(NEWS CENTER) - There has been a very misleading status message floating around Facebook for a number of weeks about graph search, and it's false.
Here is a rough idea of what the message/status (that's being shared) says:
"JUST SO EVERYONE ON MY FRIENDS LIST KNOWS THAT I COMPLETED THIS AND I AM DONE!!!
FACEBOOK HAS CHANGED THEIR PRIVACY SETTINGS ONCE MORE!!! DUE TO THE NEW "GRAPH APP" ANYONE ON FACEBOOK (INCLUDING OTHER COUNTRIES) CAN SEE YOUR PICTURES, LIKES, AND COMMENTS. The next 2 weeks I will be posting this, and please once you have done it please post DONE!
Those of you who do not keep my information from going out to the public, I will have to DELETE YOU! I want to stay PRIVATELY connected with you. I post shots of my family that I don't want strangers to have access to!!! This happens when our friends click "like" or "comment"... automatically, their friends would see our posts too. Unfortunately, we cannot change this setting by ourselves because Facebook has configured it that way. PLEASE place your mouse over my name above (DO NOT CLICK), a window will appear, now move the mouse on "FRIENDS" (also without clicking), then down to "Settings", click here and a list will appear. REMOVE the CHECK on "LIFE EVENTS" and "COMMENTS & LIKES". By doing this, my activity among my friends and family will no longer become public. Now, copy and paste this on your wall. Once I see this posted on your page, I will do the same."
The bottom line is no, this will not do what it claims to do. What it WILL do is remove that particular friend out of your news feed. We use the settings, as described above, when we want to hide someone, or hide their posts.
Any time you see a post that says "now copy and paste this on your wall" the majority of the time it is not legit. So if you see this going around tell your friends to stop sharing it.
Only you can control what is public or private. There is a difference between public, friends, or friends of friends settings.
Facebook has made the privacy settings very clear, and the tool "activity log" helps you see what's public or not. You can even control past posts with activity log.
Anything you post as public, anyone (and I mean anyone) can see it. If you post something to friends, then only your friends can see it. However, if your friends settings are set to "friends of friends" then -- the people they are friends with -- could possibly see or comment on your post.
So really, what the above message should say is: friends don't let friends have their settings to "friends of friends." Always keep your settings to "friends only" -- this keeps you the safest.
What does friends of friends mean?
Graph search looks through any information that YOU, the user, have made public (that information includes pages you've liked).
So if I use graph search to look for a restaurant and five of my friends have liked a certain place on Facebook, but they've locked up their privacy settings, I will still see that they've "liked" that restaurant. That is the point of graph search. Even if I have followed the instructions from the very misleading post above, it's not going to protect everything from graph search.
Graph search is really there as a marketing tool for Facebook and those who use Facebook for marketing. While there are benefits to the users, there are more for the marketer.
Understanding Graph Search better: