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Programming Social Applications by Jonathan LeBlanc

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OExchange: Building a Social Sharing Graph

OExchange is an open protocol that can be used to share any URL-based content with any service on the Web. Put simply, OExchange is trying to build a standard way to share content from a publisher site to many different service providers like Twitter, Yahoo!, and Google (among others).

In a traditional integration model, if you have a site that includes content that you would like your users to be able to share with other services, you would need to integrate with these services individually. Normally, this would mean implementing just the top sharing services, such as Twitter, and would likely involve many tedious integrations just to make those few services available to your users. The questions that OExchange seeks to answer are:

  • Why are we still integrating with services individually?

  • Why don’t we have a standard way to send updates to a sharing source?

  • Why can’t we add new services dynamically?

OExchange attempts to address these questions by delivering a standardized mechanism for sharing among content systems, giving the service provider more content and the publisher new outlets for its content.

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