John Paczkowski

Recent Posts by John Paczkowski

Results 1-10 for Your Search for “Pizza Joint Where Bill Got Food Poisoning”

socialsearch-thumbOn the heels of its deal to incorporate Twitter data into its search results, Google on Monday announced an experimental Labs feature that searches the social Web. Called Google Social Search, the new offering is intended to make search results more relevant by enhancing them with personalized social data.

As Google’s Maureen Heymans puts it, “Your friends and contacts are a key part of your life online. Most people on the web today make social connections and publish web content in many different ways, including blogs, status updates and tweets. This translates to a public social web of content that has special relevance to each person.”

So, for example, a search for a nearby restaurant would return not only the standard list of official Web sites and mainstream media reviews, but also informal comments made by friends on the Web.

It’s an interesting idea–using the blogs, status updates and tweets from trusted users to refine our searches and make them more personally relevant to us.

That said, there’s a fine line to be tread here between sharing information within a social network and protecting privacy. Of course, as Google (GOOG) notes, the information that it’s indexing is already published publicly on the Web and you need to be signed in to a Google account to access it. So presumably, information that isn’t public won’t show up in social search. Says Google: “What we’ve done is surface that content together in one single place to make your results more relevant.”

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