We could build an open Twitter, but would anyone use it?

As Twitter clamps down on what third-party developers can do with the network, some have proposed creating an open-source alternative — but would enough users switch to a new network? Others who have tried such a move have largely failed to gain much traction.

R.I.P. Diaspora Co-Founder Ilya Zhitomirskiy

Ilya Zhitomirskiy, one of the co-founders of Diaspora, has passed away at the tender age of 21, according to a report on Techcrunch. No further details were available. Our hearts and prayers go to his family, friends and the Diaspora community.

Inside Pivotal Labs, the Agile Force Behind Twitter and Groupon

Pivotal Labs is a name that comes up often in regards to web startups like Diaspora, Twitter, Groupon and Gowalla, but it’s sort of an enigma. We paid a visit to Pivotal’s San Francisco office to see what it looks like and find out more.

Today in Social

There’s more buzz around Diaspora – the open-source social networking technology sometimes referred to as the “anti-Facebook” – than you might expect. The Diaspora concept originated with a small group of NYU students fed up with Facebook’s privacy snafus. They released source code yesterday. Diaspora really is a network, rather than a site. Each user has to host his own “seed,” from which other sites or apps pull elements of his social graph – all under his own control. That’s intriguing, but sounds like consumer poison, unless an ecosystem of simpler services emerge around it. But it might be just the thing for corporate social networking.

Should Facebook Be Worried About Diaspora?

As Facebook has drawn fire from critics over the way it handles user information, interest in finding an alternative has grown to the point where a project to create an open-source social network raised $200,000 in a matter of weeks. But does it have a chance?