Sunday 2 May 2010

The Value of Trust

The Open Graph project initiated by Facebook is set to further enhance its ability to create value from its membership base. Having more than 400 million registered users, such base is definitely enough to attract advertisers, especially when Facebook could offer a more targeted customer segments given the amount of private information it collects from its members.

The new initiative allows third parties to offer certain Facebook functions such at the "like" function. Attached to certain products or information, this would be a powerful tool to accumulate information for advertising purposes. Such ability create concern on whether private information will be exploited by both Facebook and the third parties.

How did Facebook ended up with huge information regarding its users?

First, I suppose, is the trust the members have on Facebook in not exploiting information which the members share with their friends. This was reinforce with the lack of commercial activities of Facebook in the past. On the other hand, sharing information had also enable users to pull value to themselves by being connected to long lost friends, building relationships with new friends as well as advocating their views and thoughts with the community at large.

The commercial success of project Open Graph would be dependent on whether the trust level of Facebook members could be retained. If enough people on Facebook feel that their information is being exploited for commercial reasons without adequate value in return,the project would encourage people to move away from Facebook.

Who says trust has no value?

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