World Cup 2022: Australia loses out to Qatar
Given FIFA's penchant for bringing the World Cup to less traditional footballing nations, fans here in Australia were hoping the 2022 tournament might be coming down under. Alas, while FIFA did indeed decide to break new ground, it was Qatar, the gas-rich Middle Eastern state, that won the vote.
Heartbreak for those Aussie football fans who stayed up until the early hours to hear the decision was shared by the English delegation. They were soundly beaten by Russia in their bid to host the 2018 tournament, despite rolling out prime minister David Cameron, heir to the throne Prince William and the world's most famous footballer, David Beckham.
But while the news will be dominated by the joy and disappointment, Beckham's latest hairdo and Qatar's ambitious plans to build air-conditioned stadia for 2022 and ship them all to Africa afterwards, we're more interested in the search angle.
As with many newsworthy topics, the World Cup announcement has prompted Google to display news and instant results in its universal search. Running a search for "World Cup" or "World Cup bid" returns news stories at the top of page one. It is also pointing to results from Twitter, Facebook and MySpace.
These news stories and social media updates top hundreds of millions of pages of content, making them hugely valuable. These results are also more accessible, especially for smaller sites, highlighting the value of publishing original, relevant content.
The World Cup announcement will not have been universally relevant, but there are plenty of newsworthy stories every day that can become valuable sources of traffic for virtually any website. These stories can bring in traffic, improve dwell time and attract links from third parties.