I’m dying of curiosity to find out which of my Facebook friends are fans of Mitt Romney and which are fans of Barack Obama. Is there any way to figure that out on Facebook?
Well, hold on a sec. We don’t want to talk about death and Facebook in the same sentence, do we? Oh, wait, I just did.
Seriously, are you sure you want to know the political stance of your friends and colleagues, your “friends” on Facebook? If you’re a rabid Obama supporter, for example, are you going to unfriend everyone who is a supporter of Mitt Romney as the next potential President of the United States? Or vice-versa?
On the other hand, the approach I’ll show you turns out to work for anything, including even just seeing which of your friends are also friends of your ex-boyfriend, your Mom, whatever. Even TV shows and software applications! If it has a page on Facebook, you can see whom amongst your circle of FB friends liked it.
Surprisingly, there’s not even much of a trick to figuring it out, you just have to pay attention to what’s on the page. Let me show you, by seeing which of my friends likes the TV series Game of Thrones. A bit more neutral than political candidates, yes?
First step is to get to the page in question. In my case, I’ll search for “Game of Thrones”:
The first match, “TV Show”, is the one. 4.2 million likes. Crazy impressive!
Once I get to the page, half-way down on the right side is the following:
Cool, but exactly who are these fans? I can see a few tiny thumbnail figures, but that’s insufficient. What I want is a list. Easy enough! Click on “Friends” and a window pops up listing everyone:
(Yes, Alex, Andrew, Beau and Ben, I’ve outed you all as GoT fans!)
That’s nice, but if you go to a fan page that has more than a few of your friends listed, this tiny pop-up is considerably less useful. Turns out that you can force a whole new page to be created instead. Back up to the “Friends” link where it shows the number of your friends who like the page and instead of clicking on it, Cmd-Click (or right-click) on it. A menu pops up:
As highlighted, the choice is “Open Link in New Window” (or similar, depending on which browser you’re running). Choose that and a whole new window will appear with the information in a different format:
That’s it. If you’re following along, you now see whom among your friends are fans of the TV series Game of Thrones. Interesting?
Now I know you want to look at political candidates so I’ll leave that one alone, other than to show that it’s applicable to even those public figures who haven’t had much airtime recently. In this last example, my friends who “like” former Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin:
Even better, if this did make you decide to spontaneously unfollow someone, that’s just a Cmd-Click or Right-Click away:
Can I end with a note about tolerance? Just because someone supports a different political candidate, it really doesn’t make them a bad person, stupid, dangerous or a wacko. Less polarizing political discourse would be a great thing in the world and I hope that you’re just curious, not poised to unfriend people who aren’t in perfect alignment with your own political beliefs. Just my two cents!