Apple has Twitter and Microsoft has Facebook but Google has YouTube.
Adam Rifkin stashed this in @lizgannes
Liz Gannes has a fine article about Apple choosing Twitter for identity in iOS 5.
In a world with a strong Microsoft Facebook alliance this move has created a kind of balance.
And it made me wonder where Google is. In theory they could partner with the long tail for public identity (LinkedIn, Tumblr, etc., and maybe one day Twitter too) while also continuing to be best-of-breed for private identity (Gmail).
Google's real wildcard is YouTube. If Google gave the Web a good reason to use our YouTube accounts as our public identities for some actions -- especially when sharing videos -- that might actually be quite useful for other things too such as sharing links, comments, and pictures.
While we're on the subject, bookmarks are not follows. Mark Suster cites two reasons why people favorite things on Twitter: 90% for "read later" (bookmark), 5% for "like" (follow), and 5% for "both". In that article Josh Elman also points out that some people do it for social validation -- to give props to the author.
Could YouTube become a great distribution network on par with Facebook and Twitter for more than just sharing videos? Perhaps. But if they do so, they should make the channel public (like Twitter) not private (like Gmail).
I'm not sure YouTube would be a good choice as an identity source, as unlike on Twitter and Facebook, people tend to be anonymous/hide their identity (mostly so they can flame other people in the comments). It's funny because between Gmail and YouTube Google would appear to have access to millions of identities, but neither are really "public" in the sense of Twitter/FB.
What's interesting about that is that our Facebook identities are not really public identities, since most people only share links, pictures, and comments with their friends.
I think people assume Facebook is fairly public. We're seeing a decent percentage of users who have multiple Facebook accounts - a public facing one and a miss spelled private one.
In direct violation of FB's terms of service! Only one account per user, real names only please :)
One note on Mark Suster's article: I see here is that he's using his personal set of followers to represent Twitter users as a whole.
The two things I've studied on Twitter have been users of Spaz (my client on Desktop and webOS), and client posting usage. In both cases, what I repeatedly discovered that my personal circle of followers was not in any way representative of users as a whole.
That doesn't mean he's wrong -- just that what he presents doesn't mean anything outside his social circle.
There's definitely some sample bias going on, since my use of Favorites is entirely for giving props as Josh Elman suggests.
I'm guessing that other Twitter users also employ Favorites to give props to others, because now Twitter lets us get email notifications whenever someone Favorites a tweet of ours.
Yeah, but email as a feedback mechanism is fairly flawed. If favorites were more like Facebook likes or instagram likes where the notification occurs in the network I think it would drive usage as a props tool.
Amit, you make a good point, but I would be surprised if a notifications console isn't on Twitter's roadmap.
From personal experience, I know that there's a lot of questions about myself or situations that I feel like I have to keep re-explaining, and it'd be nice to just tell someone when they ask "Hold on, here's my answer!" and then have them watch/listen to the YouTube video response. This seems a little impersonal, but logically so do some of the modern social interactions that we've managed to acclimate to these days (the handwritten letter is a lost art), so if a critical mass of people were doing it, I'm sure it'd become a social norm.
To your point, YouTube does seem to encourage video responses: http://www.google.com/support/youtube/bin/answer.py?answer=57931
I know, and occasionally the video responses are substantially better than the original video itself! http://digitallife.today.com/_news/2011/03/18/6294886-ucla-students-asians-rant-ignites-youtube-responses
Furthermore, YouTube could build a very engaging network for sharing videos on, and have follows and feeds of its own.
I think YouTube's feed would be as addictive as the Facebook and Twitter feeds for me if there was regularly fresh content there that cues off my interests.
When I was there, it definitely seemed like there was a small but focal community network that was doing exactly what you're describing.
As far as the feed goes, kind of like Netflix is supposed to show you new stuff that you're going to like based on what you've previously liked?
Liz, yes, and that feed could also use who you're following to give better results.
I've been thinking about this, and I think there's one main hurdle to getting something like this going: most people are still relatively camera-shy. We're at the point where most of us are comfortable with getting photographed, but getting recorded on film still feels weird for some reason, or at least it does for me. I'm going to be thinking more about why being photographed feels normal to the point where we want to have our picture taken, and how it differs from the socialization around being caught on camera.
Liz, the 106 Miles infomercial is so professionally edited. Wow!
And I concur that we're all still getting used to the camera. Memo to self: don't look to the side when talking to the camera. ;)
I'm glad you liked the video, Adam! Yaro is very good at what he does :)
I think you articulated what 106 Miles is about and why people should come, and as far as getting used to the camera, you know what they say, practice makes perfect. So we should get you more interviews!
I used Twitter for all my 3rd party site identities.
Why is that?
I trust Twitter more than Facebook. It's probably irrational, but something something about twitter making you like people you've never met.....
Now that I think about it, I signed up with PW using Twitter. All other sites I typically use my gmail account which forwards to my google apps domain account with custom passwords per site.