Facebooks Posts By Everyone Feature Exposes Dirty Secrets Online

SearchEngineLand‘s Dan Sullivan goes into detail on how Facebook’s “Posts By Everyone” feature works. It’s an interesting read, the beginning of which is below. Even more interesting is some of the stuff people expose online which I’ve outlined at the bottom of the article.

Searching Everyone’s Updates

You might have missed Facebook’s “Posts By Everyone” feature. It’s easy to overlook because search results aren’t shown by default. Consider this search for hungover:

Hungover Search On Facebook

When you start typing, Facebook suggests some options right within the search box. Pick any of those, and you go directly to a person, page or application, rather than overall search results. It’s easy to do this by hitting enter, so that you never get the search results at all.

If you go to the very bottom, there’s a “More Results” option as highlighted above. Click that, and a broader set of results appears: Hungover Search On Facebook

Notice on the left-hand side of the results, there are options to get results back from all these categories:

  • All Results
  • People
  • Pages
  • Groups
  • Applications
  • Events
  • Web Results
  • Posts By Friends
  • Posts By Everyone

In the search results above, you can see that “All Results” is highlighted, so I should be getting back results from all these categories. However, that’s not what happens. Instead, Facebook only brings back results from matching Pages, Posts By Friends and Web Results. That’s it.

(This, by the way, is just one example of why I often joke to people who warn that Facebook will beat Google in search that Facebook has enough problems searching Facebook itself, much less the entire web.)

Now look what happens if I drill in to the “Posts By Everyone” category:

Hungover Search On Facebook

Suddenly I see what Facebook failed to show me before, all the people on Facebook telling the world about their hangovers. You can read the rest of the post which details mobile sharing and how to control your privacy here.

Now for the dirty little secrets

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