Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Open Social Networking - The Future

The future of social networking is open source. The idea of not being able to take all your profiles history with you when you leave FB is completely the opposite of the ethos of the web. I foresee that every person will have his or her own profile on a web url that is built on an open source software much as the backbone of the web is reliant on Linux. This would allow your profile to lock in and be rendered through any specific gui interface.

In other words I always log into my web profile at say www.saulwainwright.com and through that I can go to my FB page, Twitter etc. Yet, everything that I have is in one place, at saulwainwright.com and belongs to me. Certain information I can control and limit, certain information can be accessed by certain applications such as FB and other cannot. So, I can have all my videos on my server under my profile and I can share some with say FB and some with Youtube, but the video itself remains mine forever, even if Youtube grabs a copy and places it on their server, the rights remain with me and they, Youtube, has to give me all data related to it – who saw it, when their comments etc. All this information is sent back to me in a standard open source format that allows me to store it and potentially share that data with another network – say FB. This means that what people need to ultimately design is the interface, we the people, own the back end.

Kind of like going to a coffee shop because it has a nice ambiance and good coffee and maybe some good books, in fact you may even meet some people there. But, at the end of the day you go back to your home, with the numbers, conversations and any other “data” you picked up. You may go off to another bar that night and bump into the same person or new person, a person that has never gone to that coffee shop. But, you can easily share all the information you acquired at the first coffee shop because you have it on you, it is in your cell phone your brain your notebook. That is social networking. Not today’s form, this is social control.

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