Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Social Jargon: Scraping

Scraping. Automatically harvesting information from another site and using the results on your own site - sometimes for nefarious activities. Most Web 2.0 companies prefer to use the respectable term 'importing' to describe the same activity.

Scraping is at the heart of the Web 2.0 revolution - and represents its sharing spirit. Most Web 2.0 giants take a non-proprietary stance towards their data, in fact, even encouraging outside developers to access it to foster increased inbound traffic.

Scraping is what Zillow is doing when it pulls map information from several partners - Navteq, GlobeXplorer, Proxix - and combines it with real estate data from public records to estimate what a house is worth. Scraping is what Facebook does too when it prompts you to share your email login information so it can check your address list and invite contacts who aren't yet signed into the network.

[Original pic by Legozilla]