A bit more on Gartner’s blogs

Zymurgy’s Law of Exploding System Dynamics says: “When you open a can of worms, the only way to re-can them is to use a larger can”. Looks like I did that with this one. Particular apologies to Euan, because I should have remembered his presentation better than this! But I don’t regret starting the discussion about how external facing guidelines can be effectively created. Make sure you read the comments as well as this post.

I just came across the starting note on Anthony Bradley’s Gartner blog which is interesting because it outlines the process Gartner went through before they let their analysts loose. Task forces, business plans and guidelines all carefully researched and internally validated by management.

I’m not going to add any commentary except to say that if you’ve heard Euan Semple talk about the way that blogging was introduced to the BBC and became a significant force both inside the BBC and outward facing, you’ll have seen a very different, lighter weight and more community-oriented option. Not least: the BBC’s guidelines were developed, via a wiki, by the people actively doing that stuff. Only then were HR and legal invited to dot the i’s and cross the t’s. My last encounter with Euan was at a BCS evening in June – follow the link.

• Gartner Blogger Network Lessons Learned, Anthony Bradley, Gartner, 18 Sept 2008
• An evening with Social Computing – and a stunning view!, ITasITis, 17 Jun 2008

4 responses to “A bit more on Gartner’s blogs

  1. The BBC wasn’t dealing with getting something vetted by a bunch of analysts who can incessantly critique anything (myself included) :-). The guidelines were developed by analysts prior to any involvement by legal, marketing, etc. We opted to get a baseline guidelines document in place and start blogging first. Now the guidelines are open to the community (including you) for feedback and evolution. We fully recognized that they will evolve and we are already getting significant feedback from the community. I don’t think the approaches were so different. We felt it would be more productive to get something out there for the community to evolve rather than asking the community to build it from scratch. This is a social application best practice. Starting with nothing but a hope often leads to nothing hopeful.

  2. Anthony – thanks for joining the debate, and for the clarification. I guess that Euan would feel that journalists and media people are at least as likely to incessantly critique 🙂

    Good luck with the Gartner blogs: it’s a great way to broaden the accessibility of your expertise. You might like to look at my enhanced index on informationspan.com!

    PS – I checked your blog because of a post on someone else’s claiming not to trust anyone in social media who doesn’t tweet … well neither do I!

  3. And just to completely pull your post apart I wasn’t responsible for external facing blogs which did, I believe, entail much wailing and gnashing of teeth!

    The guidelines were for BBC staff who had personal blogs and we did do that as you described. We also did most of the internal stuff incrementally and without too much management effort working on the basis that is was better to ask for forgiveness than permission.

    I agree with Anthony that whatever it takes it is better to do something than nothing!

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