Facebook is expanding the scope of its Graph Search tool so that it now will index posts and status updates. In doing so, users can search for not only friends who Like “Breaking Bad” or have photos of the show, but also specific posts about it, along with photo captions, check-ins, and comments. This new feature is slowly being released and eventually will be available to all Graph Search users.
Nearly 10 months ago, company CEO Mark Zuckerberg introduced the world to Graph Search, a tool that allowed people to sift through their social graph to find information. It was Facebook’s search engine, but unfortunately was limited in what it could display: your friends list, photos, restaurants nearby, games, and music. Parsing through 1 trillion posts proved to be a difficult challenge for the social networking company, although it has been on the company’s road map since the beginning.
F**k it, we'll do it live!
Our biggest ever edition of TNW Conference is fast approaching! Join 10,000 tech leaders this May in Amsterdam.
But what about comments under each post? Facebook tells us that you cannot “explicitly search for ‘comments by my friends'” right now. However, when you search for “posts commented on by my friends”, Graph Search will display those results.
The addition of indexing posts and status updates will go a long way to help support the social network’s implementation of hashtag support. Until now, there was no way to catalog what people are saying as it relates to something like #GoodbyeBreakingBad, which Twitter has an easy time of analyzing. Also, let’s not forget that it will do well to bolster the Trending Topics feature that it was reported to be testing last month.
As Facebook begins to move more into the social TV space by providing media networks access to data on what people are chatting, the contextual search capabilities could certainly make things easier to curate and digest what people are saying about select shows, especially among friends.
To find out whether you’re one of the first few to get access to this more detailed-oriented search engine, go to the Graph Search bar at the top of Facebook. If you’ve been granted access, you’ll see a notification to help get you started:
It’s important to note that Graph Search is only available to everyone who is using Facebook in US English.
Photo credit: Josh Edelson/AFP/Getty Images