Internet Social Media

How To Use Facebook Places Location Tagging Safely [Weekly Facebook Tips]

Angela Randall 13-11-2012

use facebook places featureIf you’re on Facebook a bit, you’ve probably noticed people adding a location to their posts and photos, tagging their friends in locations and generally making it clear that they’re out and about having a great time. Maybe you have had a go at this yourself or perhaps you’ve never managed to get around to it.


What is clear about Facebook location tagging though, is that it’s easy and it’s good fun. Here’s how you can get started with Facebook Places, a few cool tips and tricks and a final word of caution.

Add A Location To Updates

To add your location to a Facebook update, either start by clicking “Places” just above your update box or click on the location marker below the text when you’ve written your update. You’ll see a drop-down list of suggested nearby places, containing towns and popular venues. If none of these apply, just start typing the name of the place you want to add.

If you type in a business name, it will usually find the Facebook page associated with the location, or if you type in a geographical location you might find a community page.

use facebook places feature

how to use facebook places


Here’s a Facebook video of how to add a location to a post.

Add A Location To Photos

Manually adding a location to photos and albums is easy and very similar to regular updates. Simply go to the photo or album you want to tag and click on the location icon. Then type in the location name until the right one shows up.

how to use facebook places

Photo location can be automatically tagged if you choose to upload geotagged photos taken with your smartphone or other GPS-enabled camera. You can usually set your phone’s Facebook application settings to stop your photos being uploaded with location automatically.


Tagging A Location With Your Friends

When tagging updates and photos with location, you can also tag your friends as being with you. In updates, just start typing their name using a capital letter to begin. In photos, you can either tag their picture or say that you were “with” certain people in the individual photo. Or you can tag them in the album description if they were with you for the whole event. Not only will this make the post show up in the person’s timeline, but it will show their location for that update or photo in their Places map.

Think before you tag your friends, though. Just because they didn’t lock down their privacy settings doesn’t mean they want to be tagged at a gay bar. If you’re worried about your own privacy, head to Privacy Settings > Timeline And Tagging and make sure you set all posts you’ve been tagged in to need your review before they are added to your timeline.

View Your Facebook Places Map

To see your Places map, head to your profile timeline and click on “Map“. You can do the same thing on any of your friends’ timelines or you can use the URL format that follows:

Using this map, you can easily browse the towns and exact locations of photos and updates you’ve been tagged in. If you have lots of location tags, you can narrow it down by year using the timeline on the right, just as you can do for the timeline as a whole. It’s a great way to revisit your travels and re-live a bit of the excitement.


how to use facebook places

You might also want to check out:

Privacy Note

Think a little about the safety of yourself and your home before you broadcast your location to everyone on Facebook. If you make it clear you’re on holiday, thieves may well consider breaking into your house. If everyone knows you’re out at a concert, then that lurking stalker might decide to conveniently be where you are later that night.

use facebook places feature


With this in mind, be careful about location posts. Perhaps limit photos, posts you are tagged in and location posts you make to your very good friends only by using your “Close Friends” list or a hand-picked friends list. The next day you can always open the post up to the rest of your friends to let them know you were out having a great time – at least then your safety isn’t compromised while you are out. Also, be careful with tagging yourself in your favourite places regularly as you don’t want your lurking stalker to know how often you’re there.

I also like to ensure my phone doesn’t know my exact location whenever I’m near my home or any of my friends’ houses, so I use Tasker to turn off GPS whenever I’m near those places. That way, if I take photos while I’m there the location will be tagged as the nearest big town, which I hope is adequately obscure.

More reading:

Related topics: Geotagging, Online Privacy.

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  1. Brandon Clark
    November 14, 2012 at 8:39 pm

    This goes perfectly with .

  2. Muhammad Ahmad
    November 14, 2012 at 4:05 pm

    how facebook know our location?

    • Angela Alcorn
      November 15, 2012 at 11:17 am

      Some people have entered their home address into Facebook and not properly protected it to just a few friends.

      Then, Places allows people to say exactly where they and their friends are.

      Also, people using applications on their phones will usually have GPS which gives Facebook the exact location if they choose to add that to their update.

  3. Boni Oloff
    November 14, 2012 at 1:48 pm

    Some people miss the privacy settings, so they share their location to the public that make other people also know where he is.

  4. Chew Jian Yue
    November 14, 2012 at 11:14 am

    I hate people tracking my location and spreading out where I live.

  5. Anonymous
    November 14, 2012 at 1:37 am

    I tend not to put my home address on social media but I put location and check in quite a bit. Interesting not all check in systems seem to talk to each other, if you check in on Facebook directly it seems to be stored in a different data base to if you check in using the Nokia app, anyone know why?
    Alerting a thief to being away from your house is a concern. Not all occupants of the property use Facebook, the dogs find it most difficult to write a post.

    • Angela Alcorn
      November 14, 2012 at 1:26 pm

      That's odd. I'm not even sure how that would be possible...

  6. Tony Gonzaga
    November 14, 2012 at 12:27 am

    I'm using Foursquare.

  7. Anestis Kozakis
    November 14, 2012 at 12:05 am

    Hell no. I don't want to broadcast to the criminal community that I'm not at home....

    • Terafall
      November 14, 2012 at 12:54 pm

      Same here.But I wonder why many people still do that?

      • Angela Alcorn
        November 14, 2012 at 1:26 pm

        I think a lot of people just don't connect the dots...