• http://www.ides.com pottern

    I’m curious how the google “decides” what search terms to post in Real Search, or do they just let them all flow through for now?

  • Jake-Matthews

    Wow, Danny, that’s some post you put together there. No question there should be a space for real-time results. I’m not a big fan of the scrolling and there’s no doubt that things are widening for spam opportunities, which is not a great thing for users at all.

    Real time is here to stay, but the major SE’s really need to think hard about integration and not just “jump in” b/c others are.

  • http://www.senser.net gsenser

    Good insight as always. It is funny that search engines might be more willing to pay for what people say about the news, rather than the news itself. Very counter-intuitive!

  • http://silvery.com Chris Silver Smith

    Beyond the mere spam issue, isn’t it fair to ask whether some content, even realtime tweets, actually merits having a voice that’s equally as loud as the biggest name-brands?

    For instance, I’d experimented yesterday and found that I could immediately get content to appear on the first page of search results for searches for “Coca-Cola” merely by Tweeting about it:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/silvery/4175132328/

    It’s all well and good, and I love the egalitarian and democratic nature of the internet and all, but I don’t know that it’s a good idea to render any tom-dick-and-harry’s words about Coca-Cola so immediately prominent and visible.

    While all of us marketers wish to have the power to make our clients rank on page one, we mostly have only influence rather than direct control, and Google’s various ranking factors and algorithms damp down and balance our influence with some degrees of — dare I say it — “fairness” (admittedly there are many arguments, pro and con, as to just how fair certain policies and factors are, and even their attempt to mitigate the power of money versus relative merit is only so successful).

    But, in this case, the product has been pitched into production so hastily that there seem to be few balancing factors included whatsoever.

    We’ve all seen cases where a blogstorm breaks out in the blogosphere, shining light and attention upon unflattering aspects of companies and individuals. But, the more prominent the individual or company, probably the more “buzz” must strike before a particularly unflattering post will hit page one. If it’s just a post from a random crank who has little attention from other bloggers, it’s maybe less likely to reach sufficient “buzz” to really do all that much damage. So, there’s at least some amount of balance involved, somehow…

    I don’t have a problem with something abruptly ranking, if it’s somewhat balanced by some degree of prominence comparable to what it’s ranking against. So, if a sufficiently prominent individual/organization like Oprah abruptly stated that she was going into the Betty Ford clinic for a Cocacola addiction, or if Arnold Schwarzenegger stated that the water in Cokes didn’t meet California’s water purity standards — that would make sense to have appear rapidly in the SERPs.

    But, I’d ask: is it really fair that anyone could potentially say any crazy thing and have it show up immediately, smack on page one of SERPs for “Coca Cola”? Even in the wonderfully democratic test-tube of the internet, should the post of a random crazy person rank on page one, smack alongside the website of a major corporation that has thousands of employees and millions of stockholders? Is that truly fair?

  • http://www.ericward.com Eric Ward

    The option to one-click toggle-off any livestream source will have to be implimented sooner or later. I find the it just gets in the way. Like when a music video TV show has live IM’s scrolling along the screen. That or I’m just old :) If I searchfor golf news, I could care less if @whoever thinks Tiger Woods is a weenie.

    Push the stream over to a sidebar, long ways, like I do in Gmail with that twitter app thing. Launch livestream source data in daughter mini windows. Do something better than this. Google Search is/was supposed to be about trust, especially above the fold.

    Now, with tweetstreams and product links and news or image universal inserts, many search results don’t have a true algorithmic based organic result until below the scroll. That’s a pretty remarkable shift in what we all expect from them. Just give us a check box to toggle this non organic stuff, and see what we do with it. I will agree that depending on my search, I might want to see tweets (a ballgame I’m not at but want updates). Other times, I don’t want tweets at all.

    In any event, I got ten bucks that says scrolling livestreaming will go away, at least from top page of Google’s real estate. Oh yeah, Real Estate. That’s another vert they are in that can reduce organic search result space even further. Imagine a day when the first organic algo driven result is on page two. As for organic position, I don’t see the order changing much for the highest merit content, just the effort the user will need to go through to even see them. On the other hand, I’m doing screencast prodcution shorts now for my vert, which when posted I’ll tweet about, solely to make sure blended/universal/real-time search has some signals. But it’s a defensive strategic move more than a desire to make a bunch of screencasts. Still, I gotta say it is a great time to be in this biz, ay Danny? I need my kids to grow up quicker so they can manage my niche link curator contact list . Twello doesn’t list those folks :)

    Eric

  • online

    @pottern (+ others) re consorship:

    Apparently Google *does* censor the so-called “real time” results (this seems counter-intuitive, since the way I understand “real time” is that they are not filtered / censored / ranked / evaluated in any way). See e.g. http://stat.eu.com/google-offers-a-search-product-with-censored

    Traditionally, Google has maintained that the keywords a user enters into the search box are the main criteria for judging the relevance of webpages to the requested information (over time Google has some refinements, such as search history, tracking what users click on, etc. — but note that a search I did an hour ago or yesterday may in fact not be a very good indicator of my present interest).

    However, my tests have shown that Google does NOT return “real time” results for queries that match the searched-for information. Therefore, it is quite clear that does in fact censor their so-called “real time” results.