Facebook made a big deal out of Graph Search. It was going to change Facebook! It was going to make everything more social! And that’s a great idea. Too bad that’s not what Graph Search does, at all, in any way, shape, or form.
Here’s the main problem with Graph Search. Say I want to know what my friends think of, say, Pacific Rim. So, it being a search engine, you type in “Pacific Rim” and get… the official Facebook page for the movie, the official page for R.I.P.D., a fan page, a fan page for an unrelated band, and options to find all pages, places, and search the Web for Pacific Rim. At the very bottom, in teeny type is a “show all results” page. If you click that, and then scroll past all the paid results, then and only then do you find what your friends are saying about Pacific Rim.
This is provided you can get past every single group, person on Facebook, and product that incorporates the words of your search. If you’ve got a title made of common words like The Last Of Us, you’ll be scrolling past every crappy fan page and spam attempt and you may not find comments from your friends at all.
If this sounds familiar, that’s because Facebook’s old search engine did the exact same thing, except that at least let you stay on a page to use it. As far as we can tell, the only difference here is that if you misspell something, Graph Search will immediately assume you want to use Facebook to search the web, because it’s so, so hard to Google something.
In short, Facebook took something that genuinely could have improved their service and ruined it by selling ads. It’s fairly clear paid results sit at the top. Perhaps Facebook will fix the problem, but frankly, it seems unlikely. Ah well, at least we have hashtags.
I want more like this!
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