Information & Knowledge Policy – Social Media

I made it to the second day of this conference on Information and Knowledge Policy Development this week. I was offering a session on Social media policies (Slideshare seems to be working now):


  • Slides 1-4: This was the fun part. Participants discussed their responses to the situations on each slide in small groups and then shared their opinions as a whole. The debate was lively and I was impressed by the range of reactions to the first two situations- some were cautious, some gung-ho. The response to the final one was pretty unanimous – “NO!”
  • Slides 5-10 provided a break-neck overview of the social media space.
  • Slides 11-23 were simply examples (good, bad and in between) of different uses of social software, mostly by governments and mostly in the public space.
  • Slides 24-29 were the different approaches to public servant policies to be found in the US, UK, NZ and Australia.
  • Slides 30-39 listed 9 issues that you need to think about in establishing your policies:
  1. Transparency – both in terms of the behaviour you want your staff to exhibit but just as importantly, you must be transparent in how your develop your policies with your staff – e.g. IBM developing a public blogging policy with its bloggers using a wiki.
  2. Honesty – nuff said (I hope).
  3. Pollination – with any luck your ideas, words, pictures and sounds will be carried far and wide and outside your span of control. Be prepared for this to happen – and encourage it where you can.
  4. Links (on several levels) – the web is a link-rich environment. You should be creating and encouraging links between people & people, people & things, and things & things. These links not be perfect but messy.
  5. Security – understand security risks but do not let fears about security become an excuse for inaction.
  6. Privacy / Identity – encourage your staff to actively manage their online identities and to respect the privacy of themselves and others.
  7. Archiving – think about the lifecycle of the information your social software activities will create.
  8. Choice – don’t overwhelm people with too many tools all in one go. The right answer to the request to use a new tool is not always “yes” (of course, neither is it always “no”).
  9. Creative Commons – it could be time to rethink your approach to intellectual property ownership to promote cooperation, collaboration and other good things.

I hope that slide 40 is self-explanatory.

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4 Responses to Information & Knowledge Policy – Social Media

  1. Tim Kannegieter says:

    So what is the “long tail”

  2. innotecture says:

    Tim – if you’re referring to slide 8 then you probably want to check out Chris Anderson (or even put the term into Google). Cheers Matt

  3. Tim Kannegieter says:

    V interesting blog site. I was impressed enough to go order the book.

  4. Pingback: Digital Citizens – Personality & Disclosure « Innotecture

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