announced a major update to its API tonight that will allow developers to read and post status updates, links, and notes to Facebook. In addtion, Facebook now also allows third-party developers to create applications that can upload videos directly to a user's account. The service already had an API for uploading and viewing photos.Facebook
The company also announced that its users now share over 24 million links every month, and that more than 15 million of its users update their status every day.
As Nick O'Neill on the AllFacebook blog points out, this move can be seen as a direct attack against Twitter. The early success of Twitter, after all, was mostly based upon the availability of an API that allowed for the creation of a thriving ecosystem that went far beyond what Twitter's developers had originally envisioned.
Creating an Ecosystem
Looking at the announcement, Facebook clearly hopes that a similar ecosystem can develop around its new API. As an example, Facebook explains that it would now be very easy for a travel app to allow its users to create and share notes on Facebook with text, pictures, and videos.
Tearing Down the Wall
Facebook is slowly tearing down the wall around its silo and is starting to expose more of its data to the outside, which can only be a good thing. Just this week, Facebook also joined the OpenID Foundation. There are some legitimate questions about what this means for both OpenID and Facebook Connect, but it looks like Facebook is moving in the right direction.