corante ssa: "is business ready for social software?"

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This is a panel that Stowe Boyd is leading, with Seth Goldstein and Kaliya Hamlin.

Seth says that the answer to the question of "Why now? Why is business now noticing and implementing social software solutions?" is three letters: API. Says that sites like and Flickr only got interesting/popular when developers were able to create things using the API. (Not sure I completely agree with those examples, but I agree in concept with the importance of APIs. What he's not acknowledging though, and what I think is also important, is ease of use and design simplicity.)

(This is being held in a large law school lecture room, theatre style, which is not well-suited to audience engagement. These kinds of rooms trip my "bored student" switch, and I find it much harder to stay engaged.)

Seth quotes Josh Schachter describing as "crystallized attention." (Ah...just realized that Seth's the president of

Stowe asks if we're going to see a backlash against these social, collaborative tools in the enterprise--will employers see this as "wasted time" because the ROI is less explicit? (My unspoken comment: We're already seeing that backlash with email. Also, we need research that makes that ROI more explicit--how does the organization (not just the individual) benefit from use of these tools.

Seth: We all work for Google, whether we know it or not.

Comment from Adam Greene in the audience--quotes someone as saying that "tags are about memory, not about categorization." Do you take the "folks" out of folksonomy when you impose tagging "rules."

(The backchannel discussion is becoming more interesting than the panel discussion...not because the panel is boring, but because conversation is inherently more interesting that presentation in most cases. The exceptions are speakers like David Weinberger who can really grab your focus.)

Kaliya talks about the "Hollywood model" of teams that come together for a project and then disband and go to other projects. Stowe asks how many people in the audience are working in that mode now, and a number of hands go up. In the backchannel, the question of whether this is necessarily a good thing is raised--as is the fact that key players in those Hollywood groups are unionized in order to ensure that they're compensated appropriately.

Seth talks about AttentionTrust--says it's founded on the idea that we all are entitled to a record of our own attention. Google, Amazon, etc are doing an excellent job of recording our actions and attention data; consumers haven't had good ownership of their own data. (I'm not convinced yet that these attention.xml files are much more than a way to make it easier for more companies to have more data about me...)

[I apologize to the panel for not better representing their remarks. Between jetlag and room architecture I'm having a hard time staying focused.]

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This page contains a single entry by Liz Lawley published on November 15, 2005 7:47 AM.

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