Victus Spiritus


Social Web Flow that Supports Open Real Time Updates

19 Apr 2010

Last week I made the move from originating status updates on Twitter, to a remote system that supports Pubsubhubbub and other open formats. The updates can then flow to Twitter while enabling easy remote access using web standards as opposed to a single (restricted) API. Current popular social media systems are centralized networks that tax attention, there's no federation and little end user controI of outbound distribution or data portabilitiy. Social network corporations give lip service to open standards with read write protocols, but have chosen thus far to ignore access by real time web standards. While we may opt in to exchanging our attention to see friends or influencers messages on a specific platform (Gmail), the underlying protocol is open. We can choose Microsoft hotmail or Yahoo mail or host our own server and still send and receive email.

Creating updates on gatekeeper networks isn't conducive to a distributed open social web, which is the community I'm working to enrich and support. When companies embrace web standards it makes downstream development and processing much easier, and promotes content distribution without restricted flow or corporate bottle necking, as well as competition to create the best tool set to support that format. Ideally, businesses charge for advanced tools and utilities that empower users, not hold shared messages ransom.

For now I've narrowed my choices down to Google Buzz and, which both support easy real time access to feeds. Alternatively once Robin (a Rails open source implementation of ostatus) becomes a little more user friendly I'll likely host a server or go with Tyler's server (it's in very early testing). Having choices about distribution channels for social messages is a wonderful thing.