Yahoo Search Gets Social

Yahoo released a limited beta of My Web 2.0, a search personalization play that uses elements of social media to improve search results.

The latest beta combines elements of tagging and wikis, and lets users change the titles of Web pages, annotate them and add descriptive tags.

“People and trust networks are now an additional source of authority for social search engines,” the Yahoo search team wrote on its corporate blog. “In the same way that blogs and RSS are empowering individuals to participate in publishing, individuals and communities can now participate in search, using tools like My Web 2.0 that let them define what is valuable to them and their community.”

My Web 1.0, released in April, lets those signed in with a Yahoo account save pages to a “personal Web,” rate pages and block them from ever appearing again in search results.

The new version extends these abilities to a trusted community. Users first must set up their communities, or social networks, by inviting others to join. They can use e-mail or import contacts from the Yahoo Address Book, Messenger buddy list or Yahoo 360 community.

Anyone within the community can influence search relevance in several ways. While My Web 1.0 lets users save pages into folders, 2.0 lets them simply tag pages with one or more words that describe the page content. Pages previously saved in 1.0 folders will be tagged with the folder name, and users can import bookmarks, as well.

Users can publish their saved pages for public access or share them only with people in the network.

Search for My Web 2.0 users is powered by a separate search technology, which Yahoo calls “MyRank.”

“MyRank leverages all the advances in algorithmic search and combines these advances with a very simple idea — your definition of a ‘better answer’ may be very different than somebody else’s definition. The MyRank technology powering My Web 2.0 enables you to tap into the knowledge of the people you know, and leverage this knowledge to find better answers that are more relevant to you,” the blog said.

The company said it plans to extend it to other Yahoo applications.

The announcement follows Google’s beta launch of Personalized Search.

Please enter your content here.

News Around the Web