Move over Google, there’s a new
stalk search engine. Facebook’s search bar now allows users to search for more than just names of people. All of a person’s or company’s past statuses or interests can be searched now if its profile is public.
While Facebook users can change their privacy settings to disable being searched, often people are unaware that their profiles are public to begin with. This new update to the popular social networking site may not be too drastic or affect too much, but it can be heavily used by media, PR and advertisement companies.
People are free to edit their past Facebook posts now, but it would be tedious to go through all of one’s past posts. Companies can take advantage of this improved graph search to find out about their reputation among the average person, what is truly popular among people currently, the specific names of those that like their product or service, where their company/product is most popular and much more information that can be used for a company’s advantage.
Most online users are aware of the risks and intrusiveness of the virtual world, so this new update might not make much of a difference to these people. But some other people might feel intruded upon and be swayed against companies that use this searchable information.
Companies will have the greatest effect from this new Facebook Graph Search and many will without a doubt use it to draw in new customers, as well as improve their relationships with old customers.
Surveys and data research on the effectiveness of the search engine, as well as on public opinion on the update are sure to be comprised in the near future. Everyone will just have to wait and see what comes of it and to see how companies utilize this new research tool.
What do you think about Facebook’s new search engine? What will the effects be, if any? Let me know in the comments below!