Many bloggers have weighed in on the Enterprise 2.0 vibe, its relation to Web 2.0 and social media, and its much-maligned predecessor, Knowledge Management. Rightly or wrongly, KM initiatives were often associated with failed corporate portals, stale company intranets, lackluster training programs, and cumbersome Document Management, Records Management, and Content Management tools.
Gordon and I have deliberately avoided mentioning Knowledge Management on our website. We think the term is poison, as are most of the other industry acronym-fads ending in “M”.
So it surprised us when the Burton Group’s Mike Gotta announced the publication of a new document dealing with Enterprise 2.0 called Collaboration and Knowledge Management Renaissance. The summary he gives on his blog is intriguing, and no doubt the document would make an interesting read (if you can afford it.) But is E2.0 just a rehash of previously failed “M” stuff?
John Tropea talks about E2.0 being Knowledge Management 2.0 with a greater emphasis on corporate culture. Lawrence Hart thinks knowledge management is marching along. Bex Huff says forget knowledge management, we need context management. Venkatesh Rao writes that the terms social media and knowledge management reflect a generational divide. It’s a long, detailed article that provoked strong reactions.
These are just a few of the items we’ve read over the past few months. I’m sure you could find many, many more blog posts that fall within the “Oh no, here we go again!” to “This time, it’ll be different!” spectrum. (Please feel free to list any of your favorites in the comments section below.)
I think it’s good that the debate over these large-scale systems is simmering away. There’s a widespread perception that most of these tools didn’t deliver what they promised, but I haven’t seen much analysis of what went wrong. Most industry analysts simply latched on to the next catch-phrase, E2.0. I suppose we’re guilty of that, too.