I like the feature – as I’ve said a few times on this blog when covering Plaxo Pulse (here and here), a universal news feed that aggregates your friends’ activity from all over the web adds a lot of value. I would imagine that these services will continue to propagate and thrive as long as FB chooses not to offer it themselves.
But what I find really interesting here is MyBlogLog’s choice of resource allocation. There are a lot of things they could be working on now. They could be working on a Facebook App. They could be working on an OpenSocial / MySpace App. They could be adding to their stable of blog widgets. They could be focusing on their API.
As a backdrop, this is a company that has always prioritized its presence on the open web over its destination site community. Indeed, the fact that MyBlogLog.com is light on traffic didn’t get in the way of a nice exit for the company.
So why this sudden interest in their destination site? It could be due to a couple of factors. Maybe they stumbled across my post on Hub & Spoke and saw the light :) Maybe there’s corporate Yahoo! pressure to deliver ad revenue, which as we know, is easier to do on a destination site than with a sidebar widget.
Or maybe it’s a cookie problem. I don’t know about anybody else, but somewhere along the way, I lost my MyBlogLog cookie and just haven’t gone back to MyBlogLog.com to activate it again. How do you make people go login again? You give them a reason to go to the destination site.
The promise of cross domain features with a single login is one of the most compelling aspects of the new generation of cross platform, cross domain web services. MyBlogLog is a “presence” feature – one that could be considered a spinoff of the popular “who’s online” feature on social networks. It works anywhere, and if you’re logged in to this feature on one domain with a MyBlogLog widget, you’re logged into all of them.
The problem for service like MyBlogLog without a very active destination site is that once that cookie is lost, it’s difficult to get their users to log back in again. If you provide them a reason to login to the destination site, you’re more likely to retain that cookie, thus making your distributed footprint reach its full potential.
Yet another example of how a sturdy home base community can enhance a distributed footprint.