OpenID is one of the technologies I've been coming across repeatedly in the past year or so, that very much feel like the right kind of response to things that are a constant ache in today's internet. In particular, it's a pain in the butt for a consumer to manage six thousand logins to individual services, and as a result, it's almost as much of a pain for a consumer service (like Habbo) to demand logins; no one really wants to create yet another. I'm pretty convinced that we don't really need to have a database full of passwords, and that we'd be better off without it.

What we need is a way to identify that whoever visited us before and wanted us to call her PrettyGirl87 last week is the same person who wants to be known by this name this week - and we need to know that because our other users might care about a thing like that. We also want to be able to reach the users later, so we'd like to know their email address, or some other means of communication.

Neither of these things actually requires us to ask her to come up with and remember Yet Another Password, if some other means of identifying the user existed. OpenID might be an answer, or at least part of one. So I'm one of many considering whether to support OpenID. I'm also thinking whether we should provide OpenID identity for those users who'd actually like to use Habbo to identify themselves (which would be wonderful for completely different kinds of reasons). But both of those questions really are quite clear: yes, we should. The difficult question is, should we do that instead of something else? Because that's the question that faces anything we might want to implement. And I haven't seen an argument convincing enough to put OpenID on the top of the pile yet. The demand probably isn't going to come from users - but what would be the thing to swing the balance?