Social data portability has been a hotly debated topic with a range of emerging standards competing for adoption.
Afterall, single signon to the web offers a great deal of immediate benefits for users.
Dataportability open standards group has been marketing the concept for a few years now, which supports the OpenID login standard and has been adopted by Yahoo, eBay, Photobucket, and Twitter, and MySpace. Google’s Friend Connect and Facebook’s Facebook Connect are both offering open API’s to developers who can integrate their own login details with one of these major players. Mashable has a good coverage of both of these tools here
Whilst this is interesting, it’s often not easy to visualise the possibilities of what Data Portability actually means for the end user.
This presentation from Razorfish looks at what might happen if Amazon and Itunes implemented Facebook Connect and cleverly paints a picture of how the experience of their sites would be enhanced.
I have no doubt that sharing of information between social networks will continue to be embraced, and as long as consumers feel safe that they are in control of their own information and relationships, then the privacy issues can be managed.
For business, allowing ease of signups, as well as potential access to the large amounts of personal information presents a great opportunitiy. So if you have a site that has a large database of users, it’s probably a good time to be considering integrating Facebook’s Facebook Connect and / or Google’s Friend Connect