Sunday, 7 September 2008

The Future of Social Networking and Blogging

We're putting together an article for People Management on Web 2.0 and HR as part of our project for the CIPD. Just in case anyone missed them, there were two very interesting posts in links to other blogs on this site last week. One of these focused on the mixed picture on social networking by James Hayton's Threee blog. He referred to an article in Mashable on September 3rd, referring to a report from Synovate, which showed that 58% of 18-65 year olds world-wide had no clue about social networking. To quote from the article:

'The survey of more than 13,000 people in 17 developed nations also asked if users were losing interest in social networks. According to the report, 36% said “yes,” with interest fading fastest in Japan, Slovakia, and Canada, with 45% of US users supposedly losing their appetite for social networking'

However, the article also points out that this survey leaves out teenagers who are the biggest users, and that provides optimism for providers in this space. Moreover, even in countries where internet penetration is high, such as the US and UK, less than 30% of internet users use social networking, which is evidence either of potential markets or lack of interest.

James raises an important question in his post: Does this suggest a lack of future for social networking? A discussion among academics at the recent Academy of Management event thought not, and we agree. However, social networking is only one aspect of Web 2, and for HR, we believe other social media have greater potential impact, including blogs, which is where the next post by James Richards in useful. Aside from his site and his own research, he has pointed to a new book on blogging which has just come out. It's called simply 'Blogging'. Written by Jill Walker Rettberg from the University of Bergen, it looks like an interesting piece of research into this field. She also has a good blog. I'm off to read it and report back.


Lexy Martin (Quilter and Survey Queen said...

Just found your blog this morning. VERY INTERESTING. And since we share a name, I wanted to comment. And, we have another connection. One of the areas we tracked in our recent HR Systems Survey ( covers the adoption of Web 2.0 innovations by 828 organizations. As you might imagine, these innovations are not widely adopted yet, BUT, linked to stronger sales growth!
PS: I am late to blogging myself

Graeme's HR Blog said...

thanks Lexy, will have a look