It has been an extremely long time since my last post... I am just coming off of successful left hip surgery January 2.
<span style="font-weight: bold">Social networking</span>
is that it's been focused on people connecting to people that they already know. Not that there's anything wrong with that, I love to find the people I know online but for me it's usually a quick, "I found you, cool now we're connected." I'm sure that there are stories out there -- particularly with job searches -- where social networking has been instrumental. Outside that, it seems that more often it's card collecting. I can see that Jill knows Steve but I'm no closer to knowing Steve, I just know that Jill knows him. I do like knowing there's a bag of potential contacts, even if I never use them.
<span style="font-weight: bold">Social Bookmarks</span>
have a great purpose, too. I can see what other people mark as interesting content. I have no connection to them personally, but social bookmarking allows me to snoop "good readers" and track their information consumption. I follow the tags and feeds of a number of people but I have never said one word to them. I enjoy reading over their shoulder, though. It saves me a lot of time.
<span style="font-weight: bold">Social Productivity</span>
is different than social networking or social bookmarking: it's about getting work done outside the team of like-minded people you work with everyday. With social productivity, an idea is introduced and all sorts of people get to chime in on it. These could be people you work with a lot, people you've never worked with or even people outside your company. Now all of a sudden your idea has been developed openly by all sorts of people who bring their own, valuable perspective. You can evolve those ideas into all sorts of collaborative or locked content but thanks to the social media, your original idea is maybe much stronger now.
There are many questions to be explored and answered. How do we get this to work in your company? Inside the firewall? Look there are many items that work for our outside interests. Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn do some of the social networking. Do we need this inside the firewall? Are people going to take advantage of it? Will this just be an increase in email, IM and phone traffic?
How do we move forward to the real deal of getting work done. I spent some time with folks that provide tools in almost all of these spaces. In theory and watching them demonstrate how they work and can work - all look good. Basically, the real meat on this bone is how will we change our behaviors to make this successful?