Interoperability through open data, Google and Facebook style

Google is showing that lock-in isn't a requirement for making lots of money.

Google and Facebook are joining ranks on DataPortability Workgroup. As the ReadWriteWeb put it, "Good bye customer lock-in, hello to new privacy challenges." While the process of opening up data may well take a long time, it's instructive that the web is doing what the offline software industry has thought tantamount to corporate suicide: Opening up.

Data has been the web's lock-in point, as Tim O'Reilly, in particular, has championed. Some believe this is the only way to make a buck: Remove customer options such that they're forced to continue doing business with a vendor.

I'm hopeful that Google, which has offered public support for open data policies before, will follow through on this. We don't need more of the same old way of doing business.

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