It seems that Jason is annoyed because he's run into something that's rampant in the on-line services world: lock-in.
I get a lot of inbound email and I like to upload those contacts to LinkedIn every couple of months so I can figure out which of my contacts are in there. However, as best I can tell (and I could be wrong here) the only way to get your contacts out of GMAIL is to cut and paste the “All Contacts” sheet. That is so broke… I mean, how much work would it take for Google to put a “Save .CSV or Excel” file link? You could write that code in like two seconds.
Seriously, this may be purely an oversight in the case of the GMail (BETA) interface. After all, it's a beta. They'll add/fix stuff. But it's hardly surprising to see this sort of thing. Givng a user the ability to collect all their marbles and go home is a scary thing for some companies and their product managers (or the business folks who really pull the strings).
You can't get an OPML export of your My Yahoo! subscriptions either. Someday it'll probably happen, but for now there's no easy way to get that data either.
There are countless examples of this on-line. GMail and My Yahoo! are hardly the worst out there. What's the worst you've seen?
Posted by jzawodn at June 11, 2005 08:04 PM