web 2.0

A stand on internet privacy from Google

“Privacy laws have not kept up with the reality of the internet and
technology, where we have vast amounts of information and every time a
credit card is used online, the data on it can move across six or seven
countries in a matter of minutes,” Mr Fleischer told the Financial
Times
ahead of his speech.

This is good.

It may be a partially-formed thought at the moment, but without Google’s participation, any initiative will struggle to become a standard. With Google’s involvement, online practice and laws have a chance of defending our privacy – but in ways that are practical for individuals and lawyers, and commercially sound for online businesses.

So for example A Bill of Rights for Users of the Social Web and has a lot more chance of becoming accepted if it’s adopted by Google – and Skype. It’ll be interesting to see how the two approaches compare.

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Techcrunch on social networks/local search in the UK

’tis the new big thing: local search + social network recommendations.

Actually, I saw a broadsheet Sunday newspaper quoting research that ‘we’ trust our friends’ and communities’ restaurant  recommendations more than we trust professional restaurant reviewers – so maybe there’s something in this social networking, reviews, and local search thing?!

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Google’s Socialstream blends content…

There’s a video demo of this companion/development of Orkut and a good description on  Googlesystem’s unofficial blog
… which looks just fine – but but but is it just going to feed our privacy concerns?

I’m sure Google will draw a clear line between the data they allow to be scraped & blended into nosey services… but where will they draw the line? And how far back will Google go into our histories?

Picked up from Mashable

The UK’s internet fraud map… worrying privacy issues

“London has been confirmed as the web-fraud capital of Britain, leading the pack when it comes to CNP (cardholder not present) fraud.

With an increase of around 22% in national internet card crime, the latest Early Warning Fraud Map
shows London, Manchester, Coventry, Kilmarnock and Bristol as
sustaining significantly more fraudulent transactions than elsewhere.”

…from Antony Savvas, at Computer Weekly – it’s a good follow through from his post in March this year:

Over one-in-ten (12%) internet users have experienced web fraud in past 12 months, costing them an average of £875 each.

The figure is reported by government and industry online safety campaign Get Safe Online.
 
A
survey among UK internet adult users (who number a total of 29m) found
that 12% had experienced online fraud in the last year. 

In
that time, 6% had suffered fraud while shopping online, 5% had
experienced another form of general online fraud and 4% were subject to
bank account or credit card fraud as a result of activity online (some
users experienced more than one of these types of fraud).”

The fraud map broadly follows population – no surprise there. What’s most worrying is that fraud rose by 22%. That may simply be the fraudsters’ response to chip n pin’s introduction in February 2006 – which may well have shifted card fraud from point of sale to cardholder not present transactions.

But if we can’t keep our money secure, with the help of our banks, then what chance have we of keeping our personal data secure? It’s a real issue, because no amount of protection by our banks can prevent ID theft if individually we leave data trails across the web that allow fraudsters to construct a personal profile.

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Customer 2.0 : I own my privacy

Have you seen rapleaf ?
or upscoop
oh and there’s quechup as well – which has some of plaxo’s worst habits (which plaxo quickly shed),

It’s Spam 2.0 – the start of the social spam revolution.

I’ve seen conversations on 2 separate professional networks that are apalled by them & the loss of privacy that’s implicit – for example, I now know what’s on one of my client’s Amazon Wish Lists. Which I guess is OK if you actually know somebody… but not OK if you’ve scraped an email address & set out to learn anything you can about a person for who-knows-what purpose.

The only defence is to use separate public & personal email addresses – and even that would be defeated by viral tools in these services’ signup processes.

Oh, and Facebook just announced that it’s opening public profiles to search engines – so expect an outrage in 5-6 weeks time. And then folk will adjust and go back to their lives, on & offline.

But the cumulative effect will be for the ‘signal to noise’ ratio to drop – the proportion of genuine messages will reduce, amongst an increase of social spam.

All these rape our privacy.

Expect to see more folk using closed communities (like Phuser ), and the ‘private’ options on Facebook et al. Bit by bit we’ll learn to take control of our own privacy, and take responsibility for our privacy.

That’s the service that Rapleaf offer: to protect & control your privacy. I’m in two minds as to whether they’ll profit from exposing the problem (which they didn’t create…) Or if they’ll be a victim of their own success at exposing a genuine social problem.

Mashups crossing the chasm

BEA’s pan-european business survey includes this news (as reported by Silicon):
The survey also found that the demand for mashups,
where a website or application that combines content from more than one
source into an integrated experience, was set to treble from its
current level of 6% of organisations to 18% within 18 months.”

Have you got an adoption curve to hand? Then we’ll begin!
At 6%, mashups are playful fun for early innovators: at 18%, they’re heading rapidly for the mainstream, in 2009.

Trouble is, at the same time elsewhere in Silicon today, they’re reporting on IT skills shortages – with retail organisations and banks unable to fill 40%-50% of vacancies… Now, maybe the skilled workforce doesn’t exist in the right parts of the country. Or maybe companies aren’t paying enough – in spite of IT’s year on year pay inflation. Genuinely useful online features save business money by reducing cost while making it easier to perform a task: that’s just the sort of high-bang-for-the-buck customer content that mashups provide. Perhaps some of those cost-efficiency gains need to be diverted back to their source – IT teams’ pay packets?

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Collaboration, customer, community

TomTom GO 520 satellite navigation toy allows customers to update maps while driving, correcting their device’s information with what’s actually on the road. And then, of course to upload that update to a community, in exchange for corrections from other users.

Potentially this lifts the huge burden of updates from mapmakers – when TomTom and other satellite navigation manufacturers achieve a critical mass of customers. Service providers’ role changes to ‘verification’ rather than sourcing the update information, which is always a delayed process. Presumably, over time, an agreed verification standard will establish how often a map error needs to be reported before it’s considered verified.And the next step is to have this information reported back live from the vehicle, rather than delayed, from the owner’s office. That would allow for routing around roadworks that might cause delay for a few hours.

/ edit

Yesterday in Berlin TomTom announced their updated range all of which include Map Share. The range includes TomTom GO 920T and a 3d generation TomTom One

future of eMail

It’s good to see mozilla pushing their Thunderbird mail client forwards over the horizon.
I’ve used Thunderbird on & off for several years – at the moment it’s ‘on’, just.

There’s not too many problems with Thunderbird – most of the issues are with email, not any specific mail programme. I’d prefer if it collaborated more with other services – by which I mean with open standards, so that I can plug any service into Thunderbird. And some more speed would be good when syncing IMAP accounts… as would much tighter integration with browsers (not just Firefox), so that the leap from email to other media content (web page, podcast, video, IPTV programme and so forth) was as small as possible. That speed issue alone makes it tough to see how Thunderbird in its present state could get close to delivering mobileemail services.

As a marketer, the easier that a programme is to use, the more I like it: if folk receiving email find it easier to get to engaging content, then that’s good for online marketers.

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