Something new is up at Facebook. On Tuesday, the company announced that it has come up with a new search tool called “graph search” that will now be available to a few thousand select Facebook members and will allow them to to search their social network for names, photos, places and other things. For example, if you want to search for a pizza restaurant in Times Square it will show which of your friends have “liked” or have checked into such places. Eventually, this tool will be rolled out to all Facebook users.
“Graph search is a completely new way to get information on Facebook,” Mr. Zuckerberg told reporters. Although, Zuckerberg didn’t say so, the plan is likely to help Facebook compete with other companies that dominate the search space, such as Google, LinkedIn and Amazon. But rather than send a Facebook user to other sites, the idea with “graph search” is to keep the search inside Facebook itself. Zuckerberg says that Facebook will protect the privacy of its users and that posts and photos will only be found if a user wants them to be found.