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Re: Privacy Jungle: Data Protection in Social Networks

From: Story Henry <henry.story@bblfish.net>
Date: Mon, 22 Jun 2009 15:43:20 +0200
Cc: "'Melvin Carvalho'" <melvincarvalho@gmail.com>, 'Sören Preibusch' <Soren.Preibusch@cl.cam.ac.uk>, <public-xg-socialweb@w3.org>, <public-pling@w3.org>
Message-Id: <A1684C7C-BB9D-4702-932C-ADA45265A94A@bblfish.net>
To: "Christine Perey" <cperey@perey.com>

On 22 Jun 2009, at 15:26, Christine Perey wrote:

> The lack of participation of commercial communities/community  
> operators in
> this XG concerns me. It could reflect that the commercial community
> providers perceive standards in this domain (you called them "open
> frameworks") as threatening. Perhaps they have not had time to read  
> Henry's
> post ;-)

They probably have not read it, as it is not yet big enough to appear  
on their radar screen. We need to build more demos and show this  
working in more spaces to convince them.

> If there were not already billions of personal records already  
> (safely?)
> locked in current (proprietary) databases, these businesses would not
> constitute a risk to SWXG future impact.

I think they are moving in the right direction, with LinkedIn and  
FaceBook now providing URLs for their users for example, and moving  
towards OpenId. It is not much of a step to move to foaf+ssl from  
there. I think if we have good demos, a good story on distributed  
access rights, it won't take a lot for them to get on board.

>  If we want those in existing communities to embrace future W3C  
> standards for
> social networking, would it not behoove us to suggest a path  
> (roadmap) to
> embracing the proposed standard without jeopardizing commercial  
> viability of
> these services?

yes. Good idea.

> We could hypothesize that commercial companies don't hold all the  
> cards:
>     We know that Compuserve and AOL had healthy businesses providing
> information and communications services to consumers using their own
> technology for portal, etc which did not survive the adoption of Web
> standards by other information service providers.

I don't agree with that reading. AOL was so successful with the  
Opening of the web that they then were able to buy Time Warner in the  
biggest internet takeover of a traditional media company. The  
execution that followed was problematic, but that was more likely due  
to the integration problems. Most mergers are failures.

> It is convenient that the study focuses on privacy and data  
> protection.
> Can there be proprietary platforms for operating community-centric
> experiences which use a standards-based approach only for managing  
> data
> protection/sharing/portability?

yes. These operators would have huge advantages in name recognition  
and capital that should allow them to grow into an open network with  
great success.

Received on Monday, 22 June 2009 13:44:00 UTC

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