Last week marked the launch of an exciting new free service from Six Apart: Blog It. Powered by Movable Type's sibling service TypePad, Blog It is a Facebook application that lets you post to your Movable Type blog (as well as most other common blogging platforms) from right within Facebook. But a demonstration shows this better than words ever could:
Best of all, Blog It makes it easy to use a social network like Facebook to alert and notify your friends when you've published something new, combining the power of Movable Type's publishing capabilities with the distribution and connection of a popular social network. In that way, Blog It acts as the perfect counterpart to Movable Type's exclusive Action Streams, the free plugin that brings all of your social networking activity to your Movable Type blog.
All of this is part of a larger effort for the Movable Type platform, which encompasses these two-way connections with social networks, powerful new standards like OpenID and OAuth for connecting sites together, and rich integration with exciting new web services like Yahoo Fire Eagle.
In combination, these features form a capability that could be called unified social networking: A unique set of Movable Type features that recognize that we all belong to many different services and social networks, and that a blog is the natural home for integrating those services together in an easy and open way. The goal? To give you control over your social networks. ReadWriteWeb, which is powered by Movable Type, published an astute analysis of Blog It:
SixApart is a leading company in the field of social graph experimentation and the most outspoken participating company willing to be critical of some of Google's efforts like OpenSocial. BlogIt is interesting beyond its basic functionality because it can tie together confirmed accounts on Facebook, outside blogs and Twitter - then place that information in the hands of a company dedicating significant time and resources to leveraging such information in the interests of users. BlogIt may be just a beachhead landed in the hostile territory not of Facebook, but of online identity chaos in general.
Of course, this is just the beginning. We're only on the first version of Blog It, and Action Streams is just getting started even with over 50 social networking services already supported. And all of this is just the latest step in the vision our CEO Chris Alden laid out for Movable Type in 2008: Open, Powerful and Easy. We can't wait to work with our amazing community to define what comes next.