I'm Surprised Google Made SearchWiki The Default, Really

Nov 21, 2008 • 8:38 am | comments (11) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under Google Search Engine

The blogosphere is buzzing about Google's announcement that they have made Google SearchWiki the default for users who are signed into Google while searching.

What this means is that users will see features to promote, delete and comment on search results. This is advanced searcher stuff. I am really a bit surprised Google pushed this to every Google account user as the default. Why? (1) As Arrington said, it wasn't broken originally - well, some would disagree with that. (2) It is confusing for the average searcher, no?

Do you think the average searcher is ready for it? Take the poll directly below this line:

Okay, so some basics that might not be clear to every reader of this site:

  • This only changes your search results, no one elses
  • You must be signed in to use it
  • You can change the results back

For SEOs, will this impact the future of search? Well, yes and no. Clearly, people can now promote and remove sites, so you may benefit or not from that. But will Google use this data to improve their overall algorithms? I would suspect so, on some level. But with any Wiki-like system, it can be spammed, so I doubt Google will rely on this data too much.

That being said, let's get our SEO and promote me higher. There is this other Barry Schwartz who uses Barry Schwartz in his title tag. He wrote some books to play with people's heads. He is much older. He spoke at Google. He is much cooler. But I am in the SEO crowd, so I should rank #1. No?

Here is the current default results for barry schwartz in Google:

Google SearchWiki

Now, go down to my personal blog, CartoonBarry.com and promote it.

Google SearchWiki

It will then pop up this window, say "yes."

Google SearchWiki

It then should put my blog at the top for you:

Google SearchWiki

Click on the comment bubble on the right of the result and leave me a witty comment:

Google SearchWiki

Thank you!

Forum discussion at Cre8asite Forums, WebmasterWorld, Sphinn and DigitalPoint Forums.

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Igor The Troll

11/21/2008 02:10 pm

Is this truly the beginning of semantic search or just another bookmarking site?


11/21/2008 02:35 pm

why shouldnt be users ready for this? they just change their personal results, so it is good for the users and nobody can do something about it. Pages which just use some technolgy to get a better rank can now be just deleted from my results because I just know that the real content is crap and on the other side I can push some pages for myself.

No Name

11/21/2008 03:09 pm

homeworks done! By the way, when I first made the search (and it´s the first time that I find these Keyword) your blog was in 3rd position above the youtube video of the other barry. And when I cliked up, it told me that I was the 4th to vote. Then it seems that the wiki is really sensible to the votes...

Corey Creed

11/21/2008 03:20 pm

I'm still not seeing this option. Apparently, they have not rolled it out to everyone. I've been asking around on Twitter and posting on my blog. It seems like as of Friday at 10:00 or so, several of us do not have this feature live.


11/21/2008 04:36 pm

The main problem with this is the non-moderated comments. You can now go to anybody's website and flame them for all to see. Matt Cutts' blog is already starting to get a bunch of these comments.


11/21/2008 07:13 pm

it really only changes personal results... and then it rolls into a collective area where you can see what people as a whole are voting and demoting. from what i read i don't think it effects normal listings. it sounds like a digg model but with a round about way to get to the collective results to me :) i still can't see the voting icons though, so sorry barry i can't vote you up yet!


11/21/2008 07:31 pm

"But with any Wiki-like system, it can be spammed, so I doubt Google will rely on this data too much" You forget Barry that most of the people at Google seem to live in some fairytale world and have no grasp of the real world. I think we might find that manipulating such a wiki will work very well ... until someone at Google with some faint grasp of reality wakes up to what's happening.

William Fernandez

11/22/2008 01:38 am

Should be interesting to see this one develop. Seems simple and logical, but the potential for clutter and abuse seems just as high...

Jaan Kanellis

11/22/2008 06:14 am

Does this really matter? How many users have, will or ever know what a Google account is? I can ask all my friends and family what it is and they will all say...huh?


02/16/2009 07:32 pm

Medicine is moving towards DNA analysis and tailoring treatment/medication/dosage to individual characteristics... So is the search world? Search results good for you are not necessarily good for me, but personal tailoring is fine, eh?

No Name

02/17/2009 09:29 pm

Might work objectively for highly searched topics - but for e.g. industry-topics with low search numbers and high turn-overs there is a strong risk for abuse (clicking away / deleting competitors).

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