More Government Control: Google Realtime Search Goes Offline – Try Instead Topsy :)
Google Realtime Search had mysteriously disappeared. Today comes the reason why: Google’s agreement with Twitter to carry its results has expired, taking with it much of the content that was in the service with it.
Google sent us this explanation:
Since October of 2009, we have had an agreement with Twitter to include their updates in our search results through a special feed, and that agreement expired on July 2.
While we will not have access to this special feed from Twitter, information on Twitter that’s publicly available to our crawlers will still be searchable and discoverable on Google.
Google also stressed that went Google Realtime Search relaunches — something it says will happen but with no set time frame — it will include content from a variety of sources and not just be solely devoted to Google+ material. The company said:
Our vision is to have google.com/realtime include Google+ information along with other realtime data from a variety of sources.
Google Realtime Search had carried content from a variety of services beyond Twitter, including Facebook fan page updates. When we last wrote about the service in April, when it added Quora and Gowalla content, this was the full source list:
- Twitter tweets
- Google News links
- Google Blog Search links
- Newly created web pages
- Freshly updated web pages
- FriendFeed updates
- Jaiku updates
- Identi.ca updates
- TwitArmy updates
- Google Buzz posts
- MySpace updates
- Facebook fan page updates
Still, as said, Twitter was the by far the most dominant content within the service. It’s unclear why the agreement was allowed to expire. Twitter sent me this:
Since October 2009, Twitter has provided Google with the stream of public tweets for incorporation into their real-time search product and other uses. That agreement has now expired. We continue to provide this type of access to Microsoft, Yahoo!, NTT Docomo, Yahoo! Japan and dozens of other smaller developers. And, we work with Google in many other ways.
For its part, Google said:
Twitter has been a valuable partner for nearly two years, and we remain open to exploring other collaborations in the future.
I’d say we have a bit of a standoff.
One reason I’d expect Twitter would do a deal with Google sometime soon is that otherwise, people largely have no way to locate tweets that are older than a few days.