Facebook has recently launched its latest feature, called Graph Search. With it, you can now easily search for people based on location, hobbies, and other common personal information. However, its true power comes from the fact that it can also search for people based on what they “Like” on Facebook. While it has the potential to find you the love of your life or a perfect new friend, it could also mean your utter downfall once someone finds out that you like some pretty…questionable things.
Graph Search can inadvertently reveal some pretty embarrassing stuff about yourself depending on what you’ve liked on Facebook in the past. If you had liked a page called “farting in elevators” in the past just because it amused you at the time, then congratulations because you will be listed as a “person who likes farting in elevators”. The possibilities are quite endless, with several websites, such as this one, listing their favorite ideas for the Graph Search Engine.
If you thought that was embarrassing , then I’m sorry to say that that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Graph Search may also cause people to think that you are a racist, a sexist, an exhibitionist, and generally just a disgusting person by the things that you’ve just mindlessly liked in the past. Do you know exactly what pages you’ve liked on Facebook? Have you checked if you’ve liked pages with titles such as “High School Girls”, “Fart Jokes”, or “Weed”? How would you feel when you come up as a result when someone searches for “men who like high school girls” or “women who like weed”? Again, the possibilities are endless.
All of these had even inspired a hashtag on Twitter, #FacebookSearchIdeas. Graph Search skeptics flooded Twitter with outrageous search ideas such as “people who like punching old people”, to potentially damaging searches such as “pictures of people giving my boss the finger behind his back”. The guys at Twitter may think it’s amusing but if you stop and think for awhile, the potential power at the disposal of Graph Search is actually pretty scary.
It looks like each one of us needs to do a massive cleanup of our Facebook profiles. Now that our Facebook persona is easily searchable, we have to be extra vigilant in the things that we like or comment on in Facebook. All of us must think before we click “Like”!