Twitter Decides To Play Nice With Search Engines

Remember when tweets used to come up in search results on Google?

And then they suddenly didn’t and there was a silly bit of back and forth finger-pointing between the two platforms?

Well, it seems Twitter has reconsidered and quietly re-allowed search engines the ability to search public tweets and hashtags.

Search Engine Land reports that “Twitter recently updated its robots.txt file . . . [and this] opens up millions of pages to being crawled . . . [by] Google, Bing, Yahoo, Yandex and other bots.” And Twitter confirmed the change saying it should “help people find popular and helpful Twitter pages.” Hmm. And this ability wouldn’t have been helpful before?

Regardless, Search Engine Land (rightly) wonders if search engines will be taking Twitter up on this offer:

Google has been adamant over the years that it doesn’t want to show search results pages in its own search results. There’s a specific webmaster guideline that tells webmasters not to do what Twitter is doing:

Use robots.txt to prevent crawling of search results pages or other auto-generated pages that don’t add much value for users coming from search engines.

But we already know Google has a grudge. They won’t ALL boycott Twitter’s search results – and as soon as one starts sharing it, they all will, won’t they?

It really was pretty handy to have tweets come up in search results before and I know I’ve missed it – have you? Here’s hoping the respective search engines don’t take their ball and go home!

(Little girl image from Shutterstock)