Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Is Facebook's New 'Graph Search' Built For Users or Marketers?

It sounds exciting.  Truth be told, I AM excited.  Facebook announced its new feature today, Graph Search, that will make searching the site much more intuitive.  
With Graph Search, instead of just typing in a friend's name and getting their profile, you'll be able to type in things like "Who do I know in New York", or "Friends in LA who like tennis".

Cool, right?  This will be super helpful and I can already think of a bunch of applications for it.  But the idea has been getting quite a bit of skeptical feedback.  

Is this feature made for us, the end users, or to help Facebook sell more targeted advertising?

And if I let my eagerness to try it out calm down a bit (which I will have to do anyway, because right now you have to get on a waiting list to even try the beta test) then I can see the skeptic's point. 

Does this really just make Facebook a better search engine of our likes, hobbies and statistics so that marketers can better reach us with their paid advertising?

Only time, and getting to use the new tool, will tell how well it works and how useful it is.  For now I will remain the ever-hopeful optimist.  Bring it on Graph Search!

What do you think about Facebook's announcement?  Are you Team Graph Search or Team Skeptic??

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