I rarely (if ever) blog about online identities or OpenID, and if you had asked me a year ago about OpenID, or any other technology designed to provide a single point of authentication where the user manages their own identity, I would have responded with something like “dream on”, “when pigs fly” or some other “no way in hell will that ever really happen” smartypants answer.
Maybe I have been spending too much time talking to people like Scott Kveton and Kaliya Hamlin (AKA Identity Woman), but I am becoming a true believer and advocate for identity management. With the recent proliferation of web 2.0 sites, an easy way to manage my online identity without needing a billion username / password combos is very appealing. Yes, I know that wishful thinking will not make something come true; however, OpenID has made an amazing amount of traction over the past few months.
Now, JanRain is making it even easier for companies / websites to use OpenID with their new affiliate program:
I am excited to announce the launch of our Affliate Program aimed at sites that want to use OpenID but don’t want to have to manage an OpenID server or their users’ identities. Now with just a few clicks of your mouse you can have a place for your users to get OpenID’s. In addition, sites will get added to our ever-growing directory of sites that support OpenID. There are hundreds of sites that support OpenID today and that number is growing everyday.
By hosting identities for end-users we’re hoping that sites that support OpenID can focus on their “main thing”; blogging, photo sharing, wiki’s, etc. OpenID lowers the barrier to engagement for users and increases stickiness on sites; no more forgotten usernames or passwords. If you’re a developer and interested in OpenID enabling your site, head over to our sister site www.openidenabled.com and learn more about the open source libraries, patches and tools available for making that happen. (Quote from Scott Kveton’s Blog)
I have an OpenID through ClaimID, and I would like to see more websites start to support it. It really is a win-win for both sides: ease of use for the consumer and less overhead for companies / individuals maintaining sites requiring authentication.