Open ID is for geeks... Facebook and Twitter are not... and win!

Yesterday on LeWeb conference Michael Arrington interviewed guys from Facebook, MySpace and Linkedin (among others) about the quick adoption of Facebook connect as  a way to log in to different web sites without having to use new passwords... and he commented on some of the alternatives... and why they failed:


Facebook Connect has taken the Internet by storm - because it's not for geeks

Almost everyone has an account on Facebook. Chances are that many people started using the Internet because they wanted to connect to their friends via Facebook. Not everyone has an account on MySpace (I don't!)

This means your regular mum and dad are using Facebook... and they know how to log in there.

If you know how to log in to Facebook, you know how to log in elsewhere

This destroys the barrier of entry for people - no need to sign up again, just log in with Facebook. It makes the barrier of entry even lower and helps crossing the chasm of getting not only geeks but also regular people to use your startup.

Twitter's log in is 2nd in the race... Google Account is in the middle and MySpace login and OpenID have failed

Facebok and Twitter rule the social media now and everyone has an account on either one or the other or... both. Google Account is also a cool way to log in, but frankly, it's kind of spooky to use Google for everything we do online. It's enough they have my Gmail, Google Reader and Docs...

MySpace lost their momentum last year and this is why they lost to Facebook and Twitter.

OpenID is for geeks. A no-geek will not understand it and this is why the adoption of this "standard" failed in the long run. Mum and Dad will understand Facebook login, they do it every day. OpenID is not for them.

Facebook Connect or Twitter login coming to Nozbe?

Probably, I'll have to test it and see how it works for us but I'm considering it now. If it makes the barrier of entry lower for non-geeky users, I'll be happy to give it a shot. We don't have the timeline for this yet, but watch out as we make it happen over the course of next months.

I'll include Facebook connect and Twitter login to the new startup we're working on... probably on day one already.

Do you use your Facebook Connect or Twitter data to sign in to web apps? Do you use OpenID? What's your preference?

--> me I'm Michael Sliwinski and I'm an entrepreneur who's also the...
.. Founder of - a time and project management web application
.. Editor of Productive! Magazine - a global PDF publication on productivity
.. and a blogger as well as a producer of a weekly 2-minute Productive! show.

Posted on Thursday, December 10, 2009 (facebook,leweb,startup,twitter)

Like this post? Subscribe to my newsletter, and every 2 weeks you'll receive updates from me. You'll also get you my latest book for FREE as a thank-you: "No Office Apps: How the Nozbe team uses modern technologies to communicate better and get more done.".

Michael Sliwinski
Dec 10, 2009 16:42
One more thing - here's the link to the recorded "Platform" round-table where Michael Arrington is talking to Facebook, MySpace and Linkedin guys:

Dec 10, 2009 17:06
I use OpenID, but admittedly, I am a geek. Why do you think it has "failed"?
Michael Sliwinski
Dec 10, 2009 17:25
The idea of the post is that OpenID failed to reach mainstream, it's for geeks, facebook connect makes more sense to implement when you're a startup owner and want people to sign in without signing up and lower the barrier of entry. OpenID was a good idea and started a cool one-login movement, but Facebook connect or Twitter login just make more sense from the user point of view.

OpenID is abstract, Facebook or Twitter login is what people have... and they want to use it to log in to other services.

Stefano Ricciardi
Dec 10, 2009 17:55
Yes, I understand how Twitter and especially Facebook are more familiar with non-geek users.

However, sometimes you just cannot connect via Facebook or Twitter if you are inside a corporate proxy that bans those sites during working hours.

On the other hand, I would have had no problem authenticating with OpenID here if had been given a chance.

Michael Sliwinski
Dec 10, 2009 18:12
True that if Twitter or Facebook are blocked by corporate proxy, OpenID can be used. Or a traditional method of logging...

Anyway, I'm willing to give it a shot and see how this works and if really Twitter and Facebook will emerge as default logging method for many people and will lower barrier of entry to using my apps.