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from the L.A. Times

Facebook debuts Smart List, feature automatically groups friends

Taking a page from Google+, Facebook is debuting Smart Lists, a feature that automatically groups friends into coworkers, school buddies and people who live within 50 miles.

You'll also be able to customize messages and status updates to folks on a particular list, tech blog Gizmodo reports, avoiding the hassle of picking through your entire friends list or blasting party invites to people living on the other side of the world.

The feature, which is currently rolling out to select users, seems like a catch-up move by Facebook after rival Google launched its own social network earlier this summer and introduced an easy-to-use grouping system called Circles. Members could sort friends into unique groups and customize profile information for each set, eliminating the hassle of furiously scrubbing your profile before job interviews.

Google+ has garnered about 25 million users thus far. While it still has a ways to go before matching Facebook's population of more than 750 million users, it's a respectable showing for a fledgling network.


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-- Shan Li

Photo: Screen grab of Facebook's Smart Lists. Credit: TechCrunch via @NickStarr

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