Under the name "Focus on the User,” a band of developers from Facebook, Twitter and MySpace are turning up the heat on Google and its new Search Plus Your World tool.
In response to the recently launched tool -- which appears to prioritize Google+ in Google's search results -- the group is challenging Google’s claim that there are technical limitations that curb its ability to include competitors' content.
“Facebook, Twitter and MySpace have a message for Google: ‘Don't be evil,’” reports CNNMoney.com.
In a "proof of concept" bit of software code, Focus on the User released a "bookmarklet" -- sarcastically named “Don’t be evil” -- that replaces Google.com's Search Plus Your World results with results from Google's regular, run-of-the-mill search algorithm.
What they found is that users aren’t getting the kind of relevance in results they’d expect -- “or as Google always claims it provides,” The Register writes.
As Search Engine Land explains, Google does seem to favor its own social networking service in auto-complete results in Google Instant and in site links on its search page.
As The Guardian explains: “The move intensifies the increasingly bitter war of words between Google, which is trying to push the ‘social’ element of searches, and the major social networks, which assert that the search engine is polluting its own search results and diverging from its core purpose of giving the user the best possible search by downgrading them in results.”
Notes the Los Angeles Times: “The bookmarklet isn't an official product of Facebook, Twitter or Myspace, but nobody seems to be shying away from the connection to those companies.”
Meanwhile, as The Wall Street Journal writes: “Google argues it needs to push into social media in order to bring its users more relevant information … Its executives have said that both Facebook and Twitter won’t allow Google to access content from their sites so that it can be properly displayed in Google search results.”