MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif.--()--Today Meebo introduced Extended Authentication (XAuth), an open technology platform designed to increase social engagement by making it easier for users to connect to their friends no matter where they are online. Meebo has been joined in the XAuth initiative by major internet and social services like Google, Microsoft Corp., MySpace, Yahoo!, JanRain, DISQUS, and Gigya. The XAuth framework will be made available via open source and will be refined throughout the year. Further collaboration with additional partners, the Open Identity Exchange (OIX) and the OpenID Foundation is planned to facilitate an open consortium to host the XAuth technology.
“Enabling users to communicate and share across any website, with anyone, in a secure fashion, is simply a natural progression to the Web’s social phenomenon”
XAuth is designed to help publishers and providers of social applications balance two things: the need to give users a diverse set of choices for logging into their experience with a third-party identity provider, and the need to also ensure that sign-in and registration flows remain as simple and elegant as possible. The XAuth specification addresses this issue by enabling the ability to recognize when a visitor is already logged into a communication and social networking service of their choice, such as Google, Microsoft Corp., MySpace, Yahoo! and others, and then making it easy for the user to utilize that existing channel to share content, links or feeds with their friends, use instant messenger or e-mail, and otherwise participate in the site’s community. With XAuth, publishers will be able to escape the handicap of not having insight into their users’ preferred social services and instead can present their users with a host of relevant options. This will lead to increased engagement, relevancy and participation in the social ecosystem for web site publishers, service providers, and users.
“Enabling users to communicate and share across any website, with anyone, in a secure fashion, is simply a natural progression to the Web’s social phenomenon,” said Seth Sternberg, co-founder and CEO, Meebo. “Before XAuth, publishers had to play a guessing game as to which social experiences their users wanted. XAuth solves this problem for both the publisher and the user, and we’re excited that we can extend this capability to all of our publishers like The Hollywood Reporter (THR.com).”
“We’re pleased to hear that XAuth will enable us to provide a better social experience to visitors of THR.com,” said Alex Boyce, Director of Online for The Hollywood Reporter. “Providing visitors with an opportunity to interact with their most relevant friends on multiple social networks while they engage with our content is a huge entryway to social web.”
One example of a use-case for XAuth would be if a user frequents Gmail and MySpace (services from providers) and visits a website that has a Meebo Bar, the bar will recognize the user via XAuth. If the user then clicks on the Meebo Bar, it will prompt him or her to connect to friends on Gmail and MySpace – the two services with the most relevance to the particular user in this case.
“XAuth is a wonderful example of how much value lies in being able to extend trust and relationships across different websites,” said Don Thibeau, President and Chairman of Open Identity Exchange (OIX). “We are impressed at how quickly Meebo and their partners have brought this initiative to life, and we look forward to exploring how OIX can facilitate XAuth growing into a widely accepted and trusted cross-site framework.”
Further details on the XAuth technology are available at: http://xauth.org/info and demos of XAuth are available at: http://meebo.com/xauth. XAuth will offer users controls through their site at: http://xauth.org.
Meebo enables over 100 million users to instantly connect, share, and communicate with all of their friends. Because Meebo integrates all social network and communication channels into a single, simple-to-use interface, users can easily share content and communicate in real time with the people who matter to them. Meebo connects people to their friends on the thousands of websites that have installed the Meebo bar, on mobile devices, and at Meebo.com. Meebo was founded in 2005 and is a privately held company headquartered in Mountain View, CA. For more information, visit www.meebo.com.
About The Hollywood Reporter
The Hollywood Reporter (THR) is the leading destination and most-widely trusted resource for entertainment news, reviews, videos and analysis. Founded in 1930, THR offers exclusive, multiplatform coverage of film, television, and international news, plus extensive photo galleries and reporting of industry events and festivals such as the Oscars®, Emmys, Sundance, Cannes and more. Our unparalleled content reaches the entire entertainment marketplace-allowing industry leaders, influencers and consumers to access the information they want whenever, wherever.
About Open Identity Exchange
Open Identity Exchange (OIX) is a neutral, non-profit, multi-channel provider of certification trust frameworks for open identity technologies. OIX was founded by grants from the OpenID and Information Card Foundations and support from companies including Google, PayPal, Equifax, VeriSign, Verizon, CA, and Booz Allen Hamilton.
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