Google Friend Connect Integrates Twitter, Gets Tons Of Press

-Friend Connect Icon-Facebook must feel good. The day after Yahoo! announced that they will soon implement Facebook Connect across all their properties, Google announced the integration of Twitter into Google Friend Connect. While there are millions of users who have logged in through Google Friend Connect, it’s somewhat of a backward model for taking on Facebook in the ongoing identity wars.

Google Friend Connect is going after the long tail, while Facebook is going after the entire graph. To date there has not been a single mainstream media property to implement Google Friend Connect. Instead,millions of smaller sites have each implemented Google Friend Connect widgets, similar to Fan Box that Facebook already offers.

Those big name implementations of Facebook Connect however keeps the company’s identity platform in the press day after day, while Google Friend Connect gets brief spurts of attention. One can understand why Google feels so strongly about competing in the online identity wars. The primary reason is of course that the company doesn’t have an effective system of determining who our friends are (aside from their email services of course).

While it’s difficult to dismiss Google Friend Connect given their wide reach, the service doesn’t appear to be as strong of a competitor given their loosely structured data. While I’m sure there are plenty of people who would say Google Friend Connect is a formidable competitor, I would argue that they are running a distant second to Facebook.

For those who think that a distributed web could win, I’d say “Fat chance!” The main reason being that Facebook has the largest representation of the social graph and the more people they have, the greater the incentive is to join. This snowballs at a rapid pace, and right now there’s nobody close to matching Facebook’s image of the social graph.

Rather than ramble on about why Facebook will win the identity war, I’d simply emphasize how this is clearly a last ditch effort by Google despite the millions of people that have implemented the Friend Connect service. While implementing Twitter as another identity service is a useful feature, Google is essentially attempting to piece together a group of widgets to take on Facebook.

Do you think my dismissal of Google Friend Connect is an unfair assessment?