Facebook’s new Graph Search

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Facebook has a new beta service rolling out called Graph Search. Graph Search allows you to search across different friends’ timelines without having to go to each and every profile to find out what it is you’re looking for such as a specific place or thing.

With Graph Search you would enter a question such as “Who are my friends that live in San Francisco?” and Graph Search will scan all of your Facebook friend’s pages and display the relevant information about friends who live in San Francisco.

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It can give you even more precise information. An article in the Business Insider uses the example that if you wanted to plan a big movie night among friends you could search for something like “friends who like Star Wars and Harry Potter”.

And for some it might feel like this is only going to increase Facebook stalking,  and you might be right. You can type in something as detailed as “friends who are single men in New York City” and further refine that search to meet even more of your requirements. It doesn’t even stop there. In a recent article published by Casey Johnson she further explains: “Facebook noted that the search could apply not only to current friends, but to people a user might have met in real life and “[wants] to meet them on Facebook.” For instance, if a user met at friend of a friend who mentioned he went to Kenyon but didn’t catch his last name, the query “People named Andrew who are friends with Jacques and went to Kenyon” would locate him” (if his privacy settings allow him to be searchable).

Graph Search is Facebook’s way of searching for objects on the internet by how they are mapped out in likes, not links. Metadata and connections are also factored in.

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Graph is privacy aware too, every piece of content has its own audience, most content is not public and you can only search for content that has been shared with you.

Bing search results are integrated into your Graph Search as well. As for the slowness of this ability rolling out into full swing, Zuckerberg told Business Insider that “every piece of content on Facebook has its own audience, making graph search very challenging to build.”

ABC News describes Graph Search as giving you the ability to “search and discover more about your friends and other information that’s been put on the world’s largest social site”.

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Graph Search will only be available to a limited set of US users at first, to be part of the wait list sign up here:  Waiting List

Here is a page that answers many questions you might have about Graph Search such as: does Graph Search change any of you current privacy settings, how do I control what tags show up about you, how do you search, what you can search for, and what Graph Search is useful for.  Graph Search Questions

–Pictures from Business Insider article: Facebook Announces New Graph Search

–Article written by Ashley Helms, Social Media Specialist for My IT People

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