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Friends Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Friend?  How can I become a Friend?
Friends are supporters of  If you think we have something good going here and would like to become a supporter, please visit our donation page.

If I become a Friend, what do I get?
Becoming a Friend is about helping, i.e. you "get" to help us grow, meaning more providers to choose from, and more customers for those providers, in a supportive, full-featured environment for everyone to enjoy.  At our option, we may also extend to you a token of our appreciation.

What exactly is a token and how do I get one?
Certain features of this web site are available only to Friends, accessible by entering a special token (a private combination of letters and numbers much like a password).  Like friends, such tokens cannot be purchased, but at our option, we may give them away as thank you gifts to Friends of  The tokens are non-transferable and are valid for a limited time only.  If you've received one of these tokens of our appreciation, you may enter it on our Friends-only page.

What benefits can I access with a token?
A Friend of token is your invitation to enjoy a number of select benefits, including:

  • Expanded access to provider profiles omitted from standard search results (* see answer below)
  • Advanced search options not otherwise available to the general public
  • Record your favorite providers with a click, and share with Friends
  • Peek into the likes and dislikes of other Friends, and give others a peek into yours
  • Make notes on providers to share with your Friends or for your own personal use
  • Remove providers from your search results so you don't have to see them again
  • Tune your searches to favor the newest providers in your area
  • And more!

With expanded access, can I view "hidden profiles"?
On a discretionary basis, some providers may be omitted from standard search results.  If this is what you mean by "hidden", then yes, a Friends token may enable you to access these profiles.  But some profiles are hidden by providers who, for example, may be on vacation or not looking for additional business at this time, or their profiles may be pending review.  Expanded access does not override moderator review, legal and anti-spam protections or a provider's own choices to limit publication of his/her information, but with expanded access, a more generous cap may be placed on the number of search results returned.

When does my token expire?
Each token has its own unique expiration date.  Specific information about your token's expiration is available on our Friends-only page.

My token expired.  How can I access my favorites, bookmarks, etc. again after my token expired?  Is there a way to extend my token's expiration date?
At our option, we may renew your token upon request.  The recommended way to request a renewal of your token is to first enter your expired token on our Friends-only page (you'll get a message reminding you that your token is expired), and then renew your support of  With token renewal, you may again have access to your previous favorites, bookmarks, etc. just like you did before your token expired, unless you deleted them or they've otherwise already been cleaned from the system (e.g. if too much time elapsed between the expiration and renewal of your token).

How can I read other people's comments about a provider?
In general, you have to be Designated by the other person before you can read the other person's comments.  You can check the Friends-only page to see which Friends, if any, have Designated you and see if those Friends have written any comments that you can read.  You will also need to either Designate that person yourself or click the value for that person under the "Comments" column in the Friends-only page table in order to read that person's comments.

When I write a comment about a provider, I see an option to make my comment readable by anyone.  If I choose that option, will my comment be readable by persons I have not specifically Designated?
The answer is maybe yes.  If you choose the option to make your comment readable by anyone, you should assume that your comment may potentially be seen by anyone, even if, at present, we only permit your Designated Friends to read it.

Why does the Friends-only page not count all the comments I've written?
The value shown under "Comments" column in the table does not include your private comments, i.e. comments you wrote for only you to read.  It includes only the comments others can read.

Why does it say "No viewable profile was retrieved" when I search my Friend's favorites?
Check the location you're searching on the Search menu.  For example, it might be because your search location is New York while your Friend's favorites are all in Los Angeles.  You can view all your Friend's favorites (or deleted, bookmarked or commented profiles) wherever they are by using the clickable table on the Friends-only page.

I sometimes see a Friends Key in parentheses, such as (JohnWitherspoon).  What does this mean?
It means that Key does not actually belong to one of your Designated Friends but was temporarily included in a pulldown menu for convenience purposes only (e.g. you used the Friends-only page to view the favorites of a non-Designated Friend).  If you subsequently add that Key to your Designated Friends, the parentheses will no longer be shown.

How can I make my Key private again after I previously shared it with some other Friends?

  1. First, unclick the Autoshare option to disable autosharing of your Key.
  2. Next, unclick any Designated Friends you no longer want to keep.  Each Designated Friend you keep will continue to have access to your Key after you change it.
  3. Submit the above changes.
  4. Finally, create and submit a new Key for yourself.

My Friends list is empty.  How can I add Friends to my list?
With patience and support.  Public participation in anyone's Friends list is voluntary.  Some Friends have larger Friends lists than others, but you're all our Friends and we thank you for your support.

Is there a way to cancel my Friends token?
You can surrender your Friends token if you do not want it.  Once you surrender your Friends token, that particular token becomes unusable.  Please remember that a Friends token is a gift given at our option to you, a simple token of our appreciation, and is not purchased.  There is no refund, no resale and no authorized transfer of your Friends token, and it is valid for a limited time only.

Do you have a question not answered here?  Let us know.  Use of the Friends service is subject to the Terms of Service.

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