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Facebook F8 Conference Leaves Developers Wanting More

FacebookThe Facebook F8 developer conference is underway and the company has already announced the launch of Facebook Connect and a new “Great Apps” program to showcase and reward standout applications.

But while the announcements, especially the new tiered app system, should help cut away some of the spam and malware apps, the conference is also notable for what Facebook hasn’t done.

The two big absences are the missing payment system and the lack of an advertising system for developers. Many had speculated that Facebook would announce a system where developers would be able monetize their applications, but so far that remains a developer pipe dream.

For the time being anyway, it would appear that developers will have to wait for their payday; this year’s F8 is all about the recent Facebook re-design and the various ways that will impact the platform — including the new application policing system — rather than any new whiz-bang features.

Also interesting is Facebook’s failure to address two huge MySpace announcements in the past months — the Gears-based message system and this week’s OpenID announcement. Facebook’s own messaging system is essentially useless and MySpace has been getting some warm press coverage for its decision to embrace OpenID.

As for Facebook Connect, there’s plenty of partners on board for the launch — Six Apart, Digg, Plaxo, Twitter and more are all at work on new apps that leverage Connect.

Users will likely be happy to know that they will be able to bring even more outside data into Facebook, just don’t expect to ever get it out again.

Facebook Connect is essentially a sinkhole for all your RSS feeds and outside content. As is Facebook’s habit, there are plenty of ways to consume data within the garden walls, but no way to get it out again.

As for the numbers, contrary to popular belief, Facebook still trails way behind MySpace in terms of traffic. According to Hitwise Facebook holds a mere 17 percent market share, while MySpace is sitting pretty at 72 percent.

Read/Write Web has a nice breakdown of the numbers, including the secondary players like Bebo and others, but the short story is that for advertisers, MySpace is still the place to be.

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