Facebook had a mystery event lined up for January 16, 1130 pm IST. The mystery event had initiated a whole lot of debate as to what Facebook can announce in the event. The analysts were racking their brains and penning down blogs on whether Facebook will launch the Facebook phone, or will do something about the search. Some even went ahead and said, maybe it will delve more on News Feed and do away with the Facebook pages. Well all speculations were put to rest when Mark Zuckerberg spilled the beans and stated that it was the Graph search which they wanted to introduce.
This would enable people to search for terms like who loved dancing, which of their friends were in the company who knew driving, who loved so and so band, which of their friends have been to a say a specific Sushi restaurant and so on. What is evident is that Facebook is trying to read people’s minds and it knows that these are the queries which we have in our heads. We generally give preference to things, places our friends like or have experienced and so the searches will hover on this concept of human psychology.
Facebook says that the photos will come up in the search based on the queries and of course the number of likes and comments it received. Their search results will be unique which is understandable as my set of friends and what activities and preferences they have will be considerably different from your friend circle. Facebook even thinks this would bring people together who are not connected based on their likes and interests, pretty neat all this is.
Question remains how would this graph search concept fare in India? Will we do a search to find out which of our friends love movies, we will know that already, isn’t it? Which of our friends have visited a restaurant where we are just now, this can work but then we would possibly call someone and ask than do a Facebook search. Which of our friends know Bengali or know Yoga, that can help as well. But at the same time in India we are still at that stage of Facebook usage where we know our friends well and then connect with them on Facebook as well. How much we would use the graph search is something we need to wait and watch. How businesses will position themselves on this will also depend on the fact how actively people here use this feature.
We have some set steps for Facebook usage, we log in, check the notifications, check the pictures of our friends, post comments, likes, do status updates and chat and Facebook is over for us. In India Facebook is still considered as something which is for the young generation or something which is just for fun. When I say this am not talking about the people who are technologically advanced but the vast majority who have their accounts on Facebook and who are indeed the active users but they still consider Facebook as something which has to be done when you have free time. If you tell them you can get this important information from Facebook you would get a blank stare. So considering all these aspects what I see is how graph search will fare in Indian context is still a mystery. I hope Mark Zuckerberg organizes an event exclusively for India not because India needs graph search, we have our own network to be precise but yes Facebook may need Indians to do the searching vigorously. What do you think? 🙂