Google is upping the ante in the social media realm by releasing a platform tomorrow which will allow developers to create applications for numerous social networks. So far, they've signed up Friendster, LinkedIn and Hi5. You'll notice that Facebook and MySpace aren't on that list. That's probably because, come November 5, Google is set to relaunch their own social networking site, Orkut.
What's specifically interesting about this approach is that they are using open source as a business model. After years of being the underdog, it's not the competitive edge. And that's ok by me. Let's open-source ourselves in a competitive frenzy until data is owned by users, not corporations. Then we'll experience what will hopefully be a true "free" market.