Workshop on Future of Social Networking - Day 1

15 Jan 2009

Day 2 (Jan 16)

Agenda - Workshop home page


<scribe> Scribe: Francois, Karl, Harry, Simon

<scribe> ScribeNick: scribe

Date: 15 January 2009

Welcome and Introductions

<link> Christine Perey's slides

<link> Dominique Hazael-Massieux's slides

Appropriate Architectures for Social Networking

Distributed Social Networking / Semantic Web and Data Mining

<link> Topic introduction

The Social Web: Small Businesses / Big Solutions, by Timothée Anglade, AF83

<link> Tim's slides

Changed a bit the title of the paper.

We need to worry about sustainability. Make sure that the outcome of the workshop does not go to waste.

Distributed social networking. Questions. What do we do? What do we need?

We do not need yet another authentication stuff. Let's focus on the two main ones: OpenID, OAUth. They came from the need for privacy and trust. Should people care? Yes. Do they care? No.

Being business-friendly is a double-edged sword. Users don't care so "we" (businesses) don't care.

There was a big Twitter phishing problem a couple of weeks ago, and suddenly, people start to care.

That's one reason to drive, but it's not enough. Backup plan:

- step 1: show the money that may be made by relying on OpenID and so on

- step 2: show the money

- step 3: show the money

You need to tell businesses that there is a financial interest, that business models do exist.

Data portability. Sounds a bit like a religious thing, but it's also money. Why? It relies on the notion of liquidity. In economics, it's the capacity to transform money from one form to one other (checks to money). I want to be able to convert my Facebook pictures to Flickr pictures. I don't want to have to use all the hooks I need to today.

What's in them for the business? Free market. And more than that. Free *niche* markets. Where you can focus on a tiny little part of the huge pie. Example: event-driven businesses. Facebook tells me I missed a birthday, that there's a party tonight. It means more gifts may be bought. Not much, but that's still money.

What can we liquidify? Authentication. Done (OpenID). Authorization. Done as well. Assets (your pictures, music, ...). That's the main thing that is missing right now. But that's not the only one. Micropayments cannot be done easily. Really something I want. Enables not only B2B. There was an old W3C draft on Micro-payments Transport Protocol. Seems to have disappeared.

Liquidity is one way to ensure that we can create a cool future.


Henry Story: One thing missing here is the push from the network. It's what make the thing stand. You want the long tail in there to make it work.

Managing Social Communications Identities, by José M. Gonzalez, Telefonica

<link> Slides

Telco services were to produce "conversational experiences" (Voice, Text, video calls). Centered on conversation. Since users are moving to social networks, telco operators need to provide services that follow this trend.

Online social networks improve the communication experiene. From the operator's point of view, it's a win as well, because it helps profile users, improves user experience and thus increases the network's use, and it provides an incredible way to gather users' feedback. Operators can follow users' needs through twitter messages, blogs posts, and so on.

We need to know the users identities. We can expect that friends on Facebook are real friends in real life. Different social identities represent me. I may have different privacy issues. Communication identities on the other hand need to be a unique number (phone number or URI). Users usually have only one single communication identity, and an important point here is that privacy is required by *law*.

To offer social communications services, a user either needs to know the communication identity of the person he wants to connect with, or one of the social identities. In the second case, the link between the social identity and the communication identity is kept private by the network.

We created a social broker which is the only identity manager that knows how to link between social identities and communication identities. Through interfaces, this enables the inter-connection of various social networks.

In terms of privacy, two possibilities through the exchange of tokens and authentication requests between the operator network and the social network.

We did it. It works. "Movistar contacta" is a Facebook app that allows you to send text or trigger a call to some other user.


Karl: This doesn't solve the privacy issue. The privacy issue is now the identity broker. Hope we can discuss the "why" later on.

Q: Who pays?

A: No one knows for the time being. Telefonica, here, is selling a "brand".

Leveraging social data with semantics, by Fabien Gandon, INRIA

<link> Slides

We're discovering sociograms. We want to know who the brokers are ("betweenness").

There is one thing interesting in the One Web architecture. Basically you have two choices: XML Infoset, or RDF set. Using RDF, you activate a different branch to play with the graph.

Two types of graph: social network analysis, and semantic web graph. We know how to do things with both of them: compute degree of acquaintance in the first case, compute inferences in the second case.

What we'd like to do is to stick to RDF and leverage its capabilities to apply SNA algorithms. We need new standards, on social data. Example: I'd like to be able to compute at run-time the people that are close, but only from a professional's point of view. This could be done with a slight extension of SPARQL. We've extracted 2020 FOAF profiles from flickr, and run the computation of betweenness.

We're interesting into building a global social semantic graph. Other graphs are available and could be merged. FOAF + SKOS + SIOK. We've extracted bookmarks of users of delicious, and were looking at ways to merge labels together. It makes it possible to link users together who use the same labels.

Open issues: how does this scale? and of course security? Some industries stopped using delicious, because they were just giving away strategical information. Open your data + mobileOK = open your mobile Web! There is absolutely no incompabilities.

Some bridges already exist such as POWDER, use semantic web schemas. Works on vocabularies use semantic Web. Semantic Web applications already exist on mobile phones: DBPedia, i-MoCo.

ISICIL: how to make this interesting and available for corporate applications.


John_Kemp: You mentioned FOAF. Do you need the one true format, or could this scale well using different formats?

Fabien: No need for one ontogoly. Some technologies such as GRDDL allow you to provide mappings between formats.

Current Issues with Social Networks representations, by Peter Mika, Yahoo! Research

<link> Slides

We're focusing on web mining in our lab in Barcelona.

Some of you may have heard about Yahoo's SearchMonkey, based on semantic Web technologies, but not only. For this to work, you obviously need metadata. It's very hard to do it automatically. With more semantic, it's much easier. You need some form of data compatibility.

The Web is decentralized. We do have shared syntaxes which are pretty good (RDF, RDFa). We have API compatibility (OpenSocial), which are good as well although they may not be available for Jo the Blogger. We have authentication (OpenID, OAuth). We have incentives to participate.

We have some ideas on identity management, not exactly done, and out of scope of this talks.

But we have a huge vocabulary problem. It's not so much a technological problem, but a social issue. It cannot solve itself automatically.

People like microformats, because they're both chosing the syntax and the vocabulary as opposed to RDF/RDFa where it's a two-step process. The problem with microformat is that you cannot extend the vocabulary, at which point people start to move to RDFa. The important thing is that both are useful, and RDF has the advantage of being the base for a Lingua Franca, but we need vocabularies.

Main problems with vocabularies is that there's often a mismatch (e.g. birthday vs. age). People in general don't understand the differences between key concepts that underlie metadata. Sometimes you may also want to represent a value as multimedia content.


Karl: You made the opposition between doing it right and making it simple. What is right?

Peter: Difficult to say "right". Was referring to what technical experts think is needed (use of a URI instead of a value for instance).

Q: Jo the Blogger is your first public. And maybe it's more a question of the platform that he uses than his own knowledge.

Break out sessions

Distributed Social Networking

DKA: Question number one: Can a decentralized architecture be sustainable, profitable and usable?

That's an interesting important

PH: What is decentralized?

DKA asking where people are from. Handset vendors, operators, researchers, hardware vendors

DKA: I think the sustainable bit is interesting. Is a distributed architecture really what users want?

Blaine: Email used to be centralized. And failed this way. Now open, distributed.

DKA: ... and triggered a lot of spam. It was so distributed that there was no authentication barriers, no way to prevent spam.

Sam: Economics really need to be considered. Key enabler for things to happen.

SP: People want to share pictures, music, voice. That can't happen for technical reasons.

Henry: Every entreprise has a social network, but people don't use it because it's too small to have a network effect. They rather use Facebook. But you cannot take Facebook to inside the company. There's a whole new market over there.

Kemp: We already have a decentralized architecture in a way: the user manages tens of identities himself, move stuff from one network to the other. Can we make a better place?

Blaine: We have a fragment of the architecture. But I'm not sure we have a decentralized one.

Christine: We have silos today.

Henry: Rather than decentralization: distribution. You want every little piece to be linked together.

PH: Coming here as a newbie. What does "decentralization" mean? I put my FOAF profile somewhere and users can access it from other social networks?

Ori: On my own server, I could use services and have the same functionality as Facebook. No need to have one provider that handle millions of users at the same place.

Sam: We still rely on DNS to deliver content. URIs are not quite decentralized.

Miguel: If you distribute stuff, there is no real way to make money out of that.

Ori: Unless you have micro-payments. For the time being, there is no real business model for these big social networks.

Henry: If Facebook wants to sell micro-systems to e.g. companies, they need a decentralized architecture anyway.

Miguel: Anyone can code Facebook in a way.

Henry: talking about CIA, scribe missed that part/

Blaine: Wikipedia has a list of social networkd. There are around 60 regional social networks, with no real overlap because of that. Facebook is the global face that makes it possible for a user of one social network to reach another one in another one.

Kemp: Another analogy. scribe missed it

DKA: there are lots of corporate interest to make money flow. One valuable information is to be able to profile users, which could be used. Dan mentioning he's about to have a breast augmentation operation.

Kunshik: The number of users who join the networks used to be important. It's interesting to see that all the existing mechanisms are converging, with a bit of boot-strapping, to make them inter-work.

Claudio: the question is when and who does users pay? Do you pay to use the network, send a message to another network? Roaming costs?

Kemp: or maybe we may actually end up paying users because that's valuable information. That's a possibility.

DKA: Yahoo! created a service that lets you specify which site may access your location, and specify the precision you are willing to give them (country, city, street, exact position). Links to question 5: How can we allow users who may want to deliberately fragment their online identity to do so?

Kunshik: Two perspectives for identity: from the user who logs in and from the application that uses the information. It's an individual prerogative. I don't think there's a lot we can do here.

Sam: It's important to control the amount of information application have access to, and it's also important to control how they can associate information.

Blaine: For me, Facebook is equivalent to a chat room. Fragmented identity is even more important than privacy. The problem with fragmentation of course is when you want to create a bridge between two identities in some context. Fireeagle is federation stuff minus identity stuff. Fireeagle doesn't store identity.

Ori: When I posted on usenet 15 years ago, I had never imagined that information would still be there today. We have to think about 10 years in the future. If we fragment today, but if there's a way in the future to merge fragmented identities, then you can be sure that it will be done! If you have a GUID and give it to 20 different providers, you can be sure that, at a point in time, these providers will merge and exchange data.

Henry: This is just law of nature. In the end, truth comes out. It's a difficult job to have a mistress and not have your wife know anything about it.

Ori: Are you saying privacy is dead?

Henry: It's not absolute.

DKA: I wonder whether the Fireeagle architecture (no identity stored) is a good decentralization architecture? If I define policies on Facebook, I can then hold them responsible in case there's a problem.

Blaine: The Fireeagle architecture was designed so that, even if Yahoo! was being asked to provide information there would be no way to disclose the identity of the user.

SP: If we define profiles in different places, we would quickly run into conflicting ones when trying to interoperate between different networks.

Miguel: Idea: You would have a number of information sources (position, friends). On another level, you would have social networks that would link these information sources in a way. Linked data.

Henry: Linked data. A way to link data and control who sees the links.

Sam: are we talking about a real infrastructure or the lack of architecture?

DKA: We're talking about extending the concept in Fireeagle.

Kunshik: The key words here are policy, and selecting link. Users in control. Policy-based service on selective information.

Kemp: I have Apache on my mobile phone.

DKA: Why would you need that?

Ori: This way you can carry on you, physically, your elements, your policies, your GUIDs. Other people cannot prove who you are in that case.

DKA: OK, so you run your own infrastructure then.

Ori: Exactly.

Blaine: talking about centralization or not of privacy settings

Henry: User linked data. Access control. And you can do it.

DKA: Any social network, in order to survive, need to have APIs to survive.

Sam: Yes, but they want stuff in, but not let stuff go out.

Ori: What you can not do is link data.

Henry: If you take a look at LinkedIn. They are giving users a public URI.

Sam: talking about exporting contacts in Facebook and Windows Live Messenger

Ori: Do we need another protocol? I don't think so, we already have a bunch of them.

DKA: not so much about protocols, rather best practices.

Christine: Can we list the protocols that we want to use in this architecture?

Ori: OpenID, OAuth, RDF.

DKA: I worry about complexity. Going back to the Fireeagle example, I can figure out how to define my settings, but that may not be easy for everyone.

Kemp: Back to protocols. OpenID, OAuth, RDF are fine. But users talk in terms of social networks, formats. And they see a whole bunch of them.

Christine: LinkedData was one of them.

Blaine: In terms of protocols, XMPP is definitely worth considering. I agree with John that it's very complicated. It's difficult to educate users, and even difficult to have developers understand and implement things correctly. My grand-ma has a list of emails written on a sheet of paper. That's her address book. Some people have thousands of contacts, but that's just a tiny percentage of users. Addressability. Latency. Data agnosticity.

DKA: I can already see themes emerging for a W3C's Incubator Group.

Christine: something to add, Dom?

Dom: Something I'd like to hear: what do you think W3C should do in the area? Let us know if you would get involved, and so on.

DKA: asking who would be interested

Dom: Do send me an email: dom@w3.org.

Henry: I'd like to create a FOAF file.

Dom: I think that's a great idea, indeed.

Henry: I read the 70 position papers for this workshop. And I had to search information on authors all over the Web. I managed to locate around 60 people. I've got some of the information, but if people have FOAF files that we could link to, send me an email.

Dom: I'll give you the list of email addresses of the authors, and if people are interested on doing FOAF files, then let's do it.

Semantic Web and Data Mining

Privacy and Trust / Distributed Architectures and Business Models

<link> Topic introduction

Enabling Trust and Privacy on the Social Web, by Alexandre Passant, National University of Ireland, Galway


How trustworthy is data on the Web? Users should know where content comes from.

Privacy. Should everyone know that I'm attending a possible private corporate meeting with partners? The problem of identity fragmentation is hard to deal with. We need more fine-grained access rights to social data. These rights should evolve automatically.

Using FOAF and SIOC helps leverage things, makes it possible to link data together and gives you more power to control access to it. It also makes it possible to link to billions of RDF triples available out there (DBPedia).

iLOD on the iPhone.

Semantic Web technologies can be used to define rules, policies: "Forward any Skype call during business hours to my mobile phone if the caller proves he's from my LinkedIn network".

The technology stack already exists, but we have to use it and spread it.

We have some proposals for W3C work: A social Web Primer (Social Web Interest Group) focused on semantic web technologies and a trust and privacy incubator group.

Privacy and Trust / Distributed Architectures and Business Models

<link> Topic introduction

Enabling Trust and Privacy on the Social Web, by Alexandre Passant, National University of Ireland, Galway

How trustworthy is data on the Web? Users should know where content comes from.

Privacy. Should everyone know that I'm attending a possible private corporate meeting with partners? The problem of identity fragmentation is hard to deal with. We need more fine-grained access rights to social data. These rights should evolve automatically.

Using FOAF and SIOC helps leverage things, makes it possible to link data together and gives you more power to control access to it. It also makes it possible to link to billions of RDF triples available out there (DBPedia).

iLOD on the iPhone.

Semantic Web technologies can be used to define rules, policies: "Forward any Skype call during business hours to my mobile phone if the caller proves he's from my LinkedIn network".

The technology stack already exists, but we have to use it and spread it.

We have some proposals for W3C work: A social Web Primer (Social Web Interest Group) focused on semantic web technologies and a trust and privacy incubator group.


Q: Do you believe that users are willing to specify such policies?

A: I think that's a matter of user interface. Policies may be complicated, but may look simple for the end user.

Q: What kind of groups do you target with such policies?

Dom: Two points. How complex can policies be? And should users see these policies as such? Your presentation shows that we have the tools.

Towards an OpenID-based solution to the Social Network Interoperability problem, by Davide Palsimano, Asemantics

Problem statement: How to create, manage and use the information contained in the users own social graph in an independent manner?

It seems that the "walled garden" approach is still the rule, with APIs as the only way to expose, and interlink data.

OpenID is the hammer that makes it possible to break the walls.

We're trying to develop a framework, a social network aggregator Java engine: Gobal Social Platform (GSP). It's an hybrid wrapper to the different social networks. Classes that extend a base "Socialet" class, servlet equivalents that process requests and generate responses. The solution is hybrid, because information that does not fit in the relational model needs to be stored as RDF triples.

What's the difference between this approach and the recent Facebook Connect? Well, our solution is intended to work across silos.


Q: 200-300 social networks. How many adapters does that give?

A: We'll provide abstract classes. Any skilled developer can easily create a Converter.

Q: Why would silos provide such an open API?

A: Yes. The REST API is our requirement. There's a need.

Q: Maybe we're using different networks to artificially create different silos. Why do users use different networks?

A: I think different social networks try to dig a vertical, to focus on something in particular that they do well.

A Telecom Italia view on the future of Social networking, by Claudio Venezia, Telecom Italia

<link> slides


This is one of the views within Telecom Italia.

Social networks are "low cost" strong human attention aggregators, and powerful value generators. The costs of deployment for operators is relatively small since they already have their subsribers database to start with, with an infrastructure to manage users' profiles.

Changing the attitude is critical. Companies think they "own" customers. Social Networking participants are not mere potential costumers.

Revenue streams drivers: access, communication, premium features, transactions, contribution to a cause.

The attitude of users on e-shops is the same as in a physical shop: users come in, take a look, look at colors, stuff around, exit, come back in and then buy. Social networks could help break these mental barriers and create a trust relationship. Words of mouth marketing as well.

Social networking can be used to trigger interest in products, for context-based advertisements.

Operators should be involved because they know how to manage identities, transactions.


Karl: Do you record any live discussion between people?

A: No. Forbidden by law.

Karl: Social networks do that. There's always a third person in the room. And people aren't aware of it. Not explicit.

Q: Difference between fixed and mobile social networks?

A: Honestly. I see fewer and fewer differences. Everything's going to become mobile too.

Christine: It's not going to fixed. It's all going to mobile. I also heard another question: why do we have fragmented identities? In my view, the mobile community is much more focused.

Break out sessions

Privacy and Trust

Analysing Fragmentation or... Diversity!

* regional differences (cultural, countries, etc. ex: orkut in Brazil, mixi in Japan)

* functional (ex: MySpace for music, Flickr for photos)

* Friends, family, professional communities (ex: linkedin, copains d'avant)

* People choose networks depending on their interests

Why do they join?

* There is a sense of fashion, trends (moving communities)

* Peer pressure (to be part of the party), business pressure

Multiple Identities

* different identities depending on the communities

* but also different identities for different contexts (multiple identities for flickr, for twitter)

* Advantages of diverse identities for privacy reasons


* Broad statistics and generalization may exclude important minorities. If 95% of users do not need multiple identity, there is still 5% of users who will need it.

* Reminder or/and opt-in

* Diversity: More networks are cool, but the license agreement, the login, etc. makes it less likely to not join or at least difficult. How to manage the diversity? Cost of managing multiple profiles.

* Multiple social networks access does not mean unique identity everywhere but easy to manage your manage your identities

* Many different systems for identification

* How do you manage your identities? Maybe it should be on your machine. (ex: keychain on Macintosh used accross apps)


* People are not aware.

* Hard to educate, sometimes users don't want the hassles. They just need to be sur that the tool is doing what they expect with regards to their privacy

* still Privacy Awareness to users is important (legal reasons)

* W3C can play a role in Media litteracy

* What privacy means? What framework is needed.

* Guiding Core principles for Developers (of Social Networks)

* Guiding Core principles for Users

Using my data

* Usage of information (commercial, non commercial, profiling)

* Revenue participation. If you use my data, you should pay me in return

* Transmission of data such as creative commons but with more granularity and reporting (no defined mechanism)

* Data life. Depending on the usage context, I may want my data to disappear (forgetness)

* All my data on one social site is a no-no, even though people don't realize that some companies have a lot of data about you because of multiple services.

* Either too simple solutions (robots.txt) or too complex solutions (.htaccess) for enabling more granularity in sharing the data.

* there is no way right now to establish dialog between server/client to negociate the access to resources and control this sharing. If your service is using data in this way you can't/can access my data.

* foaf+ssl from henry - distributed authorization


* P3P was not very successful

* Any kind of technology related to Privacy descripition is hard or doomed to fail because it is a legal issue.

* European community and ISO are doing works on privacy with best practices. Collecting those would be good.

What W3C needs to do? - Low hanging fruits for w3c to standardize

* ACTION: Looking at what is out there and see if there is a stable core? through Incubator/Interest Group. (Venn Diagram)

* ACTION: Proposing solution for better protocols in sharing data (robots.txt, .htaccess replacement/standardized)

* ACTION: Web Privacy Guidelines for Devs and Users (a toolbox ready when social catastrophe happens)

Business models

Marcus: From Peperonni softwares. Going through the 5 questions in the agenda. My suggestion is that there is probably no universal business model that would work for everyone. What business models are there? How could they work in decentralized architectures?

PH: What is your business model?

Marcus: Basically, advertising. The experiences with premium billing were not very good. Several models: premium model (pay for everything), educational model (paid by someone else), ad-funded, and mix between paid and free content.

PH: Why do you think it works for you but not for Facebook.

Marcus: I'm not sure that Facebook really cares as much about getting money back at this point, compared to our company which had to get money from the very beginning.

Kemp: Mobile Operators are a good place to find strong connections to users.

Christine: Claudio had some slide on that.

Marcus: The problem with that is that you can have a community from a given operator and you can have a working business with that community, but it doesn't scale to global very well. So you're either local and get a share of the revenue, or global, and you need other solutions.

Sam: Handsets manufacturers could do the same kind of things.

Blaine: I used emails in an earlier session as an example of centralized vs. decentralized. Basically, every business model on the Internet incorporates email. No way to open an account without providing your email.

Sam: We started out with email addresses in GyPSii, and then went to China. Everyone has a mobile phone number over there, but no email address.

Blaine: Sure. It was only an example.

Christine: Links back to the discussion this morning. Connexion between the communication identity and social identities.

Kemp: Why do we need a GUID across all the networks. I think it's just fine that I have different IDs. What may be missing is a way to map between IDs. Maybe not a good idea to have one GUID for the human kind!

Marcus: Yes. The problem is less with the choice of identity than with how we charge the user in the end.

Blaine: I used Ravel to buy knitting stuff. Took me 15mn. Spent 4$. That's a good business model. Probably works for them.

Dan: scribe missed it

Kaushik: Communities, Content, Communications. Three Cs. Myspace may provide the communication and community for free and charge for video content for instance. Depending on your position, you may want to charge to one of the Cs.

Christine: Isn't there's one more node: Retail.

Kaushik: There are actually three more, but these are the 3 key nodes.

Marcus: What is the value that people would be willing to pay for? We have to all sit around one table and see what the costs are, and find out where the value is with a global view.

Claudio: Before talking about business models, you need to identify where your value is. If you take a jacket. Costs could be 10 to produce, 10 to advertise, and maybe 10 because you'll have to throw some away, ... The communities could be used to reduce the cost of the advertisement for instance. The North Face could leverage users' feedback to promote jackets for "free". This is money you don't spend, and that can thus be used in other places. That's a value of social networks.

Marcus: That's a value for the users. 20% off if you buy a jacket through a social network. You have to talk with manufacturers to explain that there's a value there.

Christine: Experiments were conducted: people would love to offer other gifts on networks. But the cost of micro-payment makes it prohibitive (double the price for a beer!).

Kaushik: Facebook tried some of this.

Tim: in the US, there's a service reserved to doctors. scribe missed a bit

Kemp: the value was in anonymising data?

Tim: yes.

???: Once everything's open, who can prevent me from creating a spinoff and using Facebook's API?

Kaushik: That's right, but there are strict rules.

Tim: In some cases, it's not about providing value on top of a community, it's in providing the place where the community gathers. The core value then is the community. Reversed advertising.

Lisa: I wonder if you could analyze why are premium services not successful?

Marcus: We tried different approaches. One thing we tried is to have users sell stuff to others. Hidden costs and paperwork (invoices) is prohibitive.

Kemp: Wonder how you can convert between virutal money such as credits exchanged in SecondLife and real money.

Sam: It may be that we never get to the possibility to have micro-payments.

Marcus: It may be that data consumers may be willing to pay to consume some data. Heavy users that produce the data need to be rewarded. The Simiti? model was integrated in a particular country with a particular operator. The payback process was real money in the end. Once you give users the possibility to make real money, then they will try to make money.

Blaine: We had an example where people registered to Twitter to receive SMS, because they were thinking they were gaining credits on their network operator bill for that.

Kaushik: QQ? in China. Your avatar needs to be well-dressed. If you don't refresh it, it loses clothes to the point where it can end up being nude. It's an example where business model may be specific to a culture, people.

Sam: in an hotel, found out that my Skype credit could be used to pay for the Wifi connection.

???: What is micro-payment?

Tim: 1-2$ or lower than that.

Marcus: It depends on the country you're selling things to.
... Where are the APIs and standardized models do we need in the future for everyone to be able to develop their own business models?

Blaine: What's the payment model for selling services on the phone? 1-800- numbers where the charges are pretty high.

Tim: Prices cannot move easily on the Web because of the lack of offer and demand info. Another problem is that all payment systems are different. Need to enter your credit card number everywhere.

Bill: Your APIs are to hard to use. Too different. Too fragmented. Operators have a better history on identities, but not on relationships. Trying to build a global pie is almost impossible.

Blaine: Scribe

Lisa: is getting

Sam: there were 100s and 1000s of electricity suppliers in each country. Regulation solved the incompatibilities.

Bill: tired.


Scribe missed a bunch of discussion here

Marcus: Wondering about future for standardization and W3C?

Tim: I'd like to see things on micro-payments. W3C started something years ago.

Dom: Maybe I can give a bit of context on micro-payments at W3C. Early days of the Web. Many people wanted it. Never finished because the banking system did not follow.

Tim: If you show them the money, I'm sure they'll be on board. There are already a few initiatives around them.

Kemp: I worked on micro-payments even before W3C on SAC(?). A business model where you are an intermediary between a group of users and another group of users works. Is there a general business model for social networks? That's unclear.

Lisa: Work a bit with NFC (Near-Field Communication) where we have the banks involved.

Miguel: Scribe missed that

Marcus: SMS worked by accident.

Claudio: In terms of business models, I guess there will be many ideas. We'll understand how to target and use social networks (listening to the same radio station as another friend, ...). This situation shows that we should be prepared to have a structural change in the way people interact. It's easy to blame operators because they charge for services that could be free. Note it could be far worse. We could buy Facebook and restrict users to that.

Blaine: It only works in a monopolistic situation. If data rates are too expensive, you can simply walk a little bit and use open Wifis access points around.

Marcus: We need ubiquitous access to payment and networks. For mobile to provide value for the industry in general.

Luis: The problem is that there is no global operator. Attempts to provide global APIs failed. For instance, I can locate my users, but cannot locate users from Telecom Italia. It won't work unless you have one operator in each country. The history of mobile operators is that there is no trust between them. It means the ways of thinking need to change.

Claudio: Right.

Marcus: In the end, we all depend on each other. Content providers on operators and on users. Operators on users and content providers. Users on ... So we have to work together on that.

Dom: Is there any specific input for standardization?

Bil: DiSO. Activity streams.

Blaine: Micro-payment APIs. When I'm in the States, I have an RFID credit card and within 15s can pay in a shop. Other systems don't interoperate. Regional collaboration created regional standards, and this could move to global.

Marcu: Maybe W3C can contribute on that.

Dom: It seems to me that the discussions here are at an earlier stage than this morning. It means we probably need a more informal structure. It could be an Incubator Group to continue this exploratory phase.

Marcus: Any more specific view of where we're going to be standing in 5 years from now?

Julian: Recent success and failure stories won't be the ones of the future. I'm expecting some quite disruptive models.

Marcus: Talking about metrics. We have unique users, returning users and registered users. Noone really does anything with that. Things are much more complex than simply the total number of users. How dense is the social network? It's very easy to generate users and traffic, but that doesn't mean there's a value.

Blaine: Metrics are usually considered as valuable proprietary information. I'm not sure there is any way to build standards around metrics, and not sure that companies would be interested anyway.

Marcus: What I'm trying to say is that a smaller social network may generate much more money than a big one.
... There will also be a bit of consolidation of figures and economics.

Deeper and Adaptive User Experiences

<link> Lisa's slides

<link> Henny's slides

Soren: on the first question (integration into daily life). Besides privacy issues, afraid of joining new networks because they eat your time - can easily spend hours on social networks! Peer pressure not to switch off phone or not reply to messages - don't want to annoy people. Suggestion from academia is to leave room for ambiguity - give excuses "I ran out of battery" etc. Important to maintain the potential for this ambiguity.

John_Kemp: The network needs opacity: we must create mechanisms to make the network slower, have more layers of communication, forget, take time to do things. This doesn't exist much at the moment. Two MyCampus project users: one said "semantic web, that's good for accessing data, but what I want is to prevent access"; other said "can your system lie? We need it!" e.g. bank - we're happy to provide location information but it's not a good idea to reveal who has access to a safe room!

Henry: people are afraid that if they put information out people can know anything about them; everything published is not necessarily true! Who says what has always been important. You're legally responsible for what you say about me.

Simon_Hay: difference between lying, obfuscation by generalisation, not giving out any information at all. Bat system not having sensors in the toilet - but you can still tell by the *lack* of position information!

Henry: St Augustine wrote a whole book on types of lying... You can tell the truth and still be lying!

Harry_Halpin: users really want a complete web experience, even on iPhones, cell phones etc. W3C principles: everyone agrees the web should be accessible and so on. The question is: from a technology standpoint, should there be 'one web', or should accessibility be driven firstly by the mobile web?

John_Kemp: the mobile handset goes with you wherever you go - but just a mobile handset is an accessibility problem (size of keys, touchscreens etc.) Opportunity to fix thing there in one way. Phone is with you and has all these sensors - currently one that's important is GPS. We have a W3C spec for geolocation APIs. Imagine also haptic sensors and so on: opportunity to put in new UIs which aid accessibility for everyone and provide a much deeper connection between the real world and your social network. Not clear there's an immediate opportunity to standardise anything here though.

Lisa: at least in the US market, accessiblity (e.g. hearing aid compatibility) has been mandated by the government, and this has really caused the industry to put effort in. There's otherwise not really a business model to support it - but keen to bring in the growing market of aging people etc. Not sure where W3C can contribute - almost needs to be on a government level.

Henny: the W3C is doing a lot of work around older users and how to facilitate access within the accessibility initiative; project to research issues around aging and access. Can only see this becoming more and more of a mainstream area. Noone plans on dying young!

Vadym_Kramar: we always discuss trying to get full blown web browsers on mobile phones, but e.g. on his desktop computer he sometimes enables mobile mode to get simpler, cleaner pages. Poor interface designed for mobile users sometimes the best you can get from a site! Most only have two fixed options - full or mobile - rather than customisability. Should we distinguish between 'web applications' and 'browser applications'? Any app seen in browser are still inside it - user still sees the browser buttons etc. Some users find it hard, if they ever close the window, to find their way back to where they were. Better to have shortcut to web application without any browser surroundings?

Henny: think that's great, and Opera have widgets to do just that - run off their browser but without the chrome. Can think of nothing better than being a blind user sat at work writing shopping list, synced to phone, listening to list at supermarket, then use barcode reader! That's what it's all about - not there yet but no reason why not - just need to push for it. Google Chrome also has that feature. Mozilla also has an extension they're working on.

Vadym: but not an industry standard - not mandatory.

Dom: W3C is working on a standard for widgets - just went to last call. If you're interested, look now rather than later!

Chrome can do it because it comes bundled with Gears - plugin you can install in pretty much any browser. Many things appearing in Gears are now part of HTML 5. Interesting way of driving standards - launch and expect standard to follow. But can take years before you can be confident users will have plugin installed (see Flash) - otherwise it'll never fly. Need to move fast on this.

Dom: refocus discussion! Is there anything specific to social networking that needs more work?

Simon: context aware interfaces - help or hindrance for accessibility?

Henny: need to make people aware you're going to make a change. Communicating to the user - making them aware about what to expect. Not inaccessible - just confusing!

Henry: where I see the semantic web helping is that, by publishing the data rather than the user interface, you can allow different UIs to be created for different types of people. Say we all publish FOAT files: now you can create special address books for the blind. You're just presenting the data...

Henny: good point; if you're blind and you're navigating a web page, you don't see the layout - you just build up a mental image. You might tab through in a linear fashion, or through the links first etc. Dependent on your behaviour on the page. One of the problems is identity theft. Trying to use biometrics to identify users - vulnerable to replay attacks. Provide browsers with tools to guarantee the source and freshness of information? Privacy awareness for social network users - how do we educate users about these issues? How do you explain to developers how to create a site that is respectful of users' privacy?

Dom: maybe guidelines about ethics of social networks would be useful? Expression of interest: various people interested in working on guidelines about privacy, descriptions of best practices.

Soren: to what extent do you think users welcome prepopulated form field?

Lisa: what we found - mostly from industry experts - was that if users have to fill in everything, that's a barrier - want some guidance and profiling to help them.

Soren: autocompletion or prefilled?

Lisa: both - it depends. Nokia: you turn on phone and it asks where you are, what the date is etc. - but your phone should know already!

Henry: semantic forms. If you know a field is looking for a particular piece on information the phone can fill that in for you ahead of time.

Henny: I like the idea of having your own information already inputted so long as everyone, with any access tech, is aware it's already there and can check it. Can confuse people: blind people don't know the field is populated, tab into field, write in the middle of a word etc. Sounds great, but user test it!

Soren: are users aware that if a form is prepopulated the data comes from your machine, or might they think the site has filled in the information? Any hard evidence from user studies?

Lisa: the network operators obviously know a lot about you, but do you really want them downloading that data into forms? At least if the user inputs it themself they feel in control.

There are explicit communities - defined as friends, friends of friends etc. - and implicit ones - people who use same tags, or are at same location. What type of communities are we addressing? Do we consider communities of the latter sort as a social network?

activity on privacy and security context awareness. Now we're talking a device that's following me, sensing things about me, knows my social network: it's extremely important that it must keep me informed of my current privacy and security context! Even more so for people with disabilities - but for me too! How safe is it for me to do something?

All sites must be accessible, but social networking sites are in a better position to be so because they know all about the user and his capabilities!

Henny: only to an extent though; you don't know what access technology they might be using etc. More so on an intranet.

John: you have content accessibility guidelines, mobile web best practices etc. Perhaps there needs to be more outreach from the W3C to make sure social networking guys are aware of them?


Hazaël-Massieux_Dominique_(W3C/ERCIM), Medina_Manel_(UPC/SeMarket), Critchley_Sam_(GyPSii), Appelquist_Daniel_(Vodafone), Kemp_John_(Nokia_Corporation), Bournez_Carine_(W3C/ERCIM), Halpin_Harry_(Univ_of_Edinburgh, HCRC_Language_Technology_Group), Sethuraman_Kaushik_(Microsoft_Corp.), Perey_Christine_(PEREY_Research_&_Consulting), Venezia_Claudio_(Telecom_Italia_SpA), Forgue_Marie-Claire_(W3C/ERCIM), Kitmeridis_Panagiotis_(German_National_Library), Rowe_Matthew_(University_of_Sheffield), Gimeno_Juan_Manuel_(Universitat_de_Lleida), García_Roberto_(Universitat_de_Lleida), Hay_Simon_(University_of_Cambridge), Kramar_Vadym_(OAMK/PBOL), Vakali_Athena_(Aristotle_University), Constandt_Hans_(Eli_Lilly), Preibusch_Sören_(University_of_Cambridge_-_Computer_Laboratory), Sainz_David_(Telefonica), Salvachua_joaquin_(Universidad_Politécnica_de_Madrid), Dubost_Karl, Tapiador_Antonio_(Universidad_Politécnica_de_Madrid), Cerviño_Javier_(Universidad_Politécnica_de_Madrid), Méndez_Rubén_(ATOS_ORIGIN_S.A.E), Crespo_Alberto_(Atos_Origin), Scherp_Ansgar_(Universität_Koblenz-Landau), Hui_Yuk_(Goldsmiths, University_of_London), Olmedilla_Daniel_(Telefonica_R&D), Lara_Rubén_(Telefonica_R&D), Passant_Alexandre_(DERI), Muñoz_Paredes_José_María_(Lawyer), Ferne_Peter_(Jiva_Technology), Pekarek_Martin_(Tilburg_University), Galindo_Luis_Angel_(Telefónica_de_España, SAU), Anglade_Timothee_(af83), Pekelman_Ori_(AF83), Quercia_Daniele_(UCL), Mika_Peter_(Yahoo!, Inc.), McKnight_Lisa_(Nokia), Pye_Julian_(Vodafone), Melinger_Dan_(Socialight), Sullivan_Sean_(consultant), Martinez_Jaime_(Eli_Lilly), Palmisano_Davide_(Asemantics_S.R.L.), Parslow_Pat_(University_of_Reading), Mostarda_Michele_(Asemantics_S.R.L.), Kärger_Philipp_(L3S_Research_Center), Blaine_Cook_(BT), Ptak_Eric_(Atos_Worldline), Gandon_Fabien_(Institut_National_de_Recherche_en_Informatique_et_en_Automatique), Holt_Ian_(Ordnance_Survey), Henry_Story_(Sun_Microsystems), Mello_Andrew_(88plug), Daoust_François_(W3C/ERCIM), Pous_Marc_(TMT_Factory_Research_Department), Rost_Mattias_(SICS), Swan_Henny_(Opera_Software), Belloni_Nicolas_(SICS), Campbell_Christopher_(Flock_Inc.), González_José_(María_Telefónica_I+D), Hoschka_Philipp_(W3C/ERCIM), Bill_de_hÓra_(NewBay_Software), Miguel-Angel_Monjas_(Ericsson), Nguyen_Benjamin_(Université_de_Versailles_St-Quentin_(Labo._PRiSM)), Ladwig_Marcus_(Pereponi), Álvarez_Martín_(Fundación_CTIC_-_Centro_Tecnológico_para_el_Desarrollo_en_Asturias_de_las_Tecnologías_de_la_Información_y_la_Comunicación), Medina_Marcel_(Ready_People), Roigé_Ivan_(SeMarket), Morales_Pacheco_(ReadyPeople), Ribás_Ramon_(Vodafone_Spain), Martínez_Rosa_(SeMarket), Garcia_Sandra_(UOC), Martin_Lopez_Miguel_(NEC), Pastor_Alberto_(Telefónica_I+D), Jamen_Gala_(Telefonica_I+D), Ferazzini_Axel_(OMA), Didac_Royo_(SITMobile), Troytino_Isabel_(Citilab.eu), Media_Manel_(UPC), Ruis_Maria-Jesus_Fernandez_(Ayutamiento_de_Zaragoza), Philips_Chris_(Ordonance_Survey), Delgado_Jaime_(UPC), Rodriguez_Eva_(UPC)
Christine Perey, Dominique Hazael-Massieux
Francois, Karl, Harry, Simon
[End of minutes]

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$Date: 2009/01/22 08:05:21 $