Sad Demise of a Promising Service

Cliqset

On Saturday I talked with Matthias Pfefferle, CTO at Yiid, about Cliqset and Status.net at Barcamp Darmstadt. We agreed upon that both companies were among the most technical advanced startups around. So it was a big surprise yesterday to read that Cliqset’s founders will leave the company which means the service won’t be developed any longer. What a coincidence!

For those who don’t know, Cliqset is a social aggregator and sharing platform that is build on numerous open standards. If you want to see cool and cutting-edge stuff like OpenID, Activity Streams, Webfinger, Pubsubhubbub, OAuth, and the Salmon protocol all in one place, Cliqset is the platform to go. Its founders Darren Bounds and Charlie Cauthen adopted those techniques always quite early and not only provided a tool for users to share content but also for other developers to test against, to co-operate with, and to leverage.

Cliqset proves that open standards work, not only as single protocols but also combined in one product. It just makes me smile to be able to comment on Google Buzz posts in Cliqset and see the comments both in Cliqset and Google Buzz. It’s geeky stuff, yeah. But it’s cool. And most importantly, it doesn’t mean that open standards have become irrelevant as someone mentioned in an email today. A service is no more, not standards.

So it’s sad to see Cliqset go. Like I mentioned, there are not many companies left – at least not ones I’m aware of – that leverage standards the way Cliqset does. So hopefully, its founders will seize other chances and continue to support open standards and hence a more open and free web.

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