Social media Hyperlocal
Handout images showing a mockup of Facebook’s Neighborhoods feature. Courtesy, Facebook/via REUTERS

Facebook has expanded Neighborhoods, a space within the social networking app that allows users to connect with neighbors, to two North County communities, officials said.

Carlsbad and Oceanside now can join Facebook Neighborhoods. The cities are two of 130 in the U.S. where the rapidly expanding tool is available after being test piloted in more than 20 cities, including San Diego.

The feature allows for support of local businesses, request for recommendations and connections with community members who share common interests.

Neighborhoods is an opt-in experience within the Facebook app. Once someone opts to join, he or she can decide whether to stick to just one neighborhood or add nearby areas.

Users are asked to introduce themselves, share their interests and answer ice-breaker questions. People may adopt roles like “socializer” or “helper” with their information posted in a local directory.

The feature is designed to take on hyperlocal sites such as Nextdoor, in addition to Amazon Ring’s Neighbors and crime-tracking app Citizen.

The tech giant began testing Neighborhoods in Canada in October 2020, then expanded to four cities by June. In addition to San Diego, Baton Rouge, La. and Charlotte, N.C. and Newark, N.J. served as U.S. Neighborhoods starting points.