Microsoft Gets Social from BusinessWeek has news that Microsoft may be
buying or partnering with Eurekster to
bring social search features to its MSN Window Live Search service. An question
answering service is also coming.
What’s MSN Windows Live Search, by the way? Since Microsoft
doesn’t seem to know if we’re supposed to use
Windows Live Search (launched
last month) or MSN Search (launched
in 1998), MSN Windows Live Search is my name for covering both bases at once.
Personally, I like how it preserves the MSN brand while adding yet another word
to the search service’s name. It rolls off the tongue. I’m going to go
MSNWindowsLiveSearch someone or something right now.
BusinessWeek confuses the forthcoming Q&A tool with social search. Those are
two completely different types of search features/services, of which Q&A is the
least important. In fact, it just reeks of another "me too" move that’s not
going to budge MSN Windows Live Search’s usage among searchers.
I mean, LookSmart Live never took off after being
in 1999. Neither
did Ask’s Answer Point, which came out in 2000.
Google Answers, which was
in 2002 the same week Answer Point closed only
0.01 percent of Google visits in November.
Yahoo Answers was
in December, so perhaps it will grow. But it probably won’t.
but it’s hardly had the growth and notice of some social sites like YouTube.
Real social/personalized search coming to MSNWLS is much more important,
because it really is something I expect will take us into that next generational
jump. Eurekster certainly has plenty of experience in the space, having ushered
in the current round of social search attention since it
back in 2004.
Here are some key stories from me on social and personalized search, if you
really want to come up to speed on changes:
Hit Debuts Personalized Search
Launches Personalized Social Search
Search Personalization: A Marketer’s Perspective
Relaunches Personal Search – This Time, It Really Is Personal
- Yahoo My
Web: An eBay For Knowledge
FYI, this will be MSN’s second time around with a social search feature. In
carried Direct Hit results, which was a rudimentary form of social search
based on tracking aggregate clicks. Direct Hit results were dropped sometime