Posted October 22, 2009 8:50 am by with 6 comments

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on Google+Share on FacebookBuffer this page

Facebook Twit and bingBig day yesterday. Bing announces it is getting Twitter results for its index ahead of Google announcing the same thing. I wonder if that is a balm for Mr.Ballmer that at least he one-upped Google on one occasion. But wait there appears to be yet another rabbit that Microsoft can pull out of its hat. Drum roll please. It’s Facebook! Ok, before we move on which is your favorite; Facebing, bingbook, MicroFace, In Your Face Google or something else? Your input is required ;-).

Microsoft is showing some chutzpah in getting aggressive by striking deals with the largest public provider of real search data (Twitter) and arguably THE largest, but not completely public, gatherer of information about what people are doing as you read this.
The Telegraph reports

Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s chief operating officer, has confirmed its search deal with Microsoft’s Bing is expected to launch within two months and that Facebook isn’t making any money from the arrangement.

Talking exclusively to the Telegraph at the Web 2.0 conference in San Francisco, Ms Sandberg said: “We should have our public updates integrated into a Bing beta within a couple of months. Unlike Twitter’s data stream, which is already totally public, we have to be very careful about making sure the correct data is streamed.”

This is big news for the search and social media industries as the lines blur further and further. It’s a natural progression, in that it makes sense to be able to search what is being said in real time as well as index alk of this information. Why it hasn’t happened until this point is not about logic but rather it’s about business. It’s easy to sit on the sidelines and write about how it makes sense and why isn’t anyone doing it but it’s quite another to make these things happen so there is business benefit to all involved.

On that point it is interesting that Ms. Sandberg is trying to make it look like Facebook is taking the high road and saying that Facebook does not intend to make money from its data. Huh? Please don’t say that you think we are either that stupid or gullible. It’s the data that you have and the further reach of that data that will make advertisers come to you with their wallets open. OK so there may not be any fees attached for access but there are dollar signs attached to the move for sure.

So this should be interesting for sure. Sandberg made sure to put aside any fears about the data privacy that has been one of the attractive features of Facebook will not be compromised.

Facebook will only stream data from users who have set their privacy settings to “everyone on web”, which Ms Sandberg thinks will allay anyone’s concerns about breaches of confidence.

“Only people who have agreed to share their updates with everyone on the web will have their updates streamed to Bing. This move is about giving people more choices about how they share their information,” she said.

So will you make your information available to everyone? That is the real question here. Facebook has a shady history of TOS shenanigans so it will be important that those who are not savvy (which I venture is the vast majority of Facebook users) are educated as to whether they are or are not opted in to having their information on display for the entire world and not just their friends. I think that will be the real test of how this works or not.

As for me, I am not sure whether I want the world to see everything I do on Facebook. I am doing nothing illegal or immoral (as for matters of taste that is up for debate) but I also like the fact that not everyone is looking at the stuff I put up there. So, let’s sit back and wonder how this will play out. Will it be a winner or just a really good press release? Your take?

  • It will be interesting to see exactly what data is streamed, especially since facebook is much more private than twitter, and I doubt most people on FB will want their updates being plastered all over the web.
    .-= Aaron´s last blog ..Bing announces search for Twitter feeds =-.

  • Yes- Facebook, primarily a place real friends talk to each other- and Twitter, primarily a place people talk to their friends- and others, as in any one who follows, are completely separate on privacy issues.
    It is a pandoras box… we’ll see what it brings.

  • Sam Leems

    It will be interesting to see what Facebook data will be placed on Bing because the clutter, nonsense, and just plain garbage on Facebook is monumental. When was the last time you picked up a stranger hitchhiking? Well are you going to begin believing any anonymous pros or cons about a particular product or service? Does anyone think that many of the comments are self serving by owners and competitors?

  • From a users point of view, Facebook is a great way to connect with friends. Its a free service so i’m not complaining.

  • It’s tricky enough, at present, getting a good return on your search without filling SERPs with Facebook and Twitter ramblings.

    What the search engines should concentrate on is improving their general search and making these more consistent.
    .-= Marketing Recruitment´s last blog ..SEO Specialist (SP) =-.

  • I agree with MR. The results need to be in a sidebar or something, not integrated into the main results. This just seems to be making the search (or decision) experience worse, not better.
    .-= ChrisCD´s last blog ..Best IRA Certificate of Deposit Rates – October 2009 =-.