I’m an early signer to the Bill of Rights for Users of the Social Web, a document whose goal is to give the data to users. Idealistic? Impossible? maybe, but it doesn’t mean we shouldn’t demand it. It takes more than a small group of loud thought leaders to make a movement work, it requires the entire user base to vote by their clicks and eyeballs.
Many companies want to horde their user data, a lock-in model is classic web. The savvy brand will realize that by building a website that users want, and letting them expand to other networks and having ownership, maybe, just maybe they’ll return.
The open-data movement is really about ownership, users want to own their data. The only way it will work is if you tell your website you want ownership. I suggested that users should have the ability to delete their own data if need be too.
Joseph Smarr has as post on the Plaxo blog, they’re building such a platform that will allow the movement of data, Marc Canter lists early signers, Scoble is in on it, and there will be plenty others.