Feeds

Microsoft's Bing grabs hold of Zuckerberg's firehose

Brings Facebook to party... bitch

The essential guide to IT transformation

Microsoft has announced yet more tweaks to Bing, this time adding a new "social" site to its search engine.

The company already turned on the "firehose" for Twitter back in October last year.

Bing.com/social extends on that by offering what Redmond described as "the first search experience integrating the full Facebook firehose with non-pages content".

Twitter's real time estate will also be slotted into the social site, said Microsoft.

Bing's senior veep Yusuf Mehdi announced the near-real time search addition at the SMX Advanced event yesterday.

Switching on the Facebook firehose will allow Bing to grab status updates and shared links from the Mark Zuckerberg-run site's "fan pages".

All of which will be pleasing to the boydroid, who recently faced a storm of protest over changes to Facebook, after it was made more of a data goldmine for advertisers.

It's unclear how much Microsoft will be paying for the privilege of switching on Facebook's stream of Web2.0rhea. The software maker has of course already sunk $240m into Zuckerberg's stalker empire, which gave Steve Ballmer's firm a mere 1.6 per cent of preferred Facebook stock.

But presumably that deal ought to bring the price down a tad. Currently, sites like Google, Bing, and Yahoo! are paying untold amounts for direct access to the Twitter firehose.

"In addition to Tweets, we also search through Facebook fan page updates and surface matching results. For example, a search for 'NBA Finals' will return fan-page content from Facebook, including posts from a local TV station," explained Microsoft's Lawrence Kim in a blog post.

The company was keen to be seen to be doing the right thing by pointing out that non-fan pages will only show popular shared links from Facebook users in the aggregate form via Bing.

Only those status updates that people have foolishly set to be viewed by "everyone" will be farmed out to Microsoft's search engine.

"No names or photos, or even the text in the update associated with the link are published - just the link in aggregate."

Microsoft is clearly mindful of both Google and Facebook's recent privacy howlers, and has thereby taken a softly-softly approach with its Bing social slab. Kim did hint that the vendor is working on more features for its "social vertical", however, which could yet see the search engine become a more aggressive data farmer in the spirit of Mountain View. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Microsoft boots 1,500 dodgy apps from the Windows Store
DEVELOPERS! DEVELOPERS! DEVELOPERS! Naughty, misleading developers!
Apple promises to lift Curse of the Drained iPhone 5 Battery
Have you tried turning it off and...? Never mind, here's a replacement
Mozilla's 'Tiles' ads debut in new Firefox nightlies
You can try turning them off and on again
Linux turns 23 and Linus Torvalds celebrates as only he can
No, not with swearing, but by controlling the release cycle
Scratched PC-dispatch patch patched, hatched in batch rematch
Windows security update fixed after triggering blue screens (and screams) of death
This is how I set about making a fortune with my own startup
Would you leave your well-paid job to chase your dream?
prev story

Whitepapers

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Backing up Big Data
Solving backup challenges and “protect everything from everywhere,” as we move into the era of big data management and the adoption of BYOD.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?