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Facebook Just Pulled a Netscape – Hey Facebook What Are You Thinking May 15, 2008

Posted by John in Technology.
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Facebook just pulled a Netscape. What the hell are they thinking? They just flipped off Google and others in this openness war – how? by being closed.

Most of the Facebook kids were not around when Netscape blew it to Microsoft. Now Facebook is making a blunder to fight Google on a frontal basis.

Here they write via their developer blog ….hold on let me get the violin out..”Now that Google has launched Friend Connect, we’ve had a chance to evaluate the technology. We’ve found that it redistributes user information from Facebook to other developers without users’ knowledge, which doesn’t respect the privacy standards our users have come to expect and is a violation of our Terms of Service. Just as we’ve been forced to do for other applications that redistribute data in a way users might not expect or understand, we’ve had to suspend Friend Connect’s access to Facebook user information until it comes into compliance. We’ve reached out to Google several times about this issue, and hope to work with them to enable users to share their data exactly when and where they choose.”

Kara Swisher please decode this for us? I think that this is garbage for Facebook to do this – Hello Beacon…

I have been following Facebook for some time and never got one response from their PR people. I’m tired of waiting. My opinion is that this move is bad. What a PR blunder.

Update: Mike Arrington has a detailed post from both companies. Nice post Mike!.

Facebook: Privacy my ass – This is a Facebook PR stunt backfired…this imho only hurts Facebooks platform development efforts because FB need to develop the platform and this petty shit has to stop.. ..Elliott’s 2nd day on the job. Nice job pal – NOT.

Yahoo Joines OpenSocial Per My Blog Post to Jerry Yang :-) March 25, 2008

Posted by John in social media, Technology.
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In January I blogged that Jerry Yang will have to join opensocial.

Now it’s time for Yahoo to step up. I find the non-profit angle very interesting. It reminds me of the old IETF days… nothing really gets done but it certainly looks good on paper.

Facebook will be under a ton of pressure especially on the innovation side. I’d like to see what their R&D plan is like?

Yahoo joining OpenSocial is a major win for Google and a blow to Facebook.

From a Source: Yahoo Joining OpenSocial March 12, 2008

Posted by John in social media.
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I saw this coming a mile away in January but the Microsoft bid must have slowed it down.  After my initial blog posts I got a tip from a source close to Yahoo confirming my earlier posts that Yahoo will be joining Opensocial.  NY Times is breaking this story – finally.

Word on the street is that the Microsoft hostile takeover has put the Opensocial deal on ice until now.   The timing of Yahoo joining Opensocial puts the pressure on Microsoft and might give Yahoo a fighting chance to go alone.  If the Opensocial deal was in the works prior to Microsoft then that is a great sign for Yahoo – it shows that they are going open.

I’m sure this will be hot on techmeme tomorrow.

Yahoo Stalled: No Wind in Their Sails? Google isn’t stalled. What’s the Problem? New CTO? January 30, 2008

Posted by John in Technology.
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Last year Jerry Yang took over as ‘Captain’ Yahoo but their ship is stalled.  Where are those new ‘sails’ to capture the new winds that are clearly blowing Google and Facebook’s way?  Yahoo needs to change the game.  Where’s the competive strategy?  Where the “Eye of the Tiger” attitude? 

Businessweek had the best analysis on Yahoo’s situation around the recent layoff and future prospects for success.  Display advertising is feeling the pre-recession jitters but not search (or ecommerc) advertising.  Yahoo keeps losing ground in search to Google.  According to Nielsen Online‘s numbers, usually the most conservative measure of the market, Google’s share of searches in December was 56.3% to Yahoo’s 17.7%, and Google got 70% more searches per searcher than Yahoo.

Yahoo needs new products and fast.  Jerry Yang says they are focused on investments on new initiatives.  As Yang’s vow to keep spending on some initiatives indicates, Yahoo’s hope remains coming up with new services that catch people’s imagination as Google, MySpace (NWS), Facebook, and other sites have.

I’ve been predicting a Yahoo comeback and openness for sometime.  Look for Yahoo to join opensocial and compete in the web 2.0 infrastructure. 

New CTO?  What does it Mean:

Silver Lining in new CTO hire:  One promising sign from their new hire, Ari Balogh, is that he’s an infrastructure guy.   He knows how to deal with scale and product rollouts that are managed service based.  What does this mean?  Yahoo could develop (fast) a significant position against both Google and Microsoft Live if Ari Balogh and team can integrate services and leverage user data for new products – a kind of “Mega Mashup” product strategy.  The portal model is dying and advertisers are voting.   

Also look for possible Data as a Service product set.    Yahoo has so many possibilities but they need to pick a few and go with it.   Yahoo has all the ‘raw materials’ and the audience to roll out ‘instant’ killer products. 

For Yahoo to succeed it’s all about competitive strategy.  Can’t wait to see how they execute their plan. 

Yahoo Please Join OpenSocial: Hey Jerry Yang – Go Social and Get Open Now; It’s all Jelly January 14, 2008

Posted by John in Technology.
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Jerry:  It’s time to join Open Social.  Now is the time to change the game.  

I’ve been posting a lot on Yahoo recently first on Yahoo at CES and then on their stock performance.  I believe that Yahoo can be a big player in web 2.0 and social networks.  Yahoo can be competitive and might just have the answer in being the next Google-like performing company.  Specifically, Yahoo has already helped pioneer RSS and widgets (with Konfabulator).  Now it’s time for Yahoo to join open social.  Yahoo has the assets to make a difference in web 2.0.

The three things that I would do right now if I were Yahoo:

1) Join OpenSocial immediately – like tomorrow

2) Do a major stock repurchase – joining OpenSocial and going open will cause some stock performance in the short term so it’s no better a time to do a stock buyback. Show everyone you’re in it for the long haul.  Don’t sell.

3) Port all your products to be web 2.0 enabled including social networking environments and data portability.

These three things can propell Yahoo to the front of the line in term of being competitive while delivering user value.   

My prediction:  Yahoo will join OpenSocial.  By joining OpenSocial Yahoo can take advantage of their huge subscribe base, lead the open data movement, and leverage the user behavior trend in social networking and widgets.

It’s the bread and jelly that Yahoo needs. It already has the peanut butter. 

Jerry Yang took over as CEO this past June and announced it here on his blog.

Facebook Beacon: Kara is the Pot Calling the Kettle January 14, 2008

Posted by John in Technology.
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In the 60 minutes interveiw of Facebook’s founder Mark Zuckerberg (which I thought was a puff piece) Kara Swisher is highlighted as the expert in Facebook.  Kara deserves to be on there because she has been following Facebook hard for a while.  I like Kara and read her blog.  Kara is a pro journalist, but I fell off my chair at the end of the interview on her comment on Facebook’s beacon product.  I have to call foul on this one Kara. 

Kara: I respectfully disagree with you.  First, I think that you’re wrong on your take on beacon.  You said Facebook was wrong for doing it and not explaining it.  Then you go on to basically question their judgement.  I disagree with you.  Beacon is a good thing for Facebook and for users.  I think that Facebook rolled it out the wrong way, but it was a good move for Facebook.  It’s a competitive advantage weapon for Facebook and a possible innovation lever for their user experience (and for future monetization).   Secondly, you have a relationship Google and know that Google practices the same techniques as Beacon (can we talk about gmail, data centers and toolbar among other similar data driven innovations).  By your logic Google is wrong and has bad judgement.   Competing on the value of data extraction is precisely what Google built their brand on and it is what drives their ad monetization business. 

Both Google and Facebook derive their products core value propositions from the aggregation and knowledge about data and data relationships. 

Here is the 60 minutes interview. Note: Bill Gates was 17 when he started Microsoft.

Two Parts: 

Part I

Part II

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