MySpace introduces ‘plug and play’ profiles


9 May 2008

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The web really begins to get social when a user can take their online profile and use it on any other site they wish.

MySpace is stepping up with the Data Availability project, which allows users to take their personal profile data and plug it into other social networking sites.

So far Yahoo!, eBay, Twitter and Photobucket (also owned by News Corporation) have come on board and this feature will be rolling out in the next few weeks.

“The walls around the garden are coming down – the implementation of Data Availability injects a new layer of social activity and creates a more dynamic internet,” said MySpace co-founder and CEO, Chris DeWolfe.

“We, alongside our Data Availability launch partners, are pioneering a new way for the global community to integrate their social experiences web-wide.”

What this means is that MySpace users can share data and content including publicly available, basic profile information, photos, videos, and even their friend networks.

Popular microblogging service Twitter is excited about the venture: “We’re still exploring all the cool stuff we’ll be able to do with this Data Availability. We’ll keep you posted as we take advantage to make improvements to Twitter features and functionality,” said Twitter co-founder, Biz Stone.

This is not the first initiative by the big social sites to achieve a more integrated, social web. The OpenSocial Foundation, started by Google, while not about sharing user data does allow for widget sharing so that programmers can create applications that will sit as easily on iGoogle as they will on MySpace or Bebo.

OpenID is more of an initiative that will benefit the user and is an independent foundation with board members including Yahoo!, Microsoft, IBM, Google and VeriSign. The purpose of OpenID is one identity for many sites.

While OpenID and OpenSocial are making progress, the motivation and money behind MySpace with Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp will push the Data Availability project.

By Marie Boran