Google leads group assault on Facebook

1 11 2007
The search engine and its allies will offer a single, cross-site open platform, hoping to lure developers away from Facebook

Google and some of the world’s largest social networks have launched their most aggressive attack yet on Facebook, their young rival.

An alliance of companies led by the search engine is planning to introduce a set of common standards that will let software developers write programs for Google’s social network, Orkut, and others such as LinkedIn and Friendster.

The strategy draws inspiration from a feature introduced by Facebook earlier this year, which enables outside developers to write applications for the site, which can then be downloaded and shared by Facebook users.

A cross-site, open platform will, Google hopes, be more attractive to developers than Facebook, and siphon off some of the momentum from the rapidly growing site, for which more than 5,000 applications have been written since it opened its platform in May. Read the rest of this entry »

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OpenSocial goes live! Member #45

1 11 2007

Google’s OpenSocial goes live today. I am member #45 of the OpenSocial Network. This new social networking site will definitly be a new trend for Social Networking in the Internet. As Google promised this site does allow user created API to be placed anywhere online (wherever it is possible). Being the 45th member of a humumgous companys’ social networking site has been a great previlage for me!

Join Now!! Its great!! And the best part is, you don’t have to get invitations to join like what happened in Orkut!!





Google takes on FaceBook with OpenSocial

31 10 2007

Google’s open social networking platform play is the buzz of the blogosphere tonight. (see Techmeme). Indeed, it is called OpenSocial in that the set of APIs allows developers to create applications that work on any social network that joins Google’s open party. So far, besides Google’s Orkut social net, LinkedIn, hi5, XING, Friendster, Plaxo and Ning (see Marc Andreessen’s post) have joined the party.

Oracle and salesforce.com are also supporting Google’s OpenSocial efforts, which indicates that they have plans to add social networking elements to their application platforms. OpenSocial will officially launch on Thursday.

Plaxo emailed a statement about OpenSocial this evening, getting ahead of the stampede:

“Dynamic profiles redefine what users should expect in terms of how they can represent themselves in a social or business network,” said Todd Masonis, Co-Founder and VP of Products for Plaxo. “We believe that users should have full control over what they share with whom – and that the catalog of widgets that they can choose from should be as open and diverse as the web itself. We are excited to support in dynamic profiles any application written to Google’s just–launched OpenSocial APIs. ”

According to TechCrunch, which first reported on Google’s larger social networking ambitions, OpenSocial consists of APIs for profile information, friend information (social graph) and activities, such as a news feed. OpenSocial users Javascript and HTML rather than a markup language as Facebook does.

This comes on the heels of the Facebook’s dynamic growth based on opening its social graph to developers and Microsoft’s $240 million investment for 1.6 percent of the company. However, unlike Google, Facebook doesn’t open its APIs to support other social networks. The other social networking giant, MySpace, is also planning to open its platform to developers.

This openness is part of what Vic Gundotra, Google’s head of developer programs, meant when he said last week, “In the next year we will make a series of announcements and spend hundreds of millions on innovations and giving them away as open source.”

He explained the newfound openness as more than altruism: “It also makes good economic sense. The more applications, the more usage. More users means more searches. And, more searches means more revenue for Google. The goal is to grow the overall market, not just to increase market share.”

What does OpenSocial mean for Facebook? Read the rest of this entry »





MySpace is on to Books

30 10 2007

The online social network, an increasingly popular venue for authors, booksellers and publishers, is collaborating with a children’s imprint of HarperCollins on an environmental handbook coming out April 22, Earth Day.

“How great it is to launch a partnership with a company with as large an influence as MySpace on such an important topic,” Jane Friedman, President and CEO of HarperCollins, said Wednesday in a statement.

“MySpace has entire online communities, such as the Impact Channel and OurPlanet, dedicated solely to environmental and social causes,” Tom Anderson, co-founder and president of MySpace, said in a statement. “The first MySpace book is just one more way we are working to engage the MySpace community in environmental issues and encourage people to take action.”

The paperback original, to be called “MySpace/Our Planet: Change is Possible,” will be written by freelance journalist Jeca Taudte and include a foreword by Anderson. According to Brenda Bowen, vice president and publisher of the Bowen Press, a HarperCollins imprint, “MySpace/Our Planet” will be about 160 pages and cost about $12.95. A first printing of 200,000 is planned.

The book will feature ideas from MySpace users, who through Nov. 7 can post environmental tips on http://www.myspace.com/ourplanet. Bowen says about 40 such suggestions, their length ranging from a sentence to a paragraph, will be woven throughout the text. MySpace contributors who end up in the book will not be paid, but will be credited by their usernames and geographic locations.

“The main idea we want to get across is that teenagers are not only contributing to this book, but are being provided a blueprint on how to help the environment,” Bowen told The Associated Press.

MySpace already has projects with other media, including a collaboration with MTV on dialogues between voters and presidential candidates. Bowen and MySpace’s senior vice president for public affairs, Jeff Berman, agree that other book projects are likely.

“We’re always talking to potential partners about big ideas and this one with HarperCollins made a lot of sense,” Berman says. “We want to be at the forefront of user-generated media, and books are an important part of that.”