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Saturday, November 25, 2006

I was wrong about Spokeo

Looks like I was wrong when I implied that Spokeo might have been first in developing a way for users to manage all their social networking profiles and friends in one place. The protean company Dapper has a tool called Snag that does about the same thing although it doesn't look like friends can be added manually or as many networks are supported. AJAX is liberally used, and the site design is a lot better than Spokeo's.


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Reader Comments:

This is nice. However, data privacy might be a concern. Since information like private messages are transferred and stored on third-party servers, there might be some privacy violations. I think Snag should stick with synchronizing public information, like Google News.

I agree with Harry that both these sites seem to violate the terms and conditions of the social networks they are aggregating from. It's only a matter of time when both snag and spokeo will be hearing from the legal dept. of Myspace, et al.

It might be a TOS violation, but in the end, users are in charge. They provide the content so locking-in data that they've created is likely to create a backlash.

I think a different way of looking at it is the example of the WayBack Machine, which archives webpages while respecting robots.txt files. I've argued before that the equivalent of robots.txt should be implemented for social networking sites in regard to Wink's social networking search.

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