I ran across a link to the Global Trust Exchange (GTX) on Howard Rheingold's site in an old post. It caught my eye because I've been very interested in how trust works and evolves between people. It's an integral part of what makes eBay work, obviously. And it's critical for effective communities.
Now, granted, the GTX site is in its infancy, and a lot of details haven't been exposed or possibly even worked out. But I have to say that on the surface, this effort seems to be lacking in something very important: a reason for being.
Networks usually evolve around a particular purpose. They don't arise just because they're a good idea. Over the years, I've been particularly fond of pointing out that every town seems to have a Community Center, but people rarely seem to actually go there. The existence of a Community Center doesn't mean that the community is effective, or even what we would consider a "true" community.