Tweetdeck has announced something called deck.ly, which promises to let you tweet in more than 140 characters, something I welcome.
2. Is this a proprietary thing, i.e. what if one of their competitors would like to offer the same service. Do they have to create something completely incompatible, or can they interoperate in some way. In other words have they created yet-another silo (boo). Is this just an attempt to break out of the grip of Twitter, Inc or is it something bigger with a future beyond one vendor?
One thing that it definitely is -- an awful name. Sickly pops to mind. Dickly. Deadly. For a short URL (presumably why they chose this name), "deck" seems pretty long. And the fact that it's the end of their product name pretty much nails the answer to #2. Even if they offer an API, it's hard to imagine their competitors signing up for a service that's named after another vendor's product.