coverage (Oct as well)
Search Engine Land coverage


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