Closed Creates Hype

Jason Kottke notes that Facebook is AOL 2.0. Valleywag notes that both are closed. Scott Heiferman’s quote is gold

While at Sony in 1994, I was sent to Virginia to learn how to build a Sony “app” on AOL (the #3 online service, behind Compuserve & Prodigy at the time) using AOL’s proprietary “rainman” platform.

Fast forward to Facebook 2007 and see similarities: If you want access to their big base of users, develop something in their proprietary language for their people who live in their walled garden.

I had wondered when Facebook came up with its platform news, whether it intended to be an Internet on Internet. Let me be accurate – a Closed Internet on the Open One. Is that good? I personally feel like seeing a new Microsoft. Of course I am a member of Facebook, but I am sure whether out of choice or compulsion. It is closed and walled!

So is iPhone. Not only closed, but secretive. Robert Scoble says that secrecy gets fantastic PR and probably a lot of hype too. Facebook is good and Facebook users are happy, but like Kottke says, should everyone else be happy about it? Closed sure creates hype, but I want to learn more, would it be able to sustain it?

Discussion [Participate or Link]

  1. OpenMoko - The iPhone Antidote | iface thoughts said:

    […] recent times, secrecy has created hype, but giving more control to users has served longer. OpenMoko phones can boast of features […]

  2. Keron Alfred said:

    I am confused by the term Closed being used to describe Facebook. If I am not mistaken, Facebook has published their APIs, FQL (Facebook Query Language) and other instructions to access their Platfrom and the Facebook Database.

    Why would you describe Facebook as closed or walled, when they have made public the tools to develop on Facebook’s Platform?

  3. Abhijit Nadgouda said:

    Keron, Facebook is walled because you can only add to it, you cannot take anything out of it. You have to use their proprietary platform to talk to them, as against an open API, say like Twitter. If you want to provide additional facilities to their users, you have to live within their walls, not outside on the Internet.

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Abhijit Nadgouda
iface Consulting
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