Jesse Farmer — the Facebook developer who last week wrote about slowing Facebook app development — now tells CNET that Google’s (GOOG) OpenSocial, whose members include MySpace (NWS), has cut into Facebook developer activity:
And the kicker came in early February, Farmer explained, when “OpenSocial stopped sucking as much.” Medium-size and large social networks like MySpace.com and Hi5 started welcoming developers to their OpenSocial-compatible platforms, and suddenly there was more to do than build applications on Facebook.
Evan Steinberg, another developer, chimes in too:
“The Facebook Platform was a huge introduction and I think we’re all grateful for its existence. But the Web is opening up and developers are beginning to shop around. Saying you’re building a Facebook app isn’t particularly novel anymore.”
How can Facebook keep developers’ attention? If need be, of course, it could always join OpenSocial. But in the meantime, we think it will continue making smaller “openness” tweaks, like its recently announced Facebook Connect and Google Friend Connect moves, both of which allow users to take Facebook data and put it on other sites.