Hi Guys - in the interest of transparency and also sharing information
and thinking, I thought I would publish a small Q&A I got from a
> Hi Chris,
> Thank you for your time and my compliments for your great initiative.
Thank you very much.
> I've some questions, focussing on the consumers side of the story. Since you say that nothing is going to change without their support.
Certainly true - users will need to be educated about their rights
> The first question that comes to my mind is how want to convince the normal user, Average Joe on Facebook? How are you gonna reach him? Which examples will you use?
Users will be reached in a few ways.
1. People like Robert Scoble and other 'Celebrity User Stories' will
help bring light to the issue
2. An education campaign needs to be (and will be) created with
documentation and examples designed for users to understand. We have
started this process by starting some 'ActionPacks'.
3. We will begin promoting the DP Badge as a sort of 'Intel Inside'
brand to look for when visiting sites. We hope this will be a simple
way of identifying services and vendors that respect user rights and
conform to the reference design.
4. Workgroup members and early adopter startups will begin
implementing the DataPortability reference designs and act as shining
examples for users to get a feel for what the world could be like.
Some may even gain or dominate marketshare by having first mover
advantage. As you can tell by looking at the workgroup members
already, there are individuals who happen to work at very large
companies such as Yahoo, Myspace, Seesmic, Disney, BBC, NineMSN, Dow
Jones/Fox and others.
That's not to say those companies have committed to anything, but the
individuals involved are very smart and committed people.
> My guess is that you try to start a buzz in the expert side of the web, hoping that they will reach the consumers. Am I right?
Exacly, we will start with early adopters and influencers and work our
way into the mainstream. Ultimately though, the hope is that a
'DataPortability enabled experience' should be simple to use and
A user would simply log onto a site, grant permission, and their
friends, personal details and media (images, video, documents) are
already populated/accessible - Nothing more complex than that.
> And how is dataportability.org
organized? What do you ask of the contributors?
It is organized into two groups. There is the DP Workgroup which is a
small group of well placed individuals who are experts in their field.
People from the companies I mentioned above as well as the people who
were responsible for things like Microformats, OpenID, Macromedia,
RDF. APML, XMPP etc.
The workgroup works to design and ratify things like the DP Reference
Design (the design we are publishing to help developers understand how
to implement all the standards as an end-to-end solution).
They are asked to contribute based on their skills and experience.
The members of the workgroup are much like the members of the DP
Standards Stack - they each contribute something different. Some are
very heavily involved in the actual creation of the standards and
working with those communities (and have been doing that long before
the DataPortability initiative came along!). Some are involved in
creating models for how it all fits together. Some are experts at
creating software for code samples etc and others are great writers
and bloggers for sending out the message far and wide. And others are
simply good at getting attention.
If you want to fundamentally improve how the applications on web work,
it takes all sorts of people with all sorts of talents to come
together. And that's the spirit of DataPortability - to bring
standards and people together and to put them in context to create
something greater than the sum of its parts.
Then there is the Public Google Group. This is where the documentation
is published and anyone and everyone can join in, comment on the work
being done, suggest changes, help each other and promote their own DP
> Once again, thanks for your time.
No worries - happy to help