5 Reasons Why Internet-based Social Bookmarking is not Suitable for Enterprise

You may wonder why you should invest in an enterprise bookmarking application when you can simply use Delicious, StumbleUpon or any other of numerous Internet-based social bookmarking services. – But, do you use Gmail or Hotmail as your corporate email? Of course not!
Here are 5 reasons why the Internet-based social bookmarking is not suitable for an enterprise:

  1. You want your proprietary, sensitive data behind your corporate firewall.
    No enterprise can risk keeping its business data on a public server. –Not even when the public host claims to be well protected. Even the leading networks, such as Google’s Gmail, Microsoft’s Hotmail or Facebook, are often hacked and their security is breached with catastrophic consequences. In such cases apologies are issued, but there are no guarantees, there is no compensation for damages. The only place for the corporate knowledge is safe behind the corporate firewalls.
  2. You want full control over your data.
    Security and privacy are not the only issues concerning data protection. You also need to back up your data regularly, archive it and then retrieve it from archives, ensure its integrity, maintain its usefulness… Some day in the future you may even need to merge it with additional data or federate it with additional data sources. You may need to modify its data schema, allow other applications to access it, even mash it up to create new applications… No doubt, you need a full control over your data.
  3. You want guaranteed performance.
    Public servers don’t provide any guarantees of their availability or performance. Outages hit every public network, no matter how big, strong and smart it is. Can you risk losing availability of your knowledge resources when serving a client? Can you depend on the performance of public networks during the peak time? – For business you need control over workloads, you need to carefully load balance the available resources, you need to guarantee the availability and the performance when they are required.
  4. You need more than tags and folksonomies.
    The issues with the Internet-based social bookmarking are not only technical, but also essential. Tagging is not sufficient for the corporate knowledge that requires more organization, definition and structuring. Even Delicious introduced the so-called tag bundles that intend to bring more structure into the chaos of folksonomies. But business needs more. Tags cannot be mere keywords. – They need to reflect the corporate vocabulary, encapsulate corporate knowledge, even promote corporate culture. In order to be useful for an enterprise tags must be knowledge enhanced.
  5. You need knowledge management.
    Bookmark sharing is not sufficient in a corporate context. Corporate users need to know why their colleagues bookmarked a resource, how did they actually use it, did they find it useful and for which purpose, do they know other similar resources, could they contribute ideas, solutions, opinions on related issues… Even who bookmarked a resource may have significance. Corporate users seek expertise, want to ask questions concerning a specific resource, want to learn from others’ experience… In short: in the corporate context bookmark sharing is just a tip of an iceberg. – A whole world of knowledge management is hidden below the water surface.

Here is a related video on YouTube: Social Bookmarking vs. Enterprise Bookmarking

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One Response to 5 Reasons Why Internet-based Social Bookmarking is not Suitable for Enterprise

  1. After re-reading the post I wonder if simple bookmark sharing is sufficient in any context whatsoever. – Just Google recipes for a dish, and then try to decide which of them is best for your dinner, but WITHOUT reading user comments! Merely pointing at a knowledge resource is not enough. The pointer must include reasons for selecting that resource, experience in using it, ideas how to improve it… This is true even for recipes!

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