Bing, Facebook want you to ‘like’ your search results

Starting Monday, your Bing results will look different depending on whether you’re logged into Facebook.

According to a Bing blog post, users signed into Bing and Facebook will see search results that depend on the opinions of their Facebook friends as well as the crowd-sourced opinions of people using the social network’s “like” button across the Web. The new features amp up the company’s previous partnership for social search.

Microsoft’s search engine has also installed a universal “like” button in its toolbar to let you make recommendations on sites that don’t have the Facebook widget built in.

The two sites now have more layers of integration as well — a user looking for an item on Bing Shopping can post a list of items to his or her wall for advice, and some personal information about friends will appear as part of search results.

According to Stefan Weitz, director of Bing, only a person’s Facebook friends will see what they “like,” and “likes” will be seen only if a user has decided to share content with “everyone.”

“For expanded Facebook profile search, Bing may show Facebook profile data (name, photo, network, relationship to searcher), except when a profile is designated not to be shared with everyone, or where the Facebook user has asked that their profile information not appear in search engines at all,” Weitz said in an e-mailed statement. “If a Facebook user changes their mind at any time and opts out of showing up in search results, they will be removed from future Bing results, and any older Likes will be removed.”

With Google and Facebook competing to master the social side of search, Google introduced a feature similar to Facebook’s “like” button, the +1 button, as an experimental part of search in March.

Bing is also looking to take on the search giant. This partnership follows one with Research in Motion making Bing the default search engine on all BlackBerry devices.

(Post Co. Chairman and chief executive Donald E. Graham sits on Facebook’s board of directors, and the newspaper and many Post staffers use Facebook for marketing purposes.)

Related stories:

Google rolls out +1 in effort to socialize search

Bing brings Facebook-fueled search results

RIM, Microsoft team up for Bing on BlackBerry

Hayley Tsukayama covers consumer technology for The Washington Post.

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