Yahoo! Opens Address Books; Plaxo and LinkedIn Already Live

In another part of its bold “Open Strategy”, Yahoo today announced public availability of its Address Book API. Plaxo, always first to embrace a new open technology, is already live with support, along with another major contact-aware service provider, LinkedIn.

This is an important step in the opening up of the Social Web. A few months ago, the only way to help a user import their contacts into a social web app was to ask them for their webmail username and password. Clearly, that’s a bad idea, but in the absence of address book APIs, it at least worked. Now, the Big Three all have contacts APIs: Microsoft, Google, and Yahoo! each have come out with APIs that give users secure access to their address books.

I sat down with Joseph Smarr of Plaxo to get the inside scoop. My interview is here:

And here’s coverage from TechCrunch’s Mark Hendrickson and from CNET’s Stephen Shankland.

[Disclaimer/reminder: I work for Plaxo, a company covered in this post.]

4 thoughts on “Yahoo! Opens Address Books; Plaxo and LinkedIn Already Live

  1. […] Developer Guide. Also, I recommend watching the following interview with Joseph Smarr of Plaxo that John McCrea posted. Joseph is one of the most articulate people in the industry about social web […]

  2. Charlie says:

    So Y! connects to LinkedIn, but Plaxo doesn’t?

    How come the LinkedIn issue (you know, the premium service you still advertise, still hasn’t been fixed yet?

    It’s obvious this isn’t a technical problem. LinkedIn is undoubtedly blocking you guys and this feature isn’t coming back anytime soon. Perhaps you should take it off your premium menu and partially refund all your premium members.

  3. therealmccrea says:

    Charlie, Indeed we are working on it, but if you’d like a refund, happy to provide one. Send me email to john at plaxo dot com.

  4. Tony says:

    That explains things :-). I have been looking for the linkedin sync feature for days now. It really might be a good idea to at least announce that this is not working a the moment.

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