The demand web

Saturday, November 27. 2010
Comments

I read a blog entry this morning entitled "The unbearable lameness of web 2.0" (scroll down for the English version).

In his blog entry Kris Köhntopp states how he's not satisfied with the status quo, and of course that he said it all before — in a nutshell, he wants a social networking standard which is adhered to across all platforms, e.g. Twitter, Facebook and whatever else there is in between.

This standard includes things like:

  • a better like/friend/subscribe model
  • auto-classification of contacts into interest groups (basically diaspora's aspect feature in automatic)
  • aggregating and analysis of shared items in your own stream and the stream of your friends/followers
  • providing sources (e.g. to be able to find the origin of a shared item vs. seeing it shared 20 times in your stream)
  • … and language detection (and possibly translation)

I hope I got it all right (in a nutshell, of course).

Fundamental problems

The blog entry itself and the comments on his blog entry suggest how trivial and easy these features are, so I'm wondering why exactly no one implemented those yet?

Well, let me try to answer that.

Trivial?

These problems are not trivial and actually require a little more thought ("Googledenk", as Kris put it). I know there are services already that implement some of these features, but who knows apparently it's not that easy after all — but feel free to prove me wrong.

The average user

These problems are also not average user problems.

Yeah, there might be 10,000 or maybe even a 100,000 people on Facebook who have these problems, but not 50,000,000. Facebook being slightly more business oriented than the average "go build it for me" social media blogger, will build a feature for 50,000,000 first before it caters to the problems of those maybe 100,000 power users.

Power users are not their target audience. Mom and dad type of people are.

Given that there are indeed services that implement these features (or at least some of them) and their general lack of traction, kind of supports my argument as well. Apparently, this is something not too many people need.

A Standard!

Does anyone remember how well OpenSocial worked out? Good luck with that.

Can someone, please?

To all those people are pissed at diaspora because it's not what they thought it would be like.

Get a grip and contribute for f's sake.

If you want something to happen, maybe you just have to go further than to your blog to bitch about it. It's really easy to rant on Twitter or your blog (see this post for example :-)), but GTD — that's the hard part.

Playground

Last but not least people forget that when they get into social networking they have no rights.

Of course in some countries you may have a right to your data, but that's basically it.

There is no given right to access a platform, no right to certain features or how they are designed and there sure as hell is no right to any kind of API. Facebook, Twitter and StudiVZ — they all allow users to come play. There's nothing for a user to demand.

Fin

My point of view. If you beg to differ, go build it.