Working Toward Activity Stream Standards

Getting Everyone On the Same Page

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In San Francisco last night, Six Apart (who recently launched data portability initiative Motion) hosted a roundtable to discuss the future of activity stream standards. In attendance were people from Google, Yahoo, MySpace, Facebook, Nokia, Plaxo, Comcast, and others.

"That means there’s representation for projects that span DiSo, OpenSocial, Open Stack, Facebook Connect, Y!OS, MySpaceID, among others," notes John McCrea, who liveblogged the meeting, and also shares the following related video from the Open Stack Meetup:

The mission: make some progress toward a standardization of user generated content or "activity streams."

Imagine if all the social networks were somehow unified as one communication medium. Marshall Kirkpatrick at Read Write Web uses a couple of really good analogies to describe the event:

1. "Just like a standard size of railroad track helped the trains get across the US like they had never done before (thus opening a new era of commerce and communication) so to do all these social media signals need some common format standards to travel from one website to another."

2. "Activity streams are already a big deal, but if these conversations can be fruitful, the results will be as big as the point in history when customers of different email providers became able to email each other or different telephone company customers became able to call each others’ phones."

It’s quite obvious that the web is going in a more social direction altogether, and the need to have such standards will increase right along with the number of sites going social. With all these data portability projects on the loose, it’s going to be important to have some common ground established, and it’s great to see all of these players are working together to acheive this.   

Working Toward Activity Stream Standards
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    It’s pretty standard in the telecom world that a standard be put in place so everyone can interoperate.

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