Case for business

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How do federated social web tools help businesses?

(NOTE: as a starting point i pastes the same points as for individuals, but in a different order -Michiel)

  • Depend on open technology - you depend on the tools you use, but not on the specific businesses developing those tools. Any competitor can at any point take over the development of a specific tool (although they may have to change its name), keeping you in control of your data and what you can do with it.
  • Jurisdiction over your data - if for instance you choose a European provider, then you are data is safe from government peeking by the Patriot Act. Even if you live in the USA, then in case you run a federated social web server in your own building, the fourth amendment applies (TODO: check if this is also true for office buildings or only for houses), and third parties (including big companies and governments) need either your explicit permission, or a police warrant before they are allowed to peek at your data
  • Choose where your data is - if at any point you are unhappy with the server that stores your data, then you can switch providers
  • Choose tools and features - if at any point you are unhappy with the application features you have, then you can switch providers too
  • Free market consumer rights - given the ease with which you can switch, providers are forced to make the customer King to stay in business
  • I use my tool, you use yours - if some of the people you want to communicate with happen to use other tools than you, then thanks to the federated social web, you will still be able to interact. There are no walls that lock conversations to tools
  • Robustness - if at any point there is a technical failure or a provider goes out of business, then you can switch providers
  • Your data in one place - if you want to use more than one tool in your online social life, then you can choose a provider who offers all the tools you need, and have your data in one place, always working with your one same contacts list, one same calendar, and same news stream, regardless of which tool you are using with it
  • Vendor Relationship Management (VRM) - The goal of VRM [1] is to empower individuals to manage their relationships with businesses. There is a clear overlap between VRM and FSW, because in both visions, individual control over identity and personal data is a key aspect. One could imagine both individuals and business to have identities on the FSW, then each party could control "their" end of the relationship, resulting in benefits for both.