Google Social Search Released as a Public Beta
Article by George Norman
On 29 Jan 2010
Last year Google rolled out the Social Search experiment. The experiment attempted to make search more personal by delivering you relevant search results from your broader social circle. The experiment was based on the premise that we make social connections and publish content to the web in various ways. Some write on their blog, some tweet, some update their status on Facebook, and so on. All this information has a different degree of relevance from one user to another – something that is relevant to you may not be relevant to another user. And that is where Social Search came in.

“Google Social Search is a feature designed to help you discover relevant publicly-accessible content from your social circle, a set of online friends and contacts. The idea is that content from your friends and social contacts is often more relevant to you than content from strangers. For example, a movie review from an expert is useful, but a movie review from your best friend can be even better,” says the official description of Social Search.


Your social circle, in case you don’t know this, is made up of your Gmail (or Google Talk) chat list, People in your Friends, Family, and Coworkers groups in your Google contacts, People you're publicly connected to through social services that you've listed in your Google profile, such as Twitter and FriendFeed, and people who are contacts of those in your immediate social circle. You can view your social circle by clicking here.

It seems things have been going well for Google and Social Search; the Mountain View-based search engine giant has announced that Social Search moved out of Google Labs, it has been released as a public Beta.

“We were excited by the number of people who chose to try it out, and today Social Search is available to everyone in beta on We think there's tremendous potential for social information to improve search, and we're just beginning to scratch the surface. We're leaving a "beta" label on social results because we know there's a lot more we can do. If you want to get the most out of Social Search right away, get started by creating a Google profile, where you can add links to your other public online social services,” explained Maureen Heymans, Technical Lead for Social Search, and Terran Melconian, Technical Lead for Social Image Search.

Social Search is being rolled out gradually on for all signed-in users.

Tags: Google, Social Search
About the author: George Norman
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