So Google recently made a change to their search results that rolls in content from your Google Plus account and your Picasa account. The idea, to hear Google tell it, is to make the search results more personalized and more useful to each user… to help them find more meaningful and engaging content. There’s only one problem: they left out the Videos search vertical.
Google Wants Search To Be Social, Except Video
Video is becoming more social all the time, with activity on Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, and other social properties driving the surge in video popularity.
So if the “new” Google results are all about engaging content… why leave out video? When I perform a search today for something like “Google,” I see some good Google Plus content to the right of the results, like this:
But if I search on the Videos vertical for something like “Apple,” there’s no Google Plus personalization in the video results whatsoever:
Am I the only one who thinks that’s weird? It’s the exact same feeling I had when Google Plus launched, but didn’t integrate my YouTube account (which would have been easy for them to do… and which they later did). They have added the personalization to the Images vertical… and the News vertical… but not video. It’s almost like someone forgot to remind the team that they own YouTube, and are, by definition, one of the biggest proponents of video in the world.
There is no more engaging and popular content variety than video, a lot of which is owed to social activity… so it’s an odd and fairly glaring oversight that the Videos search vertical has no Google Plus integration at all.
Let’s say that, as a search user, I want video. I love video–Google knows this, which is why they’ve been rolling video results into universal search for years. And who is more likely to serve me video I’m interested in… my close friends and personal contacts from Google Plus or some faceless algorithm? If personalization is good for standard results, it’s even better for video results–from the perspective of both the users and the people marketing those videos.
I’m sure there’s probably a reason why video was left out of the transition, but I’m not able to come up with one that makes any sense. Unless, as I wrote earlier, this new Google search is much less about wanting us to find engaging content and a lot more about their ongoing battles with Facebook & Twitter.