Google starts indexing Facebook comments, AJAX/JavaScript content

Summary:Google has started indexing AJAX and JavaScript content. This includes, for example, the Facebook Comments Box many sites use to power their commenting system.

Google has started indexing Facebook comments posted on third-party websites. In other words, if you use the Facebook Comment Box to power the commenting system for your website's content, as many news websites and blogs do, your readers' content could be affecting your Google PageRank.

Users' comments posted via services like Disqus, Intense Debate, or the Facebook Comments Box, normally aren't picked up by search engines. That changed recently, however, as Google recently started indexing comments, meaning that content now shows up in Google searches.

The tidbit was first spotted by Digital Inspiration. Matt Cutts, the head of Google's Webspam team, confirmed the news on Twitter: "Googlebot keeps getting smarter. Now has the ability to execute AJAX/JS to index some dynamic comments."

GoogleBot, the company's search spider, has apparently learned to read comments that are dynamically loaded in AJAX or JavaScript. This also means Google is getting better at seeing content being loaded in your own custom AJAX and/or JavaScript code.

Although Facebook and Google may not be best friends, this is actually good news for the social networking giant. Those who have been avoiding using the Facebook Comments Box because of the SEO factor may reconsider their decision now.

See also:

Topics: Browser, Apps, Google, Open Source, Social Enterprise, Software Development

About

Emil is a freelance journalist writing for CNET and ZDNet. Over the years, he has covered the tech industry for multiple publications, including Ars Technica, Neowin, and TechSpot.

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