Today sees another a huge step forward for the social networking world by enabling sharing of contacts and friends lists BETWEEN different social networks - yet in a safe and secure way that firmly gives users the choice of how to use and control their information.
In a move that further demonstrates Microsoft's commitment to user-centric data portability, Microsoft has partnered with some of the world's top social networks to make data portability for contacts a reality.
Earlier this month at MIX08, Microsoft announced the release of the Windows Live Contacts API, which web developers can use to enable their users to transfer and share their Windows Live Contacts in a safe and secure way. Starting today, Microsoft is working with Facebook, Bebo, Hi5, Tagged and LinkedIn to exchange functionally-similar Contacts APIs, allowing all partners to create a safe, secure two-way street for users to move their relationships between our respective services.
Along with these collaborations, Microsoft is introducing a new web site at www.Invite2Messenger.net that people can visit to invite their friends from our partner social networks to join their Windows Live Messenger contact list.
For quite some time now, Microsoft has been making investments in the pursuit of data portability to put users at the center of their online experience, while at the same time being thoughtful about balancing user security and privacy with the experience. Today’s announcement is another step in that direction.
More details about this announcement, and the principles that underlie it, can be found on this blog posting on dev.live.com by John Richards.
Update: Angus Logan provides a detailed look at how the sharing experience works for the first two implementation - Facebook and Bebo, including some great screenshots.
Two way contact APIs with the top Social Networks and Windows Live - invite to WL from Facebook; invite to Bebo or facebook from Windows Live - SAFELY!
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