Kara Swisher over at All Things Digital has some exclusive insights into the Ping / Facebook controversy. For those of you who don’t know, Apple recently announced Ping, a service that it’s positioning as a social network for music lovers (like what we need is ANOTHER social network).
Now social networks are pretty worthless until lots of people are members, so it’s imperitive to make it as simple as possible for new members to recruit their friends and make them members too. Historically, this has been done by importing email address books, but now there’s a new way to find people’s friends: Facebook. Facebook even gives developers an API so that applications can programmatically get your list of friends – perfect for a service like Ping to ramp up its member numbers.
So if you’ve been unsure as to whether Facebook really enforces their rules, the answer is yes they do, and they will act quickly. If your application puts undue strain on the Facebook servers you DO need to work with them to ensure that everyone remains happy. If you’re not sure about how much server interaction your application has with Facebook, you can test your Facebook application with a tool like FriendRunner.