Closer to Open Social Networks? Google and Facebook Join the DataPortability Work Group

From Catherine Howell via Educause. The possible future of the internet?

Ben Metcalfe, the DataPortability founder, has just announced that Facebook along with Google have now joined the DataPortability Workgroup.

Given that Google and Facebook are two of the biggest holders of social and personal information on the internet (Amazon are probably 3rd) this means we could see a kick start towards users being able to share content freely across social networking sites. If a standard does emerge it is likely that future PLE/MLEs will also accommodate them. So we could be looking at students arriving at university and being able to port elements of existing personal data into the MLE (say from a social network site) and then at the end of their degree export the data into another network (possibly even to another institution MLE). So the user may have a single personal dataset throughout their career / life to which they add / remove elements as they continue to learn. the data will be continually modified to reflect their life long learning. Of course a pessimistic view is that such rich data will be heaven for targeted online advertising.

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