• http://www.highrankings.com/hrasubscribe Jill Whalen

    What a great illustration to show exactly how evil Google Search Plus really is. It will be interesting to see if all their push to get people to sign up at G+ has any real affect outside of the tech world.

  • http://www.nathanielbailey.co.uk Nathaniel Bailey

    Nice article Danny, I happy someone has gone out and done this to show Google how they should be doing their job to please everyone and give the most relevant and up-to-date social listings on google, because as we all know G+ is not always (and not even 1/3 of the time IMO) the best social site to be top of the listings when looking for something current or someones social account to follow or contact them.

    I will most definitely be installing this on my PC at home for personal use, but I don’t think it would be wise to install it on the work PC in case it gives incorrect results for our clients positions in the SERP’s, so maybe not a tool for SEO’s just yet.

  • http://blog.nexcerpt.com/ N.C.

    Excellent, complete rundown of the differences… saved me two hours of goofing with it myself!

    PS: For posterity (since we’ll return to this piece later, to evaluate when Google jumped the shark), in pointing to Zuckerberg, I believe you mean your ~other~ “left” (and your ~other~ “right” ;-)

  • http://www.andymatthews.net Andy Matthews

    Isn’t this just Facebook and Twitter wanting what they told Google what it couldn’t have? From what I read tweets used to show up in Google results but Twitter chose not to review it’s agreement with Google. As for Facebook, they’ve NEVER allowed Google to get at it’s content.

    So why should they now say that Google is being evil by not showing their content?

  • http://www.jcthomas.com Jim Thomas

    Danny, Thank you for the thoughtful article. This was a great exorcise for me regarding Google’s Search Plus Feature.

  • davep

    As usual, brilliant a round up. Impressive that this can be done by a third party using Javascript, without direct access to the backend – yet Google (you know, the the ones that made a self-driving car) claim it is impossible. Not just failing to serve users (and webmasters) – but insulting their intelligence too.

  • dbin78

    Interesting and well built. Although, I would not say it is backed by Facebook or Twitter just because it was built by some of their employees.

    As for the on going debate… where are my public +1’s on Bing? Essentially Google has made a data deal with Google+, just like Bing has with Facebook. Just because Google is dominant does not make their search results come under the control of the public or government. They can do what they want as a private company.

    Walmart is dominate right? So why don’t they display the prices of their products at Target? Many of Target’s prices are cheaper, but Walmart’s size and slogan give the perception that they offer a better deal.

  • http://www.kainoto.com/marketing-trzenje-clanki.aspx Dušan Vrban

    When Facebook will be open and the content will be property of people, they can surely complain. Even more, when in their search people will find my Google+ profile, they can talk about not being evil.

    But for now, if I search for my name in Facebook, I only get listed my Facebook profile.

    Thinking about creating an “be Evil” browser plugin that would “ehnance” Facebook and Twitter search in a way that they would show G+ profiles. :-)

  • -jme-

    I certainly agree with what you are saying when using the search function in this context, but the idea of this tool is more than that. The idea is to show relevant information from people within your social circle, for instance if you are searching for music and songs that your friends had linked would appear making it more relevant to the user. If you were searching for a restaurant, posts about restaurants from friends that were based near your location would be included. This is the type of personal data that is not provided from twitter and facebook that Google cannot include in search plus. If other social networks were to provide this information then the tool would be able to be fully integrated. Again I agree that in this context there can biased towards google pages however the option is there to use the real world function and find links not related to Google+.

  • jhuman

    Neat fun tool. Now, only if there was a feature that allowed complete source propagation to validate if the information is true or not.

  • Chas

    I guess my criticism is that the ‘don’t be evil’ button is clunkily engineered like features on Fakebook- it’s main redeeming quality is it’s name. It is only a matter of time before Google
    patches this hole, that your article has pointed out. Fortunately, there are alternatives to Google, such as Gigablast, or Blekko.

  • TimmyTime

    I would love to see one more that replaces Google Local with better ones from Yelp, InsiderPages and more. It’s clear to everyone that in almost all cases, Google Local is inferior so it surely isn’t best for the user :)

    I think it’s fair to ask what else is not “best for the users” in Google’s display or algo.

    Kudos to Blake for thinking outside of the Plex and pwning Google at their own game.

  • ThomasThatsMe

    If facebook/twitter wanted to truly be “not evil” they would done the following..

    1. Shown the person/company’s site vs showing their Facebook page. I think it is hilarious that when you search for “cars” you actually see Ferrari’s fb, google, and youtube page, but nowhere can you find Ferarri’s actual site. Isn’t that more relevant and less evil.

    2. have the autosuggestion go to the person’s site. If you search for Matt Cutts wouldn’t the ideal site to go to be MattCutts.com ?

  • http://www.kainoto.com/marketing-trzenje-clanki.aspx Dušan Vrban

    And there it is, the “Be evil” tool for Facebook:



  • http://www.tomhermans.com tomhermans

    So they rewrite the link from G+ to Twitter.. waw, that’s major objective..
    Know what, maybe open up OUR content ?? Cuz you only provide a service Twitter, FB, and still you insist keeping it from the world..

    Way to go on showing who exactly is evil..
    (btw, I thought Twitter had more sense than partnering up with FB…)

  • http://www.AccessFirefox.org Ken Saunders

    Don’t Be Evil restartless Firefox add-on has been released.

    “Packages the bookmarklet from http://focusontheuser.org/ into an add-on, so that the changes are automatically applied to all Google search result pages.”

    I believe that others are working on one for Chrome (and others).

  • http://www.agmontpetit.com Alex G. Montpetit

    How come Facebook is behind an initiative called “focus on the user” when they don’t even let their users export their data to other social networks?

    Furthermore, Search Plus Your World is also about searching personal information, not only brands and pages. Along with the bookmarklet, why they don’t open Facebook so Google can crawl personal data if the users gives the permission?

  • jc_armor

    http://www.focusontheuser.org/dontbeevil/script.js -> open source script, based on checking the script, it does a google search on a term (top 100) and added add-on script to ‘find-replace’ based on listed social networks. As far as social data (likes, tweet count), the script just calls out the fb like button script and twitter script. So technically, Google doesn’t have these social data.

  • http://cgmasson.com Callum Masson

    I think it is a bit rich listening to Twitter and Facebook complaints on this – let us not forget that basically all these companies are monetising what we produce and I therefore have little compunction to care which of G+, Twitter, Facebook etc etc ‘wins’

    I hate – hate – social search. If I want to surface stuff from Twitter, i’ll go to Twitter

  • http://lee-phillips.org Lee Phillips

    There is nothing new about Google cooking its search results so that each user gets a different, personalized results page. Using google+ data is just more of the same.

  • http://www.wajam.com Wajam

    As a social search startup, we thought it’d be relevant for readers to see our stance on this issue. So here’s the official Wajam video reply in which we compare social results from Google Search+ Your World and our own, in which we also add Facebook and Twitter results: http://bit.ly/AumfoK

    In the end, it’s about giving users the freedom of choice, and providing them with the most relevant social search results. If people use Google for search, and Facebook for social, there has to be a way to bridge the gap, and that’s the problem we’re solving.

  • http://yieldcalculator.org Alan

    Was posted to reddit.com http://www.reddit.com/r/technology/comments/otmi1/google_dont_be_evil_tool/ and it appears care factor was 0 amongst non SEO people.

  • rlaw

    Wow… that’s a whole lot of work when you could just hit the globe button in the upper right of the results. Google’s already ahead of these guys.

  • http://www.lycos.com Steve Skroce

    Or everyone could switch back to Lycos and be done with all of this nonsense.

  • http://amulethut.com Amulet Hut

    Google Plus is something to have and post to from somewhere else. Meaning the actual profile pages are hard to access and also difficult to socialize.. try again google.. i give it a minus.
    And their preferential algorythms are easy to interpret and attain search results as easily as it was 5 years ago. Having said this, we all like to criticize google but in fact they have lots of wonderful services all for free, which doesn’t really give us much right to complain

  • Rahul Dhesi

    I have made a fairly long posting on Google Plus (URL included below) that disagrees with your blog postings in which you argue that Google should provide extra links to Twitter and Facebook profiles the same way it is currently providing links to Google Plus profiles. Here’s a 7-point summary.

    1. The term “unbiased” when talking about search results from Google has always meant that you could not pay Google to change the ranking of search results. The extra links to Google Plus profiles that we see in the redesigned Google Plus Your World search results do not change the ranking of search results.

    2. The extra links to Google Plus profiles that we see in the redesigned Google Search Plus Your World search results are a type of advertising. As with any other advertising, this advertising imposes a cost on us the users, because it takes up some of our time and some screen space.

    3. Google owes no duty of fairness to Twitter or Facebook.

    4. If Google added extra links to Twitter and Facebook profiles in addition to the current extra links to Google Plus profiles, this would cause two types of harm.

    4a. Harm to us users: The extra links would be a type of advertising that would impose an additional cost upon us.

    4b. Harm to Google: Google would be providing free advertising to Twitter and Facebook at its own expense.

    5. Antitrust law does not apply to this situation.

    6. Social connections improve search results. The individual user’s social connections to not only Google Plus users, but also to Twitter and Facebook users, should be included in search results.

    7. Twitter, Facebook, and Myspace engineers are trying in a sneaky manner to get you to add advertising links to serve their companies at no cost to them but at a cost to you.

    URL for my Google Plus posting:



  • https://plus.google.com/109717610044761452561 Alexander Edbom

    And if Marc wanted to be fair, he would let us import facebook friends to Google+..

  • SadToSayIt

    Who cares?

  • http://blog.clayburngriffin.com/ Clayburn Griffin

    It’s not evil.  They’re Google.  They have Google information much more easily available.  And they want to promote it anyway.  They shouldn’t have to depend on Twitter and Facebook, especially when both networks make a point of not giving Google the access level it wants.  They can’t have it both ways.  Either play by Google’s rules or Google will play without you.