Monday, October 18th, 2010

charmian: a snowy owl (Default)
The discussion on whether openID is undesirable seems to have picked up a bit here.

In general, though, there seem to be two potential ways openID may be undesirable under discussion.

The first is that openID accounts may be bots/spammers. However, according to what people have said, on DW openID accounts haven't been a major source of spam. Also, both on LJ and on DW, an unvalidated openID account is considered equivalent to an anonymous account, but an openID account which has been validated is considered equivalent to a member. So, just like a regular account, an validated openID account is presumably more likely to have a real person behind it. Therefore, I can't really see much difference, anti-spam-wise, between the two.

The second is that treating validated openID accounts as equivalent to members constitutes a security flaw. Coming from only the LJ-perspective, I don't agree with this either, because restricting comment to members only strikes me as more of an anti-spam measure than a security one. If anyone can sign up for an LJ account at any time, it doesn't make sense to me to consider LJ users at large a 'trusted group,' since any person can sign up for many accounts. Also, LJ doesn't require people to provide any public information about themselves to other users, so I can't really say that making an LJ account makes a user more 'known.'

I also think that the LJ devs didn't want to encourage users to consider LJ members as a 'trusted group,' as shown by their refusal to implement 'members-only security level.' IIRC this was dismissed as 'security by obscurity.'

(That said, I'm not so sure people are unable to navigate the concept of members-only-security as much as the devs thought they would be able to. It seems to work out ok on social networks which have this feature. However, I would be strongly against this on DW UNLESS they stop having invite codes, in which case I'd personally not really care one way or the other.)

(Also, I'm against the idea of a members-only (excluding openID) commenting level on DW as long as invite codes remain. If there's open registration like LJ has, I have no problem with it.)

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