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So Much for Facebook Connect? Facebook to Use OpenID, Gmail Login

facebook2Back in February, when Facebook joined the OpenID Foundation, we had to wonder if the move was a presage of things to come. And apparently it was. According to CNET, yesterday Facebook announced that they will become a relying party—a participating site—for OpenID.

If you’ve forgotten/never learned what OpenID is, it’s like a universal login for participating sites. While this is quite cool for Facebook, one has to wonder what’s up: in 2008, Facebook launched Facebook Connect, which has always seemed like a bit of an OpenID competitor.

Facebook Connect allowed FB members to use their FB profiles to comment and participate in different sites across the web. TechCrunch, for example, was one of the first to sign on in December. Now in the TC comments section, you can login to Facebook (or if you’re already logged in, just use your profile) to comment, tying your comment to your profile.

Twitter Counting on Tools, Not Ads, For Revenue

Some exciting news in the world of Twitter. According to Reuters, Twitter will be rolling out revenue-generating features by the year’s end. I know what you’re thinking: “Great, here come the ads.” Well you are wrong, my friend. Twitter believes they can stay ad-free by developing various add-on tools and services for the businesses and professional users of Twitter.

“There are a few reasons why we’re not pursuing advertising — one is it’s just not quite as interesting to us,” Twitter co-founder Biz Stone told the Reuters. “There are no people at Twitter who know anything about advertising or work in advertising. So we don’t have anyone there to make or take those calls.” How comforting.

Facebook Valuation Rumor Mill at Full Tilt

Well, it’s been a relatively quiet week or so regarding Facebook so let’s see what the talk around town is. It looks tofacebook-logo be about Facebook’s valuation and whether they are seeking money or not. Also, if they are seeking some more cash what is it for? Some say a stock buy back from employees. Some say something else. It’s social media’s version of ‘He said, she said’ but the truth must be in there somewhere, right?

After all, we couldn’t continue to function if there was no Facebook, correct? Sorry, it’s early and there isn’t enough coffee in me to cool the sarcasm on this kind of stuff. I realize that by writing about I add to the fray but unfortunately until someone comes up with something that can generate the kind of users that a Facebook or Twitter can we may be stuck with this for a while but I digress.

Twitter Co-Founder Dorsey Talks Retention and Stability

Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey has a lot to be happy about. Every time he hears a bird he thinks about his success.twitter-logo It seems that he can’t turn around anywhere anymore without hearing something about Twitter and how it is poised to take over the world or at least allows Ashton Kutcher to feel like he has a lot of pals. Interestingly enough, despite the immense success there appears to be little complacency at Twitter but rather a genuine interest in seeing the service do the basics well.

Dorsey recognizes that the retention factor is one that is in need of attention. He talked to Mark Milian of the LA Times last week while in Washington to visit the White House. Rather than talk about the glitz of the nation’s capital he talked about the sign up process for Twitter.

Twitter, Local Business and Results

32-twitterlocal-051809It is no real surprise that Twitter has application to the SMB (small and medium business) space. There have been success stories talked about for some time no. What is starting to happen, however, that the success the small business has been having is no longer just a business owner stating “Yup, it worked!” According to AdAge two case studies they looked at are starting to put numbers to that success.

Let’s get a small detail out of the way first though. As you can see from the quote below it is likely that the business profiled may have a bit more going for it than the average Mom and Pop or small business.

Twitter’s Takin’ Care of Biz-ness

So Twitter caused a bit of controversy this week as they changed their @replies feature in a way that actually effected just 3% of their users twitter-birdbut the backlash felt like they had flipped Twitter nation the bird. One couldn’t help but be reminded of the terms of service soap opera that Facebook endured in the past few months as well.

So what’s one to learn from this? Well, if you are Twitter co-founder Biz Stone you learn the ropes of blogging before you do your homework. In his post from late in the day on Thursday he talks about some of the mistakes he made in this process as well as attempts to explain the whole situation more clearly.

As for his mea culpa Stone said the following:

eMarketer Predicts Social Media Advertising Will Fizzle in 2009

If you’ve not stopped popping champagne since we published Forrester’s predictions for social media marketing, you might need the Alka-Seltzer after you see eMarketer’s contrary estimates.

Not good with tables? Bottom line, eMarketer is predicting a 3% decline in social network ad spending in 2009. That decline comes after a 129% increase in 2007 and a 33% increase in 2008.

Why the contrast to Forrester? Two things to note. eMarketer has revised its data based on the gloomy prediction from MySpace parent News Corp. Also, we’re not quite comparing apples with apples here. This decline is for social media advertising–we assume Forrester’s prediction includes other marketing and PR efforts that utilize social media.