Google signs search deal with Twitter, delivering blow to Bing

Only a few hours earlier, Microsoft announced it had signed a deal with Twitter and Facebook to include its users’ status updates in Bing’s search results, at the Web 2.0 conference in San Francisco.

Google has now retaliated, announcing a very similar sounding deal via its blog . The post said: “Given this new type of information and its value to search, we are very excited to announce that we have reached an agreement with Twitter to include their updates in our search results.

“We believe that our search results and user experience will greatly benefit from the inclusion of this up-to-the-minute data, and we look forward to having a product that showcases how tweets can make search better in the coming months. That way, the next time you search for something that can be aided by a real-time observation, say, snow conditions at your favorite ski resort, you’ll find tweets from other users who are there and sharing the latest and greatest information.”

There was no mention in the blog post about a tie-up with Facebook, and Sheryl Sandberg, the social networking company’s chief operating officer, remained tight-lipped about a potential Google search deal while on stage at Web 2.0. The former Google employee refused to be drawn in either direction, but did not deny that the link-up could happen.

When comparing Google to Facebook, Ms Sandberg said that the two companies were coming from different points of view about information sharing. “The question is how do you get the information you want? Google sources its information from strangers, whereas we believe in the wisdom of friends.”

Microsoft’s partnerships with Twitter and Facebook are not exclusive and the beta site, www.­bing.­com/­twitter went live today.

So-called "real-time" search is viewed as the next battleground for internet search, with web users tapping in to services such as Twitter to find out the hot topics of conversation and latest news at any given moment.

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