Chief executives from Yahoo told an FT blogger this afternoon they will jump into “social search” this year.
Their product rollout looks like this:
In the next few weeks: they will include updates from members of your address book when they comment on stories within the Yahoo network
Q2-Q3: Facebook activity streams, based on friendship will be included in a sort of Facebook powered of social circle results. Eventually Twitter data will be added. Given that Facebook and Yahoo are essentially partners, they left no comment on whether they will be introducing Facebook’s universal “Like” button or Twitter’s @anywhere features.
However don’t hold your breath on this update. The FT blogger, Joseph Menn, said Yahoo has been talking about social search for the last 6 years, long before Facebook. Large brands making social networks out of their email services risk a severe privacy backlash and is not a popular tactic.
We remain unconvinced that such an integration will deliver any value and think that they are just jumping on the hype bandwagon surrounding the Facebook F8 and Twitter Chirp conferences. If there are going to build anything social into email, we think they should build something much more useful, like the 3D Mailbox. :)