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MySpace revs profile transfer engine

Down with the walled garden

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MySpace has launched an initiative that will one day allow its social-networking-obsessed users to automatically shuttle their profile data to third-party web sites.

This includes biographical information, lists of friends, lists of interests, lists of favorite songs, and lists of favorite movies as well as photos and videos.

"Today, we're announcing the launch of MySpace Data Availability, an innovative offering to empower the global MySpace community to share their public profile content and data to web sites of their choice throughout the internet," CEO and co-founder Chris DeWolfe said during a conference call with reporters. "This enables a new layer of social activity, creating a much more dynamic internet."

A handful of third-party sites joined MySpace in announcing this data transfer idea - including Yahoo!, eBay, Photobucket, and Twitter - but the idea has yet to become reality. DeWolfe says that users won't actually have the power to transfer data for another "several weeks."

At some point, MySpace will also invite the rest of the web to join its initiative. And that includes Facebook. So, you may soon have the power to automatically migrate your MySpace profile, your MySpace photos, your MySpace videos, and your MySpace friends list to MySpace's biggest rival.

You see, DeWolfe and company now believe in openness. "Historically, social destinations on the internet have operated as independent autonomous islands," DeWolfe said. "Social activity isn't about creating a walled-garden. Socially dynamic web destination should be portable and should allow users to import and export outside of their platform."

Of course, the company's partners must agree not to abuse your data. MySpace has already promised. ®

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