Scott Monty

Scott Monty

NASA Goddard Space Flight - in search of...

Recently, my friend C.C. was preparing to head to London on business and he lamented, "Baffles my brain that Facebook still won't let you search your friends by city."

It's not an uncommon complaint, but not many people realize that there is a function built into Facebook that allows you to do that.

Facebook Search

You've probably seen the search bar at the top of Facebook. On desktop it looks like this:

And on mobile it looks like this:

When you type into that bar, you'll see suggested results, such as friends' names, locations, or Pages that you like. In mobile, you'll also see Trending topics beneath the bar.

But did you know that Facebook Search has a variety of search options available to you? For example, you can search for for people, posts, photos, places, Pages, Groups, apps and events.

And when you're looking for friends in a particular geography, just search for "friends who live in" and include the name of the country, city or whatever geographic parameter makes sense for you.

You can also search by likes, interests, times and other categories. From there, you can begin grouping your friends into lists. If you haven't looked at your lists lately, just go to the left sidebar on Facebook and scroll down until you see Friends - or simply go to On any Profile that you visit, you can click on the "Friends" button at the top and see how you're connected with that person, and then add them to whatever list makes sense to you. You can use existing categories or create your own.

Hint: if you want to see more updates that someone posts, put them into the "Close Friends" list that Facebook provides.

The lists that Facebook provides by default include the networks or companies that people have put into their Profiles. But wouldn't it be great if Facebook automatically included people into geographical lists, to make it easier to find people as we travel, or to invite them to events?

How have you used Facebook Search to your advantage?

Image credit: NASA Goddard Space Flight Center


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