I wrote up a post today for Om's site on the deal that is coming close to closing for international ads on Facebook - it's down to, obviously, Google and Microsoft.
I had a conversation with Om about it today and he urged me to consider Facebook as a specialized environment, like a game environment. It's a closed system - not exclusive, but with some gating; it's opt-in - people are there because they want to be there and they do invest some time and, sometimes, money there. And therefore it may not be the best place for traditional impressions-based advertising, which is also coming under fire recently as being too untrackable.
Om and I talked about how one would use the power of social connections to leverage advertising in a way that reinforces those bonds. I think Valleywag got it right when they said the deal is about more than money. It's about the future evolution of the internet and advertising. And as one smart commenter pointed out, "On Facebook people might be looking to buy iPod exactly because their friends have one."
What can games - particularly online games with friends lists, etc - learn from this?