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Identity Panel at Supernova, or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love User Centric Identity

The Identity Panel just wrapped up:
(John Clippinger, Kaliya Hamlin, Reid Hoffman, Marcien Jenckes, Jyri Engestrom)
As our lives increasingly straddle the physical and the virtualworlds, the management of identity becomes increasingly crucial fromboth a business and a social standpoint.  The future of e-commerce anddigital life will require identity mechanisms that are scalable,secure, widely-adopted, user-empowering, and at least as richlytextured as their offline equivalents.  This session will examine howonline identity can foster relationships and deeper value creation.
It was interesting to see the reactions from the crowd and on the #supernova backchannel.  There's a lot of reactions of the form "but I want to be anonymous" though what they really mean is psuedoanonymous.  It's not really made clear that OpenID enables all those scenarios.  There were objections to calling things like OpenID "identity" and maybe some people think that's something of a meme grab.

OpenID is definitely very simple, very focused on doing just one part of identity.  It enables the unbundling of identity, authentication, and services.  It lets you say "this X is the same as this other X from last week, or from this other site" in a verifiable way that's under the control of X.  Is there a better word for this than "identity"?

Also, every discussion of OpenID should start out with a simple demo:  I type =john.panzer at any web site, and it lets me in.  Then talk about the underpinnings and the complications after the demo.

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