MySpace has joined up with Google for the launch of its OpenSocial platform, which aims to create a common platform for developers to create applications for social networks.

Bebo also joined in with OpenSocial yesterday, while LinkedIn, XING, Friendster and Orkut are already on board. The big question is whether Facebook will decide to join Google's initiative.

CEO Eric Schmidt told the press that Google has been working with MySpace in secret on the project for the past year, adding that  'everyone is invited to join' suggesting that Facebook is welcome to join OpenSocial.

Hitwise has a chart showing the market share of the sites signed up for OpenSocial, compared with Facebook:


According to TechCrunch, a Facebook spokesperson says the company has not been approached by Google yet, though they are believed to be talking about OpenSocial today.

Facebook will eventually join in, according to Arrington:

"My bet is that they join. Because suddenly Facebook is being painted as the closed outsider while everyone else is allowing the use of non proprietary coding platforms."

Mashable echoes this view:

"With more than 40m users and a somewhat established platform, Facebook will continue to be attractive for developers, but with all of the big players joining Google/MySpace for OpenSocial, staying out might be a big mistake."

MySpace's Chris DeWolfe said that the new platform would create a 'de facto standard' for the development of applications for social networks:

"We really think the next level of innovation is going to be from deeper application integration."

MySpace had followed Facebook's lead earlier this month in announcing that it too would open up to developers, though those efforts will now be directed to OpenSocial.

Related stories:
Facebook gets into bed with Microsoft
Life without MySpace

Graham Charlton

Published 2 November, 2007 by Graham Charlton

Graham Charlton is the former Editor-in-Chief at Econsultancy. Follow him on Twitter or connect via Linkedin or Google+

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