Social searching

By Anne Collier

Even search is getting social. People have always polled their friends for recommendations. Then there were Web sites that aggregated members’ reviews (Amazon for books, TripAdvisor for hotels, Yelp for restaurants). But more and more the social Web is bringing search and review right to our own social circles, the New York Times reports. It gives three examples right off the bat: Amazon now allowing customers to their Facebook accounts so it “can display their friends’ favorite books, films and other products”; “TunerFish, a start-up owned by Comcast,” provides a social sort of “TV Guide” showing shows and films users’ friends are watching in realtime (while they’re watching them!); and “Loopt, a location-focused social network with 3.4 million registered users, recently began showing them which of their friends liked a particular restaurant” (uh oh, move over Yelp!). What fueling all this? The Times calls it “the friend trend.”

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