Saturday, June 23, 2007

Facebook & LinkedIn Open Up has a lead article on the promise of Facebook. While the headlines are a little grandiose, I do agree with the conclusions, albeit for different reasons. Specifically, I think that Facebook is poised to become both an entrenched and fundamentally revolutionary web platform. I think opening up to the development platform to the developer community at large will accelerate this trend, but what I think that Facebook fundamentally got right, better than any other major player in the social networking space, is their underlying model of a social network - how they represent the people, relationships, entities, and other parts of what makes our lives rich, outside of the internet.

Once a few years pass and a generation (with a small g) comes of age with social networking technology, and the hub-bub of college freshman's profiles coming back to haunt them as job seekers (and similar stories) disappear, I think you'll find the data, user base, and applications supported by a platform like Facebook to be truly enriching to our day to day lives - from dating, to maintaining friendships over continents, to nurturing communities of interests, to professional uses like job seeking, recruiting, and even relationship-based selling.

It'll be interesting to see how it all plays.

In related news, LinkedIn has announced that it will be opening up its platform, as well, in the next year. Also, check out Mashable, a cool blog that I've only recently found, reviewing trends in social networking websites. I'll try to come back to what I like about Facebook, and more generally on social networking and community websites in a future post, but it just hasn't been top of mind recently.

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