Facebook's Leaky Product Team Are Accidental PR Geniuses

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On Wednesday evening, popular TechCrunch blogger MG Siegler posted two stories that provided a first look at Facebook's hush-hush attempt to develop its own version of Apple's App Store. The stories quickly made their way to the site's most read module. "If there's anything [people love]," the Atlantic Wire's Adam Clark Estes wrote in a post about how smart it was of Facebook's PR team to leak the information, "it's reading about Facebook leaks. Naturally."

"Project Spartan" illustrates well how Facebook's chatty product team is actually a rather underhanded and potentially fantastic PR strategy. Basically, Spartan is a strategy to develop a Facebook version of Apple's App Store that will skirt around the restrictive rules imposed on developers by Steve Jobs. The new platform will work entirely within the mobile browser and applications supposedly already in production by companies like Zynga and The Huffington Post. What's in it for Facebook? A share of the estimated $16 billion, users are spending in the iPhone app store. It's next level stuff that makes Facebook's virtual currency suddenly super viable:

Imagine loading up the mobile web version of Facebook and finding a drop-down for a new type of app. Clicking on one of the apps loads it (from whatever server it's on depending on the app-maker), and immediately a Facebook wrapper is brought in to surround the app. This wrapper will give the app some basic Facebook functionality, as well as the ability to use key Facebook elements -- like Credits.

Read the full story at The Atlantic Wire.

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