Google has acquired deals with MySpace and Facebook allowing real-time updates posted by publicly-posting users to be part of a real-time index on Google.
Recently Twitter signed a similar deal with the search giant, and the two new partnerships are reported to be going live on Google throughout all English language domains starting this week.
What is a real-time search?
When a user searches a particular keyword phrase or topic, real-time updates from various social media sites including MySpace, Facebook and Twitter will appear in the search engine results page, along with the regular search results.
Prior to these changes, people searching various current events would only find news reports or Wikipedia entries on the topics, but not real-time information or opinions in Google searches. A visit to search.twitter.com would be the only way to search through Twitter updates as events are occurring.
Now, Google and Bing are forming partnerships with social media and social networking sites to create more relevant and real-time search results. On the flip side of the coin, these search engines will have to work out how and when to serve users with real-time results, since real-time results are not always relevant to a person’s search.
One of the most essential components of search to a user is the speed at which results become available, but there’s another part of speed beyond how quickly a user accesses the information – how quickly the search engine can index the information in order for it to be searched and found.
Although Google remains tight-lipped about financial terms of the agreements with the social media sites, the chief operating officer of Facebook stated Facebook is receiving no financial gain from allowing public status updates to be available to Google.