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January 16, 2013

“A hugely powerful way to be creepy on Facebook”

That is my favorite quote about Facebook Search so far. Although, with the amount of attention the topic has been getting, I’m sure it will be replaced shortly by something even wittier. Despite not even being available to the general public, Facebook Search has got the blogosphere atwitter (social media puntastic!)

If you want a good laugh, as well as a succinct explanation of Facebook’s upcoming new feature, you really should check out Kyle Wagner’s article on Gizmodo. Kyle also shares some tips about how Facebook Search will eventually be able to help you find a cat-loving lady in your area! (For recruiting, not dating, obviously).

I was going to do a post about leadership, but the leaders I respect were all posting about Facebook Search. Some leader I am. Okay, a few of them are posting about this adorable stock market predicting kitty genius, but I’m totally above posting links like that. We also had to tackle Facebook Graph Search, because of how much it  will influence Facebook recruiting.

Mark Zuckerberg even brought up Facebook Graph Search and its recruiting power. When explaining how it worked to Wired reporter Steven Levy, he said:

“Let’s say we’re trying to find engineers at Google who are friends of engineers at Facebook.” He typed in the query and found, not surprisingly, that there were lots of people who met those criteria.

Next, let’s look to Jim Stroud, as his article is the best I’ve read so far about how Facebook Search will apply to recruiting. Jim points to its long tail (yeah, I didn’t know either !) and intuitive search format as useful features for sourcing candidates. Jim’s article is not all rainbows and kittens — he also emphasizes that it probably won’t be useful right away, since many users don’t fill out their “About” page, nor do they “Like” and “Comment” as much as would be optimal for a recruitment-based search. Hopefully he’ll get a chance to try out Social Graph for himself soon and give us a more detailed review.

Now, just in case you were wondering where the whole Graph part of Facebook Search is coming from, here’s a pretty great description of what Facebook’s Social Graph is all about. (With diagrams, yay!!) It differs from a Google search, because Facebook knows all your juicy social data. This makes it far more powerful, and yes, more creepy.

Brittany Darwell explains, in an article for Inside Facebook, just how useful this aspect of Graph Search will be for marketers. She includes some great examples. My favorite being “what are the musical preferences of women living in Chicago who like Obama?” Answer : “Monica”. Obviously. And I miss the 90s.

Graph Search has already taught me so much, and I can’t wait to try it out for myself, or at least read about what other people’s experiences with it are, whilst I writhe with jealousy!