Posted August 4, 2011 4:09 pm by with 9 comments

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From devastating disasters to celebrity slips, a single mention on Twitter can turn into a trend in a matter of minutes. That’s why the micro-blogging site has been credited as the source for major breaking news stories and hundreds of high-profile rumors. Like it or love it, Twitter is a force to be reckoned with, so how is Google going to provide real-time news without it?

Last month, Google removed their Realtime search option after failing to come to an agreement with Twitter. They were still able to pull in posts from Facebook, but let’s be frank and say that Facebook isn’t exactly a bastion of breaking news.

Now, Mashable is reporting that Google is “actively working” on bringing Realtime back, only with Google+ as the main source of data. As the article reads, Google’s Amit Singhal didn’t say they wouldn’t be courting Twitter, but it doesn’t sound like it’s a high priority, which is understandable when you have your own micro-blogging source in-house.

The hitch is that even once (if) Google+ becomes heavily trafficked, it’s likely that the postings will resemble those you find on Facebook. Google already admitted, that Facebook wasn’t very effective as a real-time news source, so how is Google+ going to be any better?

If I give them some benefit of the doubt, there is the fact that Google+ is more business and tech oriented, so it could be a better source than Facebook for industry specific news. Outside of that, I don’t see it.

The real test will happen when the next big news story breaks. I’m not wishing a major disaster on any area of the nation, but it’s going to happen and how the Google+ community responds will be very telling.

In May, Sysomos did an impromptu survey of the rise in Tweets after the death of Bin Laden. Some of the first mentions appeared on Twitter and within 12 hours, there were 2.2 million Tweets about Osama Bin Laden. That’s news in real-time. That’s what’s happening now. I just don’t see how Google can move forward without that kind of speed and clout.

  • I agree, I can’t imagine Google+ becoming a source for breaking news, unless it’s tech related, and more specifically Google related. To be honest, had not even noticed Goog pulled real time search, I prefer my real time info via twitter.

  • Google+ is horrible for news.. They censored many people and banned anyone that had a voice.
    I know tons of people that love google but refuse to use google+. Since google+ only allows what they approve of..they will be like fox news… only show what they want the world to think whats going on… not whats really going on. I shun google for censorship.

  • I love Google+ but stongly against censorship.
    I will wait until Google changes how they run this + feature.

  • Nfkraemer

    Don’t forget the search you receive from G+ might be the most meaningful if pulls from posts of people in your circles. Let’s say I am searching for a new Android phone and I follow a bunch of wonderful techies, family, friends, coworkers, etc… I will also see posts about what those people in my circles think.

    • Cynthia Boris

      But if it pulls from people I know then I can just visit my news feed on the page. The point of Realtime is to see what’s going on all over the world not just in my circle.

  • Randy

    Google should buy Twitter. Twitter servers still can’t handle the flow, which is why everyone knows the “fail whale”. They’re also apparently trying to stifle third party apps, which would leave us with their lame access. If Google owned them, maybe we’d finally get rid of the fail whale, and see even better clients.

  • I’m glad Google is bringing Realtime search back, but I don’t see how it will be as useful without the information from Twitter. Google+ just doesn’t have the same amount of information that Twitter does. I think it’ll bring the value of Realtime search way down.

  • I was really upset about Google dumping the real time search, I used it almost everyday please bring back the real time search on Google.

  • I completely agree, real time results are imperative in today’s world where information moves so fast.
    Imagine what kind of info would be accessible on Google right now about the London Riots or the stock market if Google had real-time.

    Also, thanks for sharing our Sysomos report here!

    Sheldon, community manager for Sysomos