Lisa Barone writing in the Bruce Clay Blog was kind enough to mention a thread I started over at the Cre8asite Forums suggesting that the Ask.com Blog Search was filling a Google vacuum. She asked, “Who Has the Better Blog Search: Google or Ask?” Her answer ran as follows:
Personally, I think both blog searches need some work. If I had to commit myself to using one and only one, I’d probably go with Ask, but I’m not exactly jumping up and down on the couch over how fabulous they are.
Google is top dog when it comes to indexing speed but their index is chock full of spam. Ask takes a little longer to get things appearing in the index, but when the content is there, it’s relevant and better and smelling like roses.
She apparently still uses both. I used to be one of the strongest proponents for Google Blogsearch. However for some time I have been despairing of its quality. As she said it’s ‘chock full of spam’. In addition whatever algorithm it is using does not produce relevant blog posts for the searches I do.
It is not difficult to produce examples to show how broken it is. I wrote a blog post three days ago where relevant keywords were Customer Service, Bell, Rogers, Telus. Given the frustration that many feel over customer service from the telecoms, it’s a topic that is often discussed on the blogosphere. As of today, the Ask Blog Search has the blog post at #1 for that keyword search. Even IceRocket, another blogsearch engine that sometimes works at glacial speed, has the post at #3.
The surprise is that Google Blogsearch does not include the post in the top 100. That top 100 includes quite a slug of the spam posts that Lisa referred to. However the blog itself for a regular Google keyword Web search appears at #20 for these key words. Google has been boasting that it now includes blogs within the regular web search. That’s an improvement. Yet at the same time such posts no longer appear in the Google Blogsearch. That’s not at all logical.
I am not the only one to suggest that Google Blogsearch is broken. Philipp Lenssen raised this although for different reasons. It’s beginning to look as though it’s dropped off the Google corporate radar. That’s a pity. It used to be so impressive.