Weekly Digest of the Social Networking Space: Jan 21, 2009


I’m respecting your limited time by publishing this weekly digest on the Social Networking space, which I cover as an industry analyst. By creating this digest (I started this over a year ago) it really helps me to stay on top of the space I cover.

I’ve created a new category called Digest (view archives). Start with the Web Strategy Summary, then quickly scan the succinct and categorized headlines, read text for my take, and click link to dive in for more.

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Web Strategy Summary
It’s important you track LinkedIn’s movement as they truly become an enterprise web service, their announcement partnering with IBM is a key step in their opportunity to become the future intranet of any company. Various community vendors have had some partnership announcements such as Pluck and Lithium boasts a large revenue gain over this past year. Social Networks reflect life, and we’ve seen a bump in activity around Obama’s inauguration.

Partnership: Linkedin integrates with IBM’s Lotus
Perhaps the most important news of the week, but overshadowed by election news is LinkedIn’s partnership with IBM which extends it’s social graph info to Lotus collaboration and community suite. Why is this important? It means that workers can now connect with people outside of work to get jobs done –the network has expanded significantly.

Politics: Inauguration spurs social network activity
RWW reports how the live player at CNN connected to Facebook connect helps to spur social interaction online –no one is watching by themselves now, it’s all one connected community.

Feature: LinkedIn launches polls
In a way to better understand the community, LinkedIn’s polling feature will help brands and others understand what’s top of mind for it’s members.

Revenues: Lithium has 100% revenue growth
Always a good sign: Lithium boasts that their “100% percent growth in new monthly recurring revenue in less than one year” as a result of growth in the community space.

Privacy: Chinese gamers must reveal names
Online games in China have exploded, which has caused changes in culture, both good –and bad. As a result, a movement to force gamers to share their real names online has been put in place.

Partnership: KickApps Integrates Meebo And Yahoo! Maps
Media savvy KickApps launches some key partnerships with Meebo, Yahoo Maps, and combines video players to allow brands to extend the experience of Meebo and Yahoo, but to also make community sites more engaging.

Layoffs: Mzinga cuts 6%
As with many tech companies, startups are a reality, Mzinga cuts 6%, which could mean good news for long term sustainability, but could challenge their ability to execute against their goals. Interestingly, I didn’t see an announcement from Mzinga folks (although they left a comment last week)

Future: Social Networks of the future? the car

Thought leader David Berkowitz interviews Ford executive on how the car (using Sync technology) will soon become a social network hub and node.

Culture: 10 top social network annoyances
Thank god, someone finally made this list, #1? MySpace Kitsch. Someone needs to create a ‘de-bling’ app.

If you’re a social network, or widget company, I want to know of your news, send me an email, or leave a comment below. Help me stay up to date.

Hungry For Social Networking Stats? Then you should see my collection of Social Networks Stats for 2008 and 2009. Bookmark them, then share it with others as I continue to update it.