Malleable Musings

October 10, 2009

Searching Sidewiki

Filed under: Sidewiki — Brendan @ 11:51 pm

I got around to hearing about, reading up on and having a quick look at Google Sidewiki last week. I actually quite like the idea of Sidewiki but as I’ve taken to using Chrome as my usual browser I’m unlikely to be using it that much. (Bizarrely the Google Toolbar with Sidewiki currently only works with Firefox and IE).

To illustrate what Sidewiki does lets consider Seth Godin. He’s recently just launched a service called Squidoo. As an aside this is well worth a look as to what a listening post can look like for a brand, link is for MailChimp. This is Seth’s post about launching the service. Strangely he normally doesn’t allow comments on his posts so what’s happened is that comments like this are appearing in Sidewiki.

I’ve seen some tools out there that claim to block Sidewiki although I haven’t investigated these properly yet.

Sidwiki may cause brands issues because it’s another place where conversation can happen, so it’s another place that needs to be monitored.

I mentioned on Friendfeed last week that we’ll need to see if and how Sidewiki takes off.  However this looks like it’s going to be difficult to monitor.

There is a Google Sidewiki API however I can’t see that it’s going to provide the one thing that brand owners with large websites are going to need which is notification of comments that could be written on a large number of pages across their website, e.g. look at this university press release and the comment that was made on the Sidewiki.

I therefore wondered how far I could get with searching for Sidewiki comments on Google.  The comments are of the form:

http://www.google.com/sidewiki/entry/userid/id/entrykey

but a quick search of site:http://www.google.com/sidewiki/entry/ on Google only reveals 2,190 results, which I think must be too small a number.  What’s more none of these seem to have been made in the past week.

Therefore it makes me wonder how accurate or useful more complex searches are e.g. search of “ac.uk” site:http://www.google.com/sidewiki/entry/

I think I need to think about this and explore it some more as I haven’t been able to produce a search that produces the 10+ comments shown on Seth Godin’s blog post (linked above).   Maybe what’s needed is to engage with the API.

Sidewiki is a secret hidden world but there are bound to be ramifications in all sorts of areas, SEO springs immediately to mind.  Sidewiki is definitely a technology I’ll be watching.

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2 Comments »

  1. Someone has figured the API out and is selling commercial software to surface comments – http://www.updatepatrol.com/monitor-sidewiki-comments-and-sidewiki-alerts.html However see the restriction: currently Google only expose the comments that are voted as useful by readers through their APIs. It is expected that they will fix this soon.

    Comment by Brendan — October 23, 2009 @ 7:59 pm

  2. […] Filed under: Sidewiki, Yahoo Pipes — Brendan @ 12:31 am Having written about searching Sidewiki a couple of weeks ago, I’ve been  reading a bit more about it and I’ve also been been […]

    Pingback by More on Sidewiki « Malleable Musings — October 26, 2009 @ 12:31 am


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