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Google, Twitter Partner Once Again to Warn of Disasters

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Google (GOOG - Get Report) GOOG and Twitter (TWTR - Get Report) TWTR haven't had the best working relationship in the past few years. However, the two companies are joining forces again to provide real-time, first-person alerts from the scene of natural disasters.

This week, Google has begun adding pertinent social media reports to its Public Alerts on Google+ and will also include them Google Now, Google Maps and Google Search feeds.

Google shares were up 0.34% to $555.77, while Twitter shares were gaining 0.91% to $34.20 in pre-market trading in New York.

The idea is to add as much information as possible from as many sources as possible. The systems will be able to spread up-to-the-minute reports concerning weather events, official warnings, possible evacuations, rescue efforts, school closings coming from people close to the disaster.

Google says of the added social media feature, "Many people on the front lines of a disaster are sharing relevant information through social media. We want to help make this content easier to find, and available alongside information from official sources."

Public Alerts depends on official sources such as the National Weather Service to help disperse information about hurricanes, tornadoes, wind storms, fires, earthquakes, volcanoes and other major disasters all around the world.

At this point, the Crisis Response service is only available in English-speaking regions and only for their Public Alert system and that they're working on adding "new kinds of social content to other products in the future.

The integration of Twitter postings is the first sign of a possible easing of tensions between the two companies. Back in 2011, Google announced that it's two-year old relationship with Twitter had expired and would not be renewed. For two years, Google had been providing a special "Realtime" search service for tweets which was abruptly ended. At the time no official reason was given for the break-up, but there was plenty of speculation that Twitter had not been happy about the just-launched Google+ service.

Today's announcement mentions no additional partnerships between the two companies.

-- Written by Gary Krakow in New York.

To submit a news tip, send an email to

Gary Krakow is TheStreet's Senior Technology Correspondent.

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