Bing, Microsoft’s answer to Google, recently partnered with Facebook to make online search more social. As Bing stated in a blog post, this new feature enables users to include “your Facebook friends into your search experience.” The Bing post describes the frequency with which we ask our friends for advice on things that we would probably also look up online. With the new “Liked Results” feature, users are now able to look up hotels in a certain city as well as search whether any of their friends on Facebook “liked” a particular restaurant. This feature is supposed to give users more accurate and relevant search results, as well as further trust in these results because they are backed by their friends’ opinions. Another feature is the “Profile Search.” Over 4% of searches are carried out to find a specific person online but, according to Bing’s blog, it’s hard to always find the right person directly. The Bing and Facebook collaboration claims to make it easier to narrow down your search and find the correct person.
What does it mean for parents and kids? Well, for one, the margin for screwing up on the social web is getting smaller. Yes, search results are becoming more relevant and meaningful – but only because the content your kid is posting is becoming more searchable. That means eventually those status updates or photos you think are buried deep in your kid’s profile can easily be recalled through search. And that means that if your kid posts something regrettable on their profile – the chances of somebody else seeing it has vastly increased.
Again, parents need to have a conversation with their kids on the importance of reputation and the dangers of over-sharing. Parents should scour their children’s profiles now to see if there is any content that should not be on their profiles. SocialShield’s Alerts Engine™ can also notify parents when anything on their kids’ networks is inappropriate – so that parents can take timely action where and when needed.
How do you feel about social search? Is this kind of search and social optimization moving too fast?