Despite all the challenges with Facebook contacts, it is possible to download your contacts and information out of Facebook and into Fieldnotes. We know that it is important to organize all your network and contacts into a single list.  Unfortunately with the closing of Facebook's API, we are all challenged when it comes to plugging Fieldnotes or any other apps directly into Facebook to access those contacts.  There's no easy way around getting that much-desired contact information.  Facebook offers you a chance to download all of your information. This includes any photos of you or that you uploaded, any ads you've clicked or posts you shared, and most importantly, your friend list. What is the downside? It's merely a list of names. But it's a list that you now have...and that's still important.

Start exporting Facebook Contacts..

1. Sign into Facebook 

2. In the top right hand corner, click on the downward facing arrow dropdown menu

3. Click on 'Settings' towards the bottom of that menu

4. You'll be redirected to your General Settings page where you usually can make changes to your overall profile, security, and settings within the platform. Towards the bottom of that page, you'll see 'Download Your Information.' Click there!

5. You'll be prompted to re-enter your password for security purposes and then yet again, you'll need to select which information you want to download.. Click on 'Friends' here and if you're feeling interested, go ahead and check out the options to see what exactly will be included in your archive of data. You can also find that information here on their help site. 

6. You'll get this email below from Facebook to the email address associated with your Facebook account.

7. Within an hour, you should receive a second email with a link to download your information. This link will only be active for a few days from when you got the email, so make sure that you take action quickly.

8. You'll see this very familiar page again and be prompted to re-enter your password (again) before your download can begin.

9. Keep in mind, this is a fairly large .zip file you're about to download and it may take a while to get it on to your computer. But once you do, you might be a bit confused. What you'll see is the breakdown of the html of all the information.

10. From here, you can open up one of these items - it will automatically open in your browser. You can toggle throughout the different archived information once you open up the the page in your browser. But what you're most interested in is the 'Friends' tab.

11. Here's our big 'ol list. It's unclear what the order is here, but it's certainly not alphabetical or even by the most recent interaction. You'll first see a list of your current Facebook friends, scroll down for your 'sent friend requests', 'received friend requests', and 'removed friends'.

12. Highlight your current friends, right click to copy, and then paste it into a spreadsheet. From there, you can split the cells, filter them into alphabetical order and get them organized.

13.  Now the hard work is done, you simply email that list to Sparky ( to upload the contacts into your database.  That's it!

What's next?

There's no perfect solution here. Particularly when you can't export the contact details for your Facebook friends. With the list of names, you can start to breakdown and categorize the names into a digestible list to work with.   With all of our social media platforms, it's too easy to forget who we know or who we may need to follow-up with and check in.  Consolidating your list of contacts from Facebook and other platforms (LinkedIn) into one database allows you to know who you need to reach out to and who you may not need in your contact list anymore. Take the time to search through, clear out, and make the most of your Facebook friends!