OpenID Smackdown

TechCrunch’s Michael Arrington is stirring up debate on the important topic of OpenID, with a post last night calling the “Big Four” Internet companies to task for being OpenID supporters without actually becoming “relying parties.” Some of them have at least become OpenID providers as “issuing parties”.

Funny that, Plaxo, forever focused on who-you-are and who-you-know, is a rare example of a company that is just a Relying Party (but is not yet an Issuing Party). What does that mean? All OpenIDs are welcome there, whether issued by Yahoo!, AOL, Google, Clickpass, or any other standards-compliant provider. 

The momentum behind OpenID has clearly been building over the past year, and OpenID is looking to be one of the key building blocks for the Social Web. That said, much work remains to make this a mainstream technology. Yahoo! made a bold first attempt to create a consumer-friendly implementation, but that remains an unfinished project. Clickpass, a startup focused completely on that challenge, has come out strong, but has losts of tough work ahead of it to make the Clickpass signin anything approaching universal.

That said, expect to be hearing a lot more about this promising open standard as the year of data portability rolls on.

Some good analysis and commentary by Jason Kolb here.

And additional context and thoughts from David Recordon here.

One thought on “OpenID Smackdown

  1. […] but are not accepting them. In other words, they are an OpenID Provider, but not a Relying Party.  John McCrea echos what Michael said, and Jason Kolb and David Recordon also wrote posts — and I agree […]

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