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The socialization of KM: Inmagic Year in Review 2009

One thing 2009 will be remembered most for is the socialization of KM, the next topic we wanted to revisit as part of our Year in Review.

Social media has significantly changed KM due to the culture of sharing that has pervaded our lives, professionally and personally. People of increasingly diverse ages are trained, willing, and able to use social media. That makes it easier to get employees on board with social media in the enterprise, and understand how and why to use it.

However, a big question raised this year is, Has social media finally enabled KM? Andy Moore, Publisher of KMWorld, wrote in an article, "For decades, it’s [KM] been a promise. But knowledge management is finally possible. That’s because social networking MAKES it possible. By allowing fast, easy and lightweight collaboration between individuals and workgroups, tools such as user forums, blogs, wikis and their ilk have finally made good on the promise of KM."

That quote received a lot of attention from people in the industry, including Carl Frappaolo, who asked, Just what have we been doing until now? Carl's counter argument is that KM is not just about technology. It is "a business practice and ecosystem, that evolves over time."

From this debate, we conclude KM is about more than one technology and it's also about more than just technology. It's about capturing and using enterprise knowledge to achieve the business objectives at hand. It requires, among other factors, the right technology, the right strategy, cultural embracement, and senior management support.

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