"Membership and preferences standards are a hot topic among independent developers, because of Microsoft’s Passport, which is in rapid deployment now. Developers are now faced with a choice — support Microsoft’s membership system, and thereby feed customers to them, or develop an open, clonable and decentralized system, so that membership is a competitive space, not owned by one or two large companies."
Dave Winer wants to "open a discussion with everyone who has an interest in this functionality [distributed membership] so there’s a chance of a unified and inclusive approach."
Ok, Microsoft has its own agenda with Hailstorm, while others might quite legitimately come with a competing open profile clearinghouse. But where are the corporate clients that want to relinquish "ownership" of customer data? With all the privacy issues that constantly come up, it’s obviously already hard enough to make them understand this data belongs to the people (as granular bits, I have no problem with aggregates).
Now, to give control of valuable data to third-parties? Over their dead bodies! Web-wide user basic authentification might work (and the account aggregation guys are busy working on that), but anything involving marketing profiling and consumer behavior looks very sensitive to share. So I have this very simple question: which site operators want to delegate rich profile management, to Microsoft or whoever else?
On a side note, it’s funny to see Microsoft pitch single sign-on again, as it was one of the first compelling features of the BackOffice server family (sign-on on an NT domain works with Exchange, SQL Server and the whole suite).
11/06/01 update: The End Of Anonymous Surfing?
11/09/01 update: Andre Durand (Jabber’s founder): P2P and Identity Management.