Keeping users locked in a specific social community is a dominant strategy. The opposite would be open networks where people could easily move between networks.
Should social networks be more open? Do traditional users (like me) care enough that our data is controlled by the social communities, like Facebook, MySpace and a Small World (Speaker SIME06)? For those of you who feel locked-in, and who want to take your identity wherever you like, Tariq Krim of Netvibes (Speaker SIME06) is offering a new Facebook Widget. It allows users to access their Facebook info on Netvibes (open system).
Is this discussion important? Mark Canter of PeopleAggregator argues that "History will prove that by freeing the end-user’s data, a distributed mesh of inter-connecting social networks and blogging platforms will create an ecosystem in which ALL software vendors and plaforms can participate in - equally". Read Mark's excellent blog entry: "The Chess game of social networking".
What do you think?
(Thanks to Jockum Hultén, Snowball Captial for the theme).