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Google Welcomes Yahoo to OpenSocial

Two related stories today – one that Yahoo has joined Google’s OpenSocial. Yahoo seems to be in a collaborative mood lately (except with Microsoft).

Yahoo has also joined the OpenSocial Foundation (links to Yahoo’s press release). The foundation includes Google, Yahoo, and MySpace.com. OpenSocial Foundation is a nonprofit organization to promote a universal standard for applications on social-networking sites.

Facebook is steadily refusing to participate in OpenSocial or the foundation, choosing instead to support Facebook developers. Facebook is credited with starting and fueling the development of social network applications.

Google is emphasizing that OpenSocial is a community effort (or as Mozilla puts it, “a public benefit”) and not for Google’s benefit only. In true form, it has a web site (OpenSocial.org) built on Google’s new Google Sites platform. There’s also a Blogger blog for OpenSocial.

OpenSocial is creating a common API that works on multiple websites. According to the site: “The ultimate goal is for any social website to be able to implement the API and host 3rd party social applications. There are many websites implementing OpenSocial, including Engage.com, Friendster, hi5, Hyves, imeem, LinkedIn, MySpace, Ning, Oracle, orkut, Plaxo, Salesforce.com, Six Apart, Tianji, Viadeo, and XING.”

Here are some examples of applications that have already been built on OpenSocial.

  • http://www.thevanblog.com Steven Bradley

    I can understand why Facebook would prefer to stick with their own API, but in time I would think developers will spend their time learning the API that gives them more bang for their buck.

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