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OpenSocial’s Importance Open To Debate

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Google’s products tend to be hit-or-miss affairs – compare the main search engine to Google Catalogs, if you will.  Now, as the release of OpenSocial approaches, opinions seem to be split as to whether it’ll arrive with a bang or as a bust.

OpenSocial's Importance Open To Debate
OpenSocial’s Importance Open To Debate

On the one hand, this is the sort of thing that developers have been asking for with decreasing amounts of patience.  Michael Arrington writes, “The timing of OpenSocial couldn’t be better. . . .  Someone had to build a system to streamline this . . . ”  And OpenSocial will put Google in a position to compete with Facebook and MySpace.

The quality of that competition is what’s debatable, however.  OpenSocial will count LinkedIn, Ning, hi5, iLike, and Slide among its partners, and this group has failed to impress some onlookers.  Adding Orkut (Google’s own network) to the mix doesn’t help matters much; Chris Williams calls the companies a “gaggle of social networking also-rans.”

It also remains to be seen what sort of financial incentive developers will have to embrace OpenSocial.  According to Peter Kafka, “One of the chief appeals of Facebook’s open API is that developers can keep all the ad revenue they generate on the site; we’ve been told effective CPMs for more popular apps can run as high as $20.  Google could certainly offer the same terms . . . but we don’t know if its platform partners are willing or able to be so generous.”

So the success of Google’s new endeavor is not at all assured.  Given another day or so, though, we’ll hopefully begin to learn whether OpenSocial deserves to be associated with Gmail or with the now-deceased Google Answers.

OpenSocial’s Importance Open To Debate
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  • http://www.jasontchander.com?webpronews Jason Chandler

    Yesterday was my first day back to webpronews. I am starting my New Years resolutions early.

    1. Stop procrastinating – check = true
    2. Read more social hooey – check = true
    3. Understand the entire ramifications of Social Bookmarking on the marketing industry – CHECKED = False

    One of my SMO colleagues suggest that talking here is comment spam and is not worth pursuing. I have been a member for sometime now and a loyal “scanner” of email updates but never had the time to engage.

    SO: In my classic seo mind… I have come to the conclusion: [w/ Jill Whalen's help]

    If your intent is in the right place there are no spam worries [in a SE penalty reference]?

    Is this train of thought applicable to social marketing realms?

    Second, since this is where the thought / mental query occurred to me. But now that I have completed the post I am having DMOz anxiety due to I am not sure that this belongs in this post.

    Do I cut from here and galivant off to find a more suitable area to post? I would think the mod’s would be best suited to move you to the right category.

    In hind site: traditionally if you post in the wrong spot do “Social Bookmarkers” in their paranoia SCREAM ‘comment spam’ and delete on site.

    With this in mind I would think that it a judgment call. If the information is measured as a ‘vital task’ then you take the extra few minutes to make sure you do not offend the social bookmarkers or mods.

    I am sure that most of this has been covered starting back in 2003 but I think it best to hear from the Pros, hence why I am expending the effort to reach to the community to share with and stop SEO horde logic of not sharing your ideas… [like SEO is a matter of national security for most SEO’s or maybe more that it is a matter of preservation?

    And I digress… best to all.

    Jason Chandler
    Web by JASE