There's lots of talk these days about Facebook being the next Microsoft. Is it? The main question for Facebook, as it is with nearly every interesting web idea, is how they will make money. CNN Money pointed out today that Facebook has taken an interesting route to profitability: by opening up the doors and letting developers make applications that users want. In some ways, Facebook is akin to a real-estate developer. They own the property and are fostering other people to create the businesses on it. The internal competition is clearly good for Facebook--when applications die because of errors or lameness, Facebook isn't as fault. Their brand is protected, while developers take all the risk and engage in the competition.
Matthew Lee Anderson is the Founder and Lead Writer of Mere Orthodoxy. He is the author of Earthen Vessels: Why Our Bodies Matter to our Faith and The End of Our Exploring: A Book about Questioning and the Confidence of Faith. Follow him on Twitter or on Facebook.