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Apple's Ping Social Network hits some growing pains

If you jumped into Ping as soon as it was available, like we did, you were able to connect to your friends with Facebook.  That capability soon disappeared, making everyone wonder what happened.  AllthingsD got the story:

[Facebook] essentially denied Apple’s Ping access to application programming interfaces that would allow it to search for an iTunes user’s friends on Facebook who also had signed up for Ping.

Normally, this API access is open and does not require permission.

That is, unless some entity wants to access it a lot. In that case, Facebook requires an agreement for reasons primarily centered on protection of Facebook user data and, of course, infrastructure impact.

With 160 million iTunes users, that could mean a possibility of a lot of impact.

Sources said Apple (AAPL) and Facebook conducted negotiations about an agreement, but could not come to terms.

So did Zuck rain a world of hurt down on Jobs?

Not really.

Facebook knows that Ping not only looks like Facebook but it carves a large chunk out of what Facebook does and plans to do.  They have no intention of easily allowing Apple to use their social graph to replicate their capabilities on Ping.

You think Facebook has any plans to sell music using reccomendations?  I’m sure it is on the agenda.  Therefore, Zuckerberg isn’t going to just give away the store to Apple.

But does Apple really need Facebook to sign up users and make?  Judging from the fact that Lady Gaga has a couple hundred thousand followers less than 24 hours after Ping was released, I’d say not.

Even if Apple and Facebook never agree to terms to the API, Apple can go in the backdoor.  For instance a “Share” my profile link with your friends accomplishes the same thing.  Look for that button in Ping and your friends’ Facebook feed.

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