All in Social Network Portability

Facebook Connect Raises Complex Data Portability and Data Sharing Issues

Successful system operation frequently depends on the quality of the data it contains. Social networking systems rely on the ability their members have to manage and keep up to date information about their identities. They also rely on the ability to describe and act upon data about relationships with other network members. If identity or relationship data are faulty, unstable, or inconsistent, the operation of the social network, and the performance of network based transactions related to it, will suffer.
Jeremiah Owyang’s LiveBlog: What’s Wrong with the White Label Social Networking Industry?, especially if you read the comments, delivers a good snapshot of the gaps that still exist between product evangelism and the realities of implementing specialized online social networks.
I received an email commenting on Social Networking and Elsevier’s “Grand Challenge” for Knowledge Enhancement in the Life Sciences. I had suggested that networked access to published health science authors would be useful in emergency situations where there is the need for rapid access to high quality health information from many different sources.

What Comes After Web Sites and Online Social Networks?

Today we use the web in many ways. Traditional web sites — “places we go” on the web to do things — still exist. But increasingly, web based transactions also depend on the nature of our online relationships with other people.
One year ago I published Balkanization of the Web - or Just Better Focus? There I expressed concern that the proliferation of specialized search engines — and the indexing to support them — would lead to a more fragmented web. I thought that gaining the benefits of specialization could ultimately reduce the benefits we experience from the nearly universal access to web based contents that we’ve been taking for granted.
Lee White and I recently initiated an experiment, described here, that consists of our writing about a specific topic (project management and social media) on our respective blogs. Lee writes a post on his blog, I respond on my blog, then we combine and display the posts and the comments we receive in a single RSS feed.
I’ve made some attempt to keep up with public discussions of DataPortability.org. I’ve had a suspicion that the project is experiencing the growing pains that technology industry standards groups sometimes experience when there is no single strong and deep-pocketed voice willing to weigh in, knock heads, and force progress along a single path.

Social Data Portability, Privacy, and DRM

When Bob Weber published his post-CES DRM 3.0 Has Arrived he made the point that, while DRM for music may be dying, the entertainment industry’s interest in Digital Rights Management is still quite strong. This got me to wondering whether this “next generation DRM” might have some relevance to current interest in social network portability.