Is Google Playing Monkey Games With Real Time Search

Last week Google launched real time SERP’s, which included the possibility for twitter and facebook updates to appear in searches for popular information, news, or for someone’s name. The potential for libel and potential for spam has already been discussed. What hasn’t been addressed is the problems it can create for reputation management. Specificall, how it can create problems for everyone … everyone, that is, except Google Employees …

First off, we need a list of Google employees and their twitter handles. While this list isn’t exhaustive, it does have a number of  high profile figures, or people that I have met or interacted with:

That’s 23 high-profile, well-known, public Google employees, none of whom will have to deal with the problems of twitter real time results displaying in the SERP for their names. Surely that distinction is a coincidence. Now, if this were a real life discussion, the nearest Googler would chime in with the “correlation isn’t causation” reasoning, which happens to be true. The problem is I’ve heard that line one too many times from Google employees.  At this point, it seems more like a Mountain View version of Godwin’s Law. Google employees invoke it when they don’t like where the questioning is going, and they want to end the discussion.

See, we’ve still got those 23 employees with no real time twitter streams… Pulling the “correlation isn’t causation” reasoning is a bit like the Cardassian who tried to get Captain Jean Luc Picard to admit to seeing five lights when there were only four…


C’mon Google. Why are you polluting Dave Naylor’s SERP with twitter results but not your employees? Why are you polluting Lisa Barone’s results yet you don’t show your own engineers? What don’t you guys like about Tony Adam that makes you want to give twitter the ability to create problems for him?

What is it Google? Are the tweets of your own employees not quality content? Are they not trustworthy enough? Are they not relevant? Or is there a secret hidden agenda? If you want to talk about the benefits of real time tweets to the SERP for a person’s name, then you have to be willing to deal with the potential for having your own reputation management problems…

Put your money where your mouth is. And if you aren’t willing to, then put an end to the bad idea before someone does get hurt.
photo credit: Chovee

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