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Facebook Graph Search (NEW): Facebook Just Got More Filipino

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When a Filipino needs to find an electrician, a doctor, someone to do their taxes, or someone to fix their car, they typically do not turn to Google first. They ask their friends: do you know anyone? We Filipinos feel more comfortable with a personal recommendation, because we trust friends more than we trust Google. Now Facebook has a search feature that allows one to search for people, places, and pages that our friends have liked. Imagine being able to poll EVERY friend on your friends list as to which doctor they like, all at the same time, without actually having to ask them. And imagine being able to see how many of your friends like a number of doctors. You can choose the one that has the most likes from your friends, or the one that is liked by the right friends: the ones whose opinions you trust the most.

Of course, this will depend on those electricians, doctors, accountants, and mechanics 1) having a presence on Facebook, and 2) a number of your friends actually liking their pages. You may be thinking “How many of my friends actually have liked their doctor on Facebook?” and that’s a valid question. Facebook is hoping the promise of what Facebook Graph Search can provide will help encourage people to like more things that they actually do like. “There are now new reasons to make these connections,” says Tom Stocky, director of product management at Facebook. “We’re hoping the existence of [this new search feature] will encourage it.”

The new search feature, called Facebook Graph Search (the “graph” being all the people, places, photos, pages, links, and other objects on Facebook, and the web of connections between them all), allows you to search for:

  • Pictures posted by friends living in a particular city.
  • Businesses owned by graduates of a particular university.
  • Friends who are friends with people that work for a particular company, for example all your friends who are friends with people who work for Microsoft Philippines.
  • Friends who are friends with people of a certain occupation (Does anybody know a plumber?)
  • Movies, restaurants, books, or brands/products your friends like.
  • All the photos you liked in 2007.
  • All the TV shows that college students like, or software engineers, or people in their 30’s.

Facebook’s Third View: Now in Beta

Facebook sees Facebook Graph Search as a new, third way that people will view Facebook. We have our timeline view to see what’s happening with us, our newsfeed view to see what’s happening with others, and now a search view, to see what we’re looking for. The new service will be Facebook’s first ever beta product, requiring a waitlist. Over the coming months, it will slowly become more available to those communicating in English and eventually to those communicating in other languages.

Now that Facebook is becoming more Filipino in how it allows people to search for information, it will be interesting to see if the Philippines, commonly known as the social media capital of the world, adopts Facebook Graph Search with the same zeal and fervor as it adopted Facebook itself. We’ll be able to use Facebook Graph Search to tell, as soon as we get into the beta.

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