Has anyone else noticed the new tweets section when you click into full coverage pages of Google News?
Now when you click on a news cluster of stories from the front page, you’ll see related tweets aggregated in the right hand rail of Google News.
It’s been live for two weeks and uses the same technology as Google’s real-time search, Google told me. I noticed it by happenstance last week. After I wrote about the LG Thrive prepaid smartphone from AT&T, I tweeted the story per usual. Soon after, I was surfing Google News and saw this:
That’s me on the right! Or, my tweet with my mug anyway. Considering my story wasn’t currently in the story results listing on the left, the tweet was a nice way to promote my work, which is of course what the new tweets section is intended to do on Google News.
Poking around some more, I realized that not all coverage pages host a tweets section, which is interesting. As part of its constant search tuning, Google reserves the right to make features come and go, but it seems there is a reason for the inconsistency.
Google explained to Nieman Journalism Lab:
“The Tweets section appears when there’s a high level of activity on Twitter focused on that story and those tweets add diversity to the full coverage page. For example, we demote tweets that are on a broad topic not necessarily tied to the specific news story, that simply restate a headline and/or that link to a story already included on the full coverage page.“
Here’s a tweet collection I just snapped a screen of at 11 a.m. EDT April 19:
Funny how we get caught up thinking, talking and writing about Google’s efforts to socialize Google.com and yet we ignore these little social additions to Google News, one of the company’s more popular Web services.
I would expect over time that Google finds a way to integrate its own Google Social Search results and +1 buttons into Google News. Neither are popular enough now.
To that end, I wonder if we’ll ever see Facebook status updates related to the Google News topics, making the services more socially relevant. Google should try.