Googles launched OpenSocial this week. OpenSocial is a content sharing standard that allows two primary capabilities:
3rd Party Embedded Content
Popular websites like LinkedIn and MySpace were previously limited to what their technology teams could create. With OpenSocial, these site no longer have to develop all the information tools on their site. By embracing the standard, popular websites can allow for any web information tools to be added to their site; some examples have already been created such as calendar sharing, event organization and music listening.
Content Syndication Standard
The corollary to 3rd party content integration is that OpenSocial allows for websites to re-published their content and information tools. OpenSocial boasts 250MM users through its current partners, while that is a great jumpstart, the effect of a content sharing standard is far reaching and has substantial long-term implications. By embracing the syndication standard, however, you have in effect limited the possible growth of your own website (see the end of new social neworks).
Easy Use and Implementation
While OpenSocial will commoditize the social networks, we still embrace how Google gives away the number one position.