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Findings and Future Direction of the W3C Social Web Incubator Group (SWXG)

Mischa Tuffield

[email protected] (@mischatuffield)

2010-11-17 : Workshop on the Future of Social Networking: Experts from Industry and Academia

Slides :

Presentation Overview

Knowledge is (Potential) Power

Walled Gardens

Knowledge may be power, but this knowledge is distributed throughout social networks of people. Without ways of building the Social Web into a first-class citizen of the Web, we will never be able to "program the social computer" to solve large-scale social problems.


After the W3C Workshop on the Future of Social Networking in Barcelona, for over a year the Social Web Incubator Group has been meeting on a weekly basis to overview the space and craft a strategy for the W3C.

The results are grim...

It's no longer the wild west...

Vincos Map June 2009

Facebook is taking over

Vincos Map Dec 2009

dominating ...

Vincos Map June 2010

World Map of Social Networks

Let's Webize the Unix FileSystem

TimBL Distributed Storage

Socially Aware Cloud Storage and Distributed Social Networking

Your Digital Persona

Capturing your Digital Persona at Source : Lifelogging

Lifelogging & Empowerment (1)

Lifelogging & Empowerment (2)

Our Digital Identity is as Insecure as ever

Firesheep screenshot

Log-in to your favorite social networking site using passwords and cookies, and the cookie is sent over the now your identity can easily be hijacked by anyone (particularly with the Firesheep plug-in).

See the presentation

Download Firefox plug-in

EFF's HTTPS Everywhere

Topics Covered

Our survey included detailing technologies and initiatives in the following spaces

There are (too many) solutions but little uptake by users

A Girl Graphic

And all this work is happening outside the W3C, and needs to be co-ordinated with the core of the Web to solve the problem of security.

  1. OAuth
  2. XRD
  4. Infocards
  5. OpenID Connect
  6. PortableContacts
  7. OpenSocial
  8. OExchange
  9. Payswarm
  10. ActivityStreams
  11. OStatus
  12. SAML
  13. Kantara Initiative

Who helped

This document is the product of the Social Web (SWXG) Incubator Group. At the time of publication, the active members of the Social Web Incubator Group included Tim Anglade, Daniel Appelquist, Dan Brickley, Melvin Carvalho, Venezia Claudio, Harry Halpin, Renato Iannella, Toby Inkster, Alexandre Passant, Christine Perey, Ronald Reck, Ted Thibodeau, Mischa Tuffield, Oshani Seneviratne, Henry Story, Fabien Gandon, and Paul Trevithick. This report is dedicated to the memory of Peter Ferne, who participated in the Social Web Incubator Group. The group would like to thank the following people who we consulted with over the lifetime of the Social Web Incubator Group in order to make this final report: Robin Berjon, Tim Berners-Lee (MIT), Joseph Bonneau (Cambridge), Marcos Caceres (Opera), Michael Cooper (W3C), Sam Critchley (Gypsii), Anita Doehler (Vodafone), Nathan Eagle (MIT), Kaliya Hamlin (Identity Commons), Michael Hanson (Mozilla), Dick Hardt (OpenID Foundation), Eran Hammer-Lahav (Yahoo!), Yolanda Gil (USc), Paul Groth (Vrije University Amsterdam ), Lalana Kagal (MIT), Ros Lawler (Random House), Matt Lee (Free Software Foundation), Chris Messina (Google), Alexandre Monnin (Sorbonne), Sören Preibusch (Cambridge), Evan Prodromou (Status.Net), David Raggett (W3C), Aza Raskin (Mozilla), David Recordon (Facebook), Gregory Rosmaita, Janina Sajka (Web Accessibility Initiative), Luke Shepard (Facebook), Joseph Smarr (Google), Manu Sporny (Digital Bazaar), Peter St. Andre (Cisco), Simon Tenant, and Slim Trabelsi (SAP). We also gratefully received and incorporated comments from J. Trent Adams (ISOC), Jon Bradley (OpenID Foundation), Joni Brennan (Kantara Initiative), John Bradley (OpenID Foundation), and Brian Kissel (OpenID Foundation). Finally, the W3C would like to thank Eduserv for providing a W3C Fellowship for Harry Halpin.

READ the Final Report

The Social Web XG's Final Report is the first (30 page) description of (more-or-less) the entire Social Web, from identity, profiles, social media, privacy, activity, and emerging work...

Identity in the Browser (Aza)
  1. Investigate Identity in the Browser (mozilla)
  2. Co-ordinate the Core of Profile Data (foaf, vcard, et al)
  3. Combining Social Media and the Semantic Web
  4. An Over-arching Privacy Activity Focusing on the Social Web (dap, html5)
  5. Support the Federated Social Web
  6. Open the World Wide Web Consortium - Community Groups

Future W3C Efforts

TimBL Original Proposal

The final version of the report should be available, in HTML format, from tonight

And in conclusion

TimBL metro

<-- My favourite TimBL picture, The Semantic Metro

W3C will re-invigorate privacy and digital identity with new resources, hosting workshops to gather requirements for Web Identity from eGov and e-Commerce, and may start a Working Group in this area. The "Community Group" proposal implements most of the structural changes necessary to make the W3C suitable for future social web work, and the W3C will provide resources for the next round of the Federated Social Web effort as a new Community Group.