Google Social Search Comes to Australia
Social Search from Google is here, in response to Bing’s high level integration of Facebook data. Social Search gives precedence in search results to people that you know in real life and online, based on your friend lists on Google social media sites. Though Google has been doing social search since 2009, it is only recently that they expanded this effort outside of the United States to Australia.
Though Google uses mostly social media information from its own sites, as Bing has gone into business with the other 800 pound gorilla in the room, there is plenty of data to go around only inside Google. Google can include results from your friends from your Google Contacts, the people you follow in Google Buzz and Google Reader, your Google Contacts, and all of the linked networks that you interact with from your Google account or Google profile.
Google can also use information from other public sites like Twitter, and can find your friends and check to see to what networks and people they are connected to. These will also receive precedence in your search results. This all combines to give your searches a sort of seven degrees of separation from the people whom you trust the most.
In your Google Dashboard, you can view and change how Google is listing your search results. There is a new Social Circle and Content section in the Dashboard, from which a user can view their entire social circle, including direct Google connections from chats, profiles, and connected accounts. It will show you which of these people in your social circle have content, and on what sites they have this content. The only group of friends that is missing is the Facebook group, because as previously mentioned, Bing has already laid claim to this valuable resource.
You can also remove people from your social circle if you so desire.
Google has next in the works a “+1” button, which is similar to the “Like” button which Facebook has basically integrated into the entire fabric of the Internet. Google is also hard at work at fixing the gaping holes left by not being able to use Facebook lists, which seems to be less of a hurdle than one may think. Google accounts are at the center of many well known and widely used web applications, including GMail, Docs, Chrome, and the mighty Youtube.