socially ever after

remember that hans christian anderson story about the social networking site that came first?

oh come on, yeah you do…. the social networking app that came first, but it didn’t listen to what people wanted, and it wouldn’t let them keep profiles for anything other than people? like that insanely wittty “san francisco” profile that you added because it was a hilarious motherfucker, that then one day mysteriously disappeared, and no more witty san francisco for you.

then there’s the part of the story where the other social networking app comes next. the one that’s kinda ugly and dumb, but it knows well enough to let profiles like “san francisco” stay up, and in fact, encourages bands to create profiles and develop communication and community with their fans that way.

and the story tells of how it was bands that turned the tide from friendster to myspace.

well, i’m barely even on facebook, and i have no idea if san francisco has a profile there or if it’s anywhere near as clever as it was on friendster, but i couldn’t help but notice a very similar story taking place once again where what one social network app won’t tolerate in its clique becomes something that another wholly embraces.

the Facebook Platform, which goes live today, doesn’t just mean that users now have acess to lots of cool new applications within Facebook, but belies a strategy that’s essentially “anti-myspace“:

“While MySpace frets over third party widgets, alternatively shutting them down or acquiring them, Facebook is now opening up its core functions to all outside developers.”

who knows if that will actually be enough to turn the tide again, but either way, the oversight of a dominating sns going about systematically excluding something from its network has been shown before to open up the opportunity for another one to come along and best it by the sheer act of inclusion.

and most of hans christian anderson’s stories do end pretty much the same.


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