Ming the Mechanic
The NewsLog of Flemming Funch

Friday, March 19, 2004day link 

 BlogWalk 1.0
picture So, I spent the day at BlogWalk 1.0 here in Enschede, The Netherlands. We didn't really walk and we didn't particular blog much along the way either. But we met at the Telematica Institute and did Open Space and various kinds of group discussions, also over several meals. Just 17 people or so, which gave a good opportunity for staying relatively focused and getting to know each other. Subject mainly being weblogs in knowledge management contexts, but also weblogs in general. So, looking at what functions weblogs might play in institutions and enterprises, and what might be the obstacles to make it happen, or the steps and positioning that might make it work. Obviously the people who are in charge in many organizations have no clue what weblogs are, or, if they do, might have a lot of fears and concerns about how dangerous it would be if people would actually rather freely talk publically about what they do, and even mix it in with their personal life and other interests. What if they reveal company secrets, or make the organization look bad, and that kind of thing. There are problems like that, of defining the lines between private and public, what should be shared and what not, but mostly it is just that people don't understand how it works, and don't realize that it could be a powerful tool for information sharing and relationship building. And in many cases as effective a knowledge management tool as anything else that is out there. There are fancy KM systems that often are not that easy to use, or that stuff can get lost in easily. Whereas a weblog is rather easy, and you don't have to worry very much about where exactly a certain item fits, and you can usually find old items very easily when you need them. And weblogs build up relationships and one's relations help filter information, and various self-organizing things go on that are useful. But is hard to explain the blogosphere to somebody who's totally not tuned into that kind of things, and haven't tried it, and particularly to managers who're afraid of losing control. And, despite that most of the hardcore bloggers can see quite well how it can be beneficial for various kinds of organizations, there seems to be a scarcity of good studies or success stories to show as evidence. Which is important both for the academics studying the phenomenon, and for anybody who tries to introduce a tool like weblogging into an organization.

Anyway, a very enjoyable event with great people. You can find some comments from some of the other guys at TopicExchange.

These BlogWalk events are loosely related to and lead up to the next BlogTalk, which is a bigger event held in Vienna, next July 5-6. And I should be making it there this year.
[ | 2004-03-19 17:40 | 7 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

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