This c|net story is the epitome of everything that's wrong with tech journalism. No combination of RSS and Semantic Web and Web Services and Knowledge Representation and Intelligent Agents and Lizard Necromancy can keep this kind of dross from dropping with a soggy thud in the middle of your attention span if you, for love or money, keep an eye on tech news.
So, Passport is going to get a Web Services stamp? I've been sufficiently revolted by the idea of a technology vendor (any vendor) getting into the identity-management business that I've tried to ignore Passport. But this kind of sounds interesting: does this mean they're going to turn it into a distributed service that anyone can run? They'll base it on SOAP? They'll pick up something like Dave Winer's You Know Me button idea? Interesting...
But the story isn't. It'll “eventually work with” WSDL and SOAP and WS-Security, said Microsoft, declining to say when, says c|net. Then there's a few paragraphs of history that we already know about the late unlamented HailStorm service and the EU privacy legislation and so on. Er... this is news? Spare me, life is too short.
Now if people starting putting per-link author information in their RSS feeds, then aggregators could be taught to filter out contributions from authors with records for this kind of vacuous puffery.