Twitter slams Google search changes


Twitter has claimed Google's 'Search plus Your World' changes announced yesterday marked a "bad day for the internet."

Former Google lawyer Alex Macgillivray, now Twitter's general counsel for policy, trust and safety, took to Twitter to raise his qualms with Google's decision to rope Google+ further into the search fold.

"Having been there, I can imagine the dissension @Google to search being warped this way," Macgillivray said.

We think that's bad for people, publishers, news organisations and Twitter users.

In an official statement, Twitter said it was concerned the changes would mean users would not get the most relevant results.

"Twitter has emerged as a vital source of this real-time information, with more than 100 million users sending 250 million Tweets every day on virtually every topic. As we've seen time and time again, news breaks first on Twitter; as a result, Twitter accounts and tweets are often the most relevant results," a spokesperson for the micro-blogging service said.

"We're concerned that as a result of Google's changes, finding this information will be much harder for everyone. We think that's bad for people, publishers, news organisations and Twitter users."

Google's changes amount to three key additions. The first is the Personal Results feature, which presents users with contacts' Google+ posts and photos for whatever terms they search.

The second major addition is Profiles in Search, which means when users search for a friend's name, Google will bring up a personalised profile prediction in autocomplete.

The new People and Pages feature links the other two additions by finding people profiles and Google+ pages related to a specific topic.

Google has been attempting to make search more personalised for some time. In 2009, it launched its Social Search initiative designed to rank content linked to people's social circles higher up in results.

Tom Brewster

Tom Brewster is currently an associate editor at Forbes and an award-winning journalist who covers cyber security, surveillance, and privacy. Starting his career at ITPro as a staff writer and working up to a senior staff writer role, Tom has been covering the tech industry for more than ten years and is considered one of the leading journalists in his specialism.

He is a proud alum of the University of Sheffield where he secured an undergraduate degree in English Literature before undertaking a certification from General Assembly in web development.