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MySpace releases API for Data Availability

News Corp.'s social network has said the code for its data portability project, which lets external Web sites' users import their MySpace credentials, will go live later on Thursday.

MySpace's Data Availability logo.

MySpace is set to release on Thursday the application programming interface (API) for Data Availability, a developer project that the News Corp.-owned social network announced in early May. Through Data Availability, participating social sites can let users synchronize accounts with MySpace profiles, importing public profile data like photos, interests, and friend lists.

Data Availability's formal launch partners are Yahoo, eBay, Twitter, and News Corp.'s Photobucket, but with the release of the API, any third-party site can have access to it. Authentication is handled through the OAUTH open standard, and controls have been configured so that a high level of coding expertise is not required.

"Our users spend hours updating and making changes to their profiles, uploading content, and building friend relationships," a post on the MySpace developer blog explained. "With your help that data can now be available to MySpace users no matter where they go on the Internet."

But MySpace's project isn't the only one of its kind: rival Facebook has extended its existing API to encompass data portability in the form of "Facebook Connect," and Google has a new project called Friend Connect designed to bring social credentials to otherwise non-social Web sites.