So now it's joining the DataPortability Workgroup:
While Duncan would tell you that this is a huge step forward for Facebook's strategy and that they're changing their tune, I would have to amend that statement a bit. I think that the fact that Facebook is willing to join the workgroup says three things:
1) They believe that they have enough momentum to continue growing their user base. At a size of ~60mm today, I bet that they're of the opinion that the chances of any network smaller than them catching up any time soon due to DataPortability is slim to none.
2) Moreover, they probably believe that given the traction that their application strategy has provided them with developers, dataportability will actually allow them to further eat into MySpace's lead
3) As a member of the workgroup, they can slow down the process as they see fit from the inside, putting up meaningful barriers to any suggestions around portability (say, the ability for a user to truly shift their data to a new network that might supplant Facebook as their primary network) that could negatively impact Facebook.
Call me a skeptic, but I think that Facebook's proven to be a savvy innovator with a pretty solid grasp of timing and damage control/PR communications.
For those of you who don't understand WTF this post about, shoot me a note in the comments and I'll reach out to you individually. It'll help me create a better post about this topic in the near future.