Nov. 5, 2010

Posted by in Facebook | 13 comments

How to Export Your Facebook Friends’ E-mail Addresses

Last night, TechCrunch reported that Google will now require sites that import e-mail addresses from Gmail to also allow export of their data. The move was clearly aimed at Facebook, which has kept Google from accessing their users’ data. In response, many people have mentioned that while Facebook lets users download some data, they’re still not able to download an e-mail address book of their Facebook contacts.

However, that’s not quite the case. Back in March, I published a guide to exporting data from Facebook using various tricks and FQL queries. Facebook has since made changes and added tools which have made the post a bit outdated, but much of the information still applies. In particular, I described using Yahoo’s contact import tool to download an e-mail address book for all your Facebook friends. This technique relies on a Facebook-approved feature and should not violate the site’s terms of service. A few specific steps have changed a bit, so I’ll recap the process here.

First, you need to have a Yahoo! Mail account. If you don’t already have one, you can create one for free. In fact, I’d advise creating a new account to avoid your Facebook friends’ e-mail addresses getting mixed up with any others already in your address book.

  1. To add your friends’ e-mail addresses to your Yahoo! Address Book, follow the steps given on this page at the Yahoo! Mail blog. Essentially, you open Contacts, click on “Tools,” then “Import,” choose “Facebook,” and follow the steps. You will have to authorize a Facebook application built by Yahoo! for this purpose.
  2. To save a local copy of these addresses, you can use the export tools in Yahoo! Address Book. Return to your Contacts, once again click “Tools,” and this time select “Export.” You’ll be presented with a list of programs, each with an “Export Now” button.
  3. If you’re not sure which you should choose, I would recommend clicking the button next to Microsoft Outlook. You may have to enter a code a CAPTCHA code, but you’ll then be prompted to save a file in CSV format. This is a fairly standard way of saving contact information.
  4. Once you’ve downloaded the file, you can use it to import your contacts into other places, including Outlook. You can also open the file in Microsoft Excel to view the contact list or make changes.
  1. :( Facebook says: “”Sorry, something went wrong. We’re working on getting this fixed as soon as we can.”"

  2. Starts to process, and then “Congratulations! 0 new contacts imported”

  3. fromthepast says:

    i have done this, works perfect but, i have a litle problem. I have a “friend” in my facebook account from who i cant import his address and i don’t know why, whe don’t have groups. Please respond urgently. 10x.

  4. Works like a bomb! I now own my very own contact base :)

  5. try to make somthing more advance
    private bug in facebook….
    or yahoo web massnger pr8 bug

  6. why I read comments everywhere that is works for someone and it doesnt for someone else…
    Once I managed to export 800emails at once without problem (like 2 months ago) but now I cannot even export 200 or less.
    I tried to to it for friends but no success

    It only says “try later / restart import” or “0 items imported”

    I tried chrome,firefox, IE… all the same results
    what’s the trick?

  7. @Logical and @oren: I’ve seen reports from other people that it hasn’t worked, but so far it just seems that the feature can be glitchy at times rather than Facebook choosing to block it or something. Also, if you’re using an address that already has contacts, it may not add duplicates.

    @fromthepast: I don’t know if this is what you’re encountering, but if the friend does not have their e-mail address displayed on their profile, it won’t get exported – this feature doesn’t override any privacy settings.

    @RGH: I’ve spent plenty of time finding Facebook bugs, but I think this method serves its purpose quite well without any hackery. :)

  8. I couldn’t get it to work in Firefox but it did in Chrome!

  9. I also received the message “Congratulations! 0 contacts imported” Any thoughts on how to fix it?

  10. I really like your share, it brought me thinking and some inspiration, I appreciate you
    Very glad to see it
    The next time I hope to be able to see again so good to share

  11. I didn’t knew that you can save your friends emails from facebook. This is handy! Thanks!


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