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Consumer tech driving E2.0 adoption -- but there's a caveat

Consumer technology used to be limited to a subculture of "techies" or "geeks." That's all changed today, which you can probably confirm from firsthand experience if you use a computer hours on end, carry an iPhone, and sometimes speak in emoticons. To make it official, though, Forrester came out with a study on the topic. The findings aren't too surprising: Three-quarters of American households have cellphones and PCs. Half of adults are gamers. Sixty-three percent of households have a broadband Internet connection.

Jenna Wortham covered the study in an article on NYTimes.com, and as I was reading it, it brought me back to something we've touched upon before on the blog: Consumer tech adoption is poised to accelerate enterprise 2.0 adoption.

The nutshell reason is that many concepts and technologies in consumer tech -- particularly social media -- carry over to the enterprise. But there is a major caveat that I like to draw attention to.

Enterprise 2.0 adoption will accelerate only when vetted and tacit knowledge can be combined and leveraged (using social knowledge networks). Social networking is necessary, but not sufficient on its own. We also need vetted content as the base. Context-based social technologies are then the tools we use to foster collaboration and knowledge sharing. Should sound familiar to our regulars out there!

Once content and people come together, we can address core business problems, like competitiveness, innovation, knowledge retention, and productivity of individuals and the organization. More on that in our How to Cost Justify Your Social Knowledge Network Needs series.

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