When 5000-Facebook-friends (opens in new tab) celebrity tech blogger Robert Scoble tested a forthcoming social networking utility called Plaxo Pulse to retrieve details of his Facebook friends, he got unceremoniously dumped by the social networking website.
For some observers (opens in new tab) though, it shows a dangerous route that social networking websites are not hesitating to follow: considering their members details as their own.
Robert Scoble indicated the paradox of Facebook's "Valve": you can seamlessly import data from other sources (Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo) but don't expect to export anything.
It also points to the reality that social networking are evolving into closed systems, just like operating systems did in the 1980s and 1990s, trying to prevent their own users from taking ownership of their own content.
But the worst was still to come as Scoble account was removed altogether from Facebook without any warning letter; and as Piers Fawkes writes on PSFK, don’t Worry About Big Companies (opens in new tab) & Your Privacy, Worry About Those “Friends”.