Google launches Sidewiki: comment on any webpage

Thu 24 September 2009 09:19, Bas van den Beld

Google is getting more social every day. The launch of Sidewiki yesterday means Google is taking another big step towards social search. With Sidewiki you can add helpful information on a website next to the site itself. And not just that, you can also see what others wrote about the site.

The feature is comparable with the comments you can add to a found post in Google Reader. Only in this case its not just the comments of your contacts you will see, it's everybody's comments.

Right away the question arises: won't that mean a lot of spam next to a popular webpage? No, says Google:

"In developing Sidewiki, we wanted to make sure that you'll see the most relevant entries first. We worked hard from the beginning to figure out which ones should appear on top and how to best order them. So instead of displaying the most recent entries first, we rank Sidewiki entries using an algorithm that promotes the most useful, high-quality entries."

What is interesting is that Sidewiki is apparently real time. This means you will see any comment made right away. With Google Wave just around the corner in time we will probably be able to see the commenter type.


Google did a little bit more than 'just' add comments to the side of websites. Entries made will not only be visible on the site you commented on, but also on any website which has the same quote in it. So a comment next to a quote from Google, like the one above, can appear on other sites which use the same quote.

Sidewiki is launched now and can be used right away. Page owners even have the option to write a special entry that will remain on top of all the entries.

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