Google May Have Dropped Another Twitter Feature

    March 12, 2012
    Chris Crum
    Comments are off for this post.

The relationship between Google and Twitter has been somewhat rocky lately. Last year, the two companies were unable to reach an agreement that would continue to give Google access to the Twitter firehose to better its search results. For that reason, Google’s realtime search feature disappeared.

When Google launched “Search Plus Your World,” integrating Google+ content more heavily into its search results, Twitter raised a big stink about how it was bad for the Internet, and noting that Google should be showing Twitter results for some queries where it was favoring Google+ results.

Google’s response was:

“We are a bit surprised by Twitter’s comments about Search plus Your World, because they chose not to renew their agreement with us last summer (http://goo.gl/chKwi), and since then we have observed their rel=nofollow instructions.”

But Google does still show Twitter results, and it is in cases where Google has every right to show them, but doesn’t, that Twitter appears to have the biggest problem.

The tensions even led to the cancellation of a meeting between the two companies that may have otherwise resulted in a better Twitter experience on Android devices.

But that’s all old news at this point. There was an interesting post in WebmasterWorld about another subtle disconnect between Google and Twitter, which could be related to the deterioration of the relationship between the two companies, or could just be a coincidence. It’s interesting nonetheless.

WebmasterWorld member Sgt Kickaxe posted in the forum:

Im not sure if anyone’s noticed or written about this yet but the Twitter option in feedburner [webmasterworld.com] has gone awol. In fact the entire “socialize” option link now appears missing.

The service is still active (for now), you can manually navigate to the socialize page by typing the address in your navigation bar. old address: feedburner.google.com/fb/a/socialize?id=YOURIDHERE

What I liked about the service was that it automatically used Google’s shortening service for links which comes with analytics. At this point the service is still active though unreachable if you don’t know the address so it may be taken offline, eventually, or perhaps it will just stop accepting NEW connections but will not change existing connections, or?

Perhaps Google simply decided to stop promoting twitter altogether after their fallout over tweet indexing. Who knows.

My guess is that this is not directly related to the company politics between Google and Twitter. If that were the case, I’d expect other Twitter features to be missing from Google products as well – like the share on Twitter option from Google Reader or YouTube. Removal of things like this would hurt the user experience.

  • http://www.LAokay.com Steve G

    This is why Google+ will fail and will never become nothing more than a novelty. Google not only wants people to connect, they want them only to connect through their software and systems. Not twitter, not FaceBook, not even MySpace (is that still around? LOL). They’re trying every trick in the book and it ain’t working because of the popularity of Facebook and Twitter. They might as well integrate like everybody else is doing. I wouldn’t mind using Google+ if I could read my Facebook wall, my twitter feed, and post to both of them as well. I wouldn’t feel like I was loosing my friends, but gaining an integrated system to put all of it at my fingertips. I think that’s what we are missing with social networking, the system that puts it all together into one package. Not just one or a few social networks, but all of them. Google has the opportunity to tap into the social market, but they’re really going about it the wrong way.

  • http://www.walidmrealtor.com walidmrealtor

    Hard to imagine Google+ failing if you think of Google Plus as Google 2.0. Within that context Google 2.0 has far more users than any social media entity, in an ecosystem that has far more mature features than anything else on the web.

    It’s difficult to guess what’s going on with the twitter option in feedburner, until twitter or a bunch of feedburner’s users make a complaint…perhaps a glitch?

  • http://www.replica-sunglasses.co.uk/discount-sunglasses/view/116/ Lisa

    First of all google has the right to do what they want, its there house, so they have full rights to include or exclude. However twitter and other social are trying to beat google which they are not able to tats the reason the rift.

    And twitter is all about spamy internet marketing nothing else.

  • http://www.brickmarketing.com Nick Stamoulis

    I think Steve makes a good point. Social sites have to be willing to be integrated if they want to keep users happy. I use Google+, but I can’t wait for the day when I can update my Google+ account from Twitter or Facebook. I want an integrated experience! I think Google needs to accept that.

  • Matt Cutts

    I find myself using and loving Google+ more and more. I quit Facebook in disgust over privacy (they track you!) and use Twitter only when I want to reach a meaningful audience.

  • http://internivel.com Moises

    I would really miss the Socilize link in Feedburner. Hopefully Google will reactivate it but if they don’t i should start looking for a replacement. Do you have any suggestions about a service that could do a similar job?