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The New Internet

The New Internet
  Technology with Integrity 

By Tim Torian, Torian Group, Inc.

 

The Internet is changing, and eventually it will affect you and your business. You may have heard the expression “Web 2.0”, referring to a new breed of web services and sites. These new web sites emphasize the contribution of the user, and embrace a more democratic and participatory model of information management. Prime examples are YouTube and MySpace.  Business related sites are finding ways to provide services online by leveraging the knowledge and content brought by the participants.  Flikr.com provides online photos. Wikipedia.com has become the encyclopedia of the internet by publishing and managing the content provided by its users. Reddit.com and digg.com provide news based on the votes and contributions of the readers. Del.icio.us provides collaborative bookmarking, allowing you to benefit from a consensus on what is interesting or relevant to any topic. Google allows you to benefit from the search choices others make.

This is the shift of control from institutions to individuals that the relentlessly democratizing force of the Web has begun exerting on the business models of organizations of every description. 

The Emergence and Rise of Mass Social Media in the Web 2.0 Era

Anyone posting anything on a simple blog lets them automatically reach the 1.1 billion users on the Web today.  And with syndication, social media content is picked up and can be found by anyone looking for information via Technorati, Google Blog Search, TechMeme or dozens of other innovative discovery mechanisms.

Some ground rules for the new web:

Communication in the form of conversation, not monologue. Static content is out. Blogs and Wikis are in. Companies that embrace this model provide a forum or resource for their users (and staff), encouraging individual contribution and interaction.

Participants are people, not organizations. Granting control over the content of websites to the users is the norm. The stuff published on individual people's sites is as good as or better than the stuff in newspapers and magazines. The top links on Reddit are generally links to individual people's sites rather than to magazine articles or news stories.

Honesty and Transparency are core values. Social media is an often painfully candid forum, and traditional organizations -- which aren't part of the conversation other than through their people -- will often have a hard time adjusting to this.

Information is pulled by the person seeking, rather than pushed by the organization.  Pull systems let people bring to them the content and relationships that they want, instead of having it forced upon them by an external entity. 

When participating in the new web, identify and embrace the users and customers who make up your business community. Give them free, flexible tools to interact with each other about you and your products. Let them pull what they want from your site. Start a blog, wiki, or forum.  Run from static web sites.

For more information search Google for “web 2.0”.


Tim Torian has taught computer networking at the College of Sequoias and Cal Poly Extension. He has a BS in Computer Science, and has been consulting on computer networking for the past 30 Years. His industry certifications include: Cisco CCNA and CCNI, Microsoft MCSE. He was recognized as Entrepreneur of the year for 2008 by the Tulare County EDC. He is president of Torian Group, Inc. which provides a full range of Technology Consulting services to local business, including computer services, networking, web and custom software development. www.toriangroup.com

     
 

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