Google to index Facebook comments
Search engine Google now indexes public comments made on websites that use Facebook, Disqus and other add-ons.
The move means that all comments on any publicly visible website could show up in Google search results. Previously, search engines were unable to read comments because Facebook, Disqus and Intense Debate used programming that was not easy to read automatically.
This meant that comments could play any part in a website’s search ranking. Now, however, the web tools that Google uses to trawl the web and index content are able to read comments that have been made using Facebook’s Connect add-in for other websites, as well as other equivalent services.
Some website owners have declined to use add-ons for comments that do not help their search rankings, but as Facebook has become a more popular tool for interaction outside Facebook.com itself, Google has effectively been ignoring a growing part of the web.
The update means links featured in comments will also enhance websites’ standing.
Although comments are not likely to immediately appear high up search results, specific searches for them will bring them up.
The move also means that posts and conversations in comment threads will be easier to find. Search queries using terms such as “commenter name” will now bring up comments made across the web by named individuals.