Search through open search providers on the overview pane not working

My default browser is firefox. When I fire a google or a wikipedia
search from the activities pane, only the browser is launched with a
blank page. The search is not fired in the browser.I suspect that
firefox is not being launched with the search url. How can I correct this?

Version info
$ firefox --version
Mozilla Firefox 8.0
$ uname -a
Linux kempa-Notebook-PC 3.0.0-13-generic #22-Ubuntu SMP Wed Nov 2
13:25:36 UTC 2011 i686 i686 i386 GNU/Linux
$ gnome-shell --version
GNOME Shell 3.2.1


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