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Where content meets technology

Mar 05, 2005

Corporate Use of Blogs and Wikis

Lauren Wood, of The Gilbane Report has an excellent introductory article on the corporate use of Blogs and Wikis (factoid: did you know that "Wiki" is a Hawaiian word for "hurry" or "quick"?). The article gives real world examples of companies using blogs and Wiki's for internal and external communication purposes.

I agree with Lauren that these tools have great potential in the enterprise. Blogs and Wiki's support information sharing needs that get miss-handled by email. My metaphor for email is a big heavy crescent wrench that gets used for everything from whacking something like a hammer to tightening and loosening the smallest of nuts -in the process, destroying both the wrench and the things you are trying to fix with it. Email is (miss)used as a file system, database, audit trail, and discussion tool. As a result, almost every one I know complains about how unmanageable their email box is.

Wiki's and blogs are a happy medium between totally unstructured email and extremely structured and formal content management solutions. Like email, these tools give users a low hurdle (technical, organizational, and process) to contribute valuable information. However, unlike email, information within these systems is less vulnerable to being lost and is more accessible to a wider audience - especially when coupled with a good search engine.

The article also discusses the risks of using Wiki's and links to a very good blog posting by Leigh Dodds about how to make your corporate Wiki succeed.