Motivation for Weblogging
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Motivation for Weblogging

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Motivation of Weblogger Study, Weblogs

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Motivation for Weblogging Motivation for Weblogging Presentation Transcript

  • Corporate weblogs - The impact of blogging on knowledge work - Dr. Stephan Kaiser Stefanie Kroth Gordon Müller-Seitz Eichstaett-Ingolstadt 2006 Corporate weblogs -1-
  • Content I. Introduction – Weblogs as a new phenomenon p. 3 II. Blogging behavior – How bloggers blog p. 9 III. Motivation – Why blogging motivates p. 15 IV. Knowledge – The impact of blogging on the knowledge worker p. 27 V. Microsoft Longhorn – Illuminative insights from a case study p. 45 VI. Further information – Useful resources at a glance p. 49 Corporate weblogs -2-
  • Introduction to corporate weblogs Central features of weblog-technology In addition, the probably most noteworthy feature of weblogs The term “weblog” was coined by Jorn Barger on his Robot concerns the possibility for readers to write accompanying Wisdom site in 1997. The name stems from the contraction of commentaries in the designated sections that often entail the words “web” and “log” and epitomizes a technology that vibrant discussions [Herring et al. 2005]. These conversations belongs to the field of social software. Although there exists no are analogous to the discussions that can be observed in the consensus concerning the definition of weblogs and various form of threads in the field of open-source software. subtypes have already emerged, some common features of the However, the most striking feature concerns the ability to weblog-phenomenon can be recognized]. First of all, weblogs establish diverse virtual references to other weblogs by means refer to a website where individual thoughts are publicly of various functions, namely blogrolls, permalinks and displayed in the form of a log. The site’s content is freely trackbacks. Blogrolls constitute a list of links to those weblogs accessible via the Internet and no fees have to be disbursed. In the author recommends and reads frequently. These links are most of the cases, a single person renders the initial content of usually located on one side of the respective weblog and the site. However, it is also possible that more than one person enable the reader to infer information about the preferences of contributes to the weblog. Moreover, a weblog is characterized the author. In contrast, single static links, called permalinks, by the fact that the publications occur in a reverse refer to particular posts or even particular sections of a post in chronological order and periodically, although the frequency other weblogs or websites and emanate from a particular varies profoundly. section within a post. Permalinks represent in this sense a Moreover, each post (also called entry), is time-stamped and modification that is closely related to the blogroll feature or the archived so that old content remains accessible. The single “bookmark” feature in common office software applications. In entries are predominantly text based and usually possess a a similar vein, in- and outbound trackbacks exemplify a third title in the form of a large header, followed by text-fragments form of virtual referencing, or rather, interacting. Trackbacks that are amalgamated with pictures, and often with links allow webloggers to see who has referred to his or her original likewise. This is also the point, where the blogosphere post by writing a reply. This feature habitually appears below a becomes relevant, alluding to the fact that the entire number of post and shows a summary of what has been voiced on the weblogs in the Internet represents a distinct media ecosystem. target weblog in conjunction with the URL and name of the As a result of the interlinking, there exists a multiply weblog at stake. intertwined network of multitudinous weblogs, i.e. the “blogosphere”. Corporate weblogs -3-
  • Introduction to corporate weblogs Differentiating weblogs from related technologies Focussing upon corporate weblogs Following the introduction of the distinctive characteristics, one Regarding the evolution of this new phenomenon, it is worth ought to separate weblogs from related Internet phenomena mentioning that weblogs initially mainly consisted of entries that resembled personal online diaries. However, weblogs have for further clarification. First, in contrast to ordinary online nowadays moved beyond self-reflective personal or journalistic diaries, weblogs possess the ability to be augmented with disclosures to multifaceted applications within organizational hyperlinks, permalinks or trackbacks, enabling the interlinking settings. The following section is an endeavor to offer a via the blogosphere voluntarily. Though this is a distinctive taxonomy of the various emerging manifestations of the difference in many cases, the line is unfortunately quite blurred corporate weblog-phenomenon. in this respect. As opposed to personal web pages (“home In order to conceive the forms of appearance accurately, we pages”), weblogs are ideally more often updated. Furthermore, deploy several dimensions. As an initial point, we deem it they are usually establishing a relationship between the appropriate to identify the dimension target group, which can individual author and the person or community that reads the be subdivided into an internal as well as an external target content of the webpage due to recurrent posts and, vice versa, group. Internal target group would then focus upon all visits from the readership’s point of view. Other comparable employees, whereas external refers to stakeholders such as phenomena are bulletin board systems, newsgroups and chats. customers. In contrast, the content of the weblog constitutes a further dimension that can be subdivided into the aspects These are quite similar, but usually lack the ability to be specific and general. interlinked. Nevertheless, they differ consistently concerning the authority to add original content. While in the other three forms the content is created jointly (i.e. symmetrically), in the case of weblogs, the content is solely creator defined (i.e. asymmetrical). As a conclusion, we assume that weblogs are not an entirely novel phenomenon. In fact, it is closely related to traditional Internet genres, above all, online diaries and bulleting board systems. However, weblogs can be asserted their own position in the broader genre ecology of the Internet. Corporate weblogs -4-
  • Introduction to corporate weblogs These weblogs also address a designated group of participants Content and facts prevail the content of the posts. Such quasi team- Specific General oriented knowledge weblogs might also be regarded as an analogue to communities of practice. With regard to external target groups, stakeholder such as External Collaborative Branding customers etc. can be addressed in order to strengthen the profile and reputation of the company, whereby the employees always have to expose themselves as part of the workforce of Target group the respective corporation. Hereby, it seems striking that employees are increasingly notifying information about their Internal Knowledge Culture experiences and progress at work publicly or in a corporate environment. This can be achieved via branding-weblogs whose content is rather general. In this case, the individual posts of employee might reveal insider reports about everyday occurrences at work. Collaboration-weblogs would be an alternative in so far, as their content is specific. For instance, in Taxonomy of company-relevant weblogs a corporate context this affords the opportunity of continuous one- or even many-to-many communication between employees Concerning the employees as the internal target group, culture and/or employees and customers or other stakeholders about weblogs might proof useful to strengthen a company’s culture specific tasks, services or products. When it comes to and corporate identity. Thereby, the content is supposed to be application in reality, this is the prevalent form of weblogs in a private and informal (i.e. general). Thus, culture weblogs would corporate context to date. incur the role of an information broker, leveraging the latest rumours or conversations similar to a notice board. In contrast to this, knowledge weblogs are concentrated upon the employees as well, but their content is specific. Corporate weblogs -5-
  • Method, sample and objectives of the survey Method: Online-based questionnaire Design: 5-point Likert-scale Hosted by adenquire.net Evaluation: with SPSS, a software tool for quantitative research Sample: Target group: Bloggers of three big software companies (Sun Microsystems, Mircrosoft, and Oracle) Time period: one month, summer 2005 Response rate: 93 persons; a response rate cannot be calculated due to unknown size of population Objectives: Analysis and interpretation of blogging behavior with reference to knowledge work Detecting the motives behind blogging Examine the impact of blogging on organizational knowledge Corporate weblogs -6-
  • Underlying structure of the survey Blogging behavior Motivation Knowledge (Intrinsic/Extrinsic) Corporate weblogs -7-
  • Content I. Introduction – Weblogs as a new phenomenon p. 3 II. Blogging behavior – How bloggers blog p. 9 III. Motivation – Why blogging motivates p. 15 IV. Knowledge – The impact of blogging on the knowledge worker p. 27 V. Microsoft Longhorn – Illuminative insights from a case study p. 45 VI. Further information – Useful resources at a glance p. 49 Corporate weblogs -8-
  • Underlying structure of the survey Blogging behavior Motivation Knowledge (Intrinsic/Extrinsic) Corporate weblogs -9-
  • When looking at the blogging behavior, the results indicate differences in the respondents’ blogging intensity Intensity The overall blogging intensity ranges from a very high level (7 % of all respondents) to a 40 35 low level one 30 The biggest group of all respondents is either 25 characterized by a high or mid-range blogging in % 20 intensity 15 In turn, only a small group of webloggers (i.e. 10 5 %) shows a low level of blogging intensity 5 0 1 2 3 4 5 Corporate weblogs - 10 -
  • Regarding the blogging period and the respondents‘ demographics the survey reveals interesting results My age is... Most of the participants (i.e. 61 %) are middle aged between 30 and 39, whereas 22 % are 70 between 20 an 29 years old 60 50 Only a very small group of respondents (i.e. 5 40 %) belongs to the group aged 50+ in % 30 20 10 0 0 - 19 20 - 29 30 - 39 40 - 49 50 + Looking at the blogging period since beginning to blog, there are three or even four I have been blogging for... main groups 35 Respectively almost one third (i.e. 30 %) of all 30 25 respondents has either been blogging for 20 in % seven to twelve months or even for one to two 15 years 10 Only a very small group has been blogging for 5 0 less than one month, whereas one fourth has less than one one to six seven to one to two more than month months twelve years two years been blogging for one to six months months Corporate weblogs - 11 -
  • The blogging intensity is mirrored by the frequency of posting as well as the length of the posts I post... The strongest group with almost half of all 50 respondents (i.e. 43 %), posts once or twice a 45 40 week, whereas only 2 % belong to heavy 35 bloggers which post even several times a day 30 in % 25 Respectively one fourth (i.e. 24 %) posts 20 15 several times a week or once or twice a month 10 5 The overall distribution follows a normal curve 0 several times several times once or twice once or twice less than a day a week a week a month once a month When posting respondents mostly write mid- The average length of my posts is… long posts: the average length of the posts of 60 more than half of all respondents (i.e. 56 %) is 50 half a page 40 in % However, 28 % post with an average length of 30 20 one page or even more than one page (6 %) 10 Only a small group (i.e. 2 %) writes only a few 0 words or one to three lines (i.e. 8 %) a few words one to three lines half a page one page more than two years Corporate weblogs - 12 -
  • The blogging intensity is also reflected in the commenting and reading of other weblogs I comment on other weblogs... On the active site, some respondents 35 comment on other weblogs several times a 30 week (i.e. 21 %) or even several times a day 25 (i.e. 7 %) 20 in % 15 The majority (one third of all respondents) 10 comments on other blogs once or twice a 5 week, whereas the same number comments 0 several times several times once or twice once or twice less than once or twice a month (i.e. 21 %) or even less a day a week a week a month once a month than once a month (i.e. 22 %) On the passive site, the result is somewhat I read weblogs... more homogenous: Most of all respondents (i.e. 45 %) read weblogs several times a day, 50 45 whereas 28 % read weblogs several times a 40 35 week and others (20 %) once or twice a week. 30 in % 25 Another group with 6 % of all respondents 20 15 stated that they read weblogs once or twice a 10 5 month, whereas nobody reads weblogs less 0 several times a several times a once or twice once or twice less than once than once a month day week a week a month a month Corporate weblogs - 13 -
  • Content I. Introduction – Weblogs as a new phenomenon p. 3 II. Blogging behavior – How bloggers blog p. 9 III. Motivation – Why blogging motivates p. 15 IV. Knowledge – The impact of blogging on the knowledge worker p. 27 V. Microsoft Longhorn – Illuminative insights from a case study p. 45 VI. Further information – Useful resources at a glance p. 49 Corporate weblogs - 14 -
  • Relationship between the underlying questionnaire items Blogging behavior Motivation Knowledge (Intrinsic/Extrinsic) Corporate weblogs - 15 -
  • In an overall perspective, the blogging behavior of webloggers is evoked by some motivational factors More than half (i.e. 52 %) of all respondents agree that they are motivated; 41 % of them show some motivation as well Motivation In detail, respondents stated that they blog 60 because... 50 “…it helps me get feedback from customers, 40 about my work.” in % 30 “…it's easy, it's fun, and it connects me to 20 others.” 10 “…of many reasons, mostly related to career and reputation building.” 0 1 2 3 4 5 “…it is fun, it is a contribution to the overall community of some expertise I have.” “…I give something, I get something, DO UT DES.” Corporate weblogs - 16 -
  • Content I. Introduction – Weblogs as a new phenomenon p. 3 II. Blogging behavior – How bloggers blog p. 9 III. Motivation – Why blogging motivates p. 15 IV.1 Intrinsic motivation p. 18 IV.2 Extrinsic motivation p. 24 IV. Knowledge – The impact of blogging on the knowledge worker p. 27 V. Microsoft Longhorn – Illuminative insights from a case study p. 45 VI. Further information – Useful resources at a glance p. 49 Corporate weblogs - 17 -
  • In detail, bloggers are mostly driven by intrinsic motivation Intrinsic motivation 60 Most of the respondents (i.e. 56 %) agree that they are instrinsically motivated for blogging; 50 i.e. they blog because they just enjoy blogging 40 or have fun while blogging in % 30 Almost 20 % even strongly agree, as well as 20 the same number of respondents neither 10 agree nor disagree that they were driven by an intrisic form of motivation 0 1 2 3 4 5 Corporate weblogs - 18 -
  • Different survey items produce evidence for the intrinsic motivation of bloggers I enjoy blogging The item about pleasure or enjoyment of 50 blogging shows a quite uniform picture 45 40 Over 80 % agree or even strongly agree about 35 30 the fact that they enjoy blogging in % 25 20 Only a small group of all respondents (i.e. 5 %) 15 10 disagrees with this statement 5 0 strongly agree neither agree disagree strongly agree nor disagree disagree Over one third of all respondents agree that I am satisfied with my blogging activities they were satisfied with their blogging 40 35 activities; 19 % even strongly agree 30 However, a quarter of all respondents neither 25 in % 20 agree nor disagree 15 In fact, almost 20 % of all respondents are 10 5 dissatisfied with their blogging activities 0 strongly agree neither agree disagree strongly agree nor disagree disagree Corporate weblogs - 19 -
  • Two more questionnaire items confirm bloggers‘ instrinsic motivation It is important for me to do well at blogging The largest group of respondents (i.e. 38 %) 45 agree that it was important for them to do well 40 at blogging and even another group of 22 % of 35 30 all respondents strongly agree 25 in % 20 In contrast, 26 % neither agree nor disagree 15 with the discussed topic 10 5 0 strongly agree neither agree disagree strongly agree nor disagree disagree I am blogging because I want to Most of all, respondents agree or even 60 strongly agree that they are blogging because 50 they want to 40 in % 30 Only a very small group does not blog 20 voluntarily 10 0 strongly agree neither agree disagree strongly agree nor disagree disagree Corporate weblogs - 20 -
  • In addition, blogging can bring some value to bloggers and thus could contribute to bloggers` instrinsic motivation I believe blogging is of some value to me Most of the bloggers agree (i.e. 48 %) or even 60 strongly agree (i.e. 37 %) with the statement 50 that blogging is of some value to them 40 Few are undecided (i.e. 10 %) and only a very in % 30 small group disagrees or disagrees strongly 20 with the statement (each with 2 %) 10 0 strongly agree neither agree disagree strongly agree nor disagree disagree Corporate weblogs - 21 -
  • Content I. Introduction – Weblogs as a new phenomenon p. 3 II. Blogging behavior – How bloggers blog p. 9 III. Motivation – Why blogging motivates p. 15 IV.1 Intrinsic motivation p. 18 IV.2 Extrinsic motivation p. 23 IV. Knowledge – The impact of blogging on the knowledge worker p. 27 V. Microsoft Longhorn – Illuminative insights from a case study p. 45 VI. Further information – Useful resources at a glance p. 49 Corporate weblogs - 22 -
  • In comparison to intrinsic motivation, one can observe that webloggers are less extrinsically motivated Extrinsic motivation By looking at the aggregate variable, the biggest group of respondents (i.e. 47 %) is 50 45 undecided if they were extrinsically motivated: 40 they do not agree nor disagree 35 30 But 30 % agree that they were driven by an in % 25 extrinsic form of motivation 20 15 17 % of all respondents even disagree that 10 they were extrinsically motivated, which 5 stands for a more intrinsic kind of motivation 0 1 2 3 4 5 Corporate weblogs - 23 -
  • Weblogger try to enhance their renown by means of weblogging Blogging enhances my reputation The majority of webloggers acknowledge the beneficial impact of weblogging upon their 50 45 own reputation (i.e. 28 % strongly agree and 40 35 45 % agree) 30 in % 25 In contrast, only 13 % disagree to diverse 20 extents (i.e. 11 % disagree, whereas only 2 % 15 10 strongly disagree) 5 0 strongly agree neither agree disagree strongly agree nor disagree disagree I can show my competence by blogging More than two thirds of the webloggers 50 assume that weblogging helps to illustrate 45 40 their competence 35 30 Only a few people are undecided (i.e. 18 % in % 25 neither agree nor disagree) 20 15 Just a tiny fraction of 11 % of all the 10 5 respondents presumed that weblogging is not 0 strongly agree neither agree disagree strongly relevant for revealing their competencies agree nor disagree disagree Corporate weblogs - 24 -
  • As expected, most of the webloggers do not expect to be remunerated for their weblogging-activities The overall majority is not motivated to blog I am motivated to blog as I can earn money by financial profits with it 70 Only 4 % agree to blog in order to gain 60 financial benefits 50 40 in % These results can be deemed to be in 30 accordance with the strong hints that 20 webloggers are intrinsically motivated 10 0 strongly agree neither agree disagree strongly agree nor disagree disagree Corporate weblogs - 25 -
  • Content I. Introduction – Weblogs as a new phenomenon p. 3 II. Blogging behavior – How bloggers blog p. 9 III. Motivation – Why blogging motivates p. 15 IV. Knowledge – The impact of blogging on the knowledge worker p. 27 V. Microsoft Longhorn – Illuminative insights from a case study p. 45 VI. Further information – Useful resources at a glance p. 49 Corporate weblogs - 26 -
  • Relationship between the underlying questionnaire items Blogging behavior Motivation Knowledge (Intrinsic/Extrinsic) Corporate weblogs - 27 -
  • By means of weblogging, novel connections can be established that enhance the previous access to knowledge The overall results indicate that webloggers assume that blogging enlarges their access to knowledge For example, respondents stated, that weblogs help them to… Overall change in topics considering „…understand how others think“ organizational and individual knowledge „...show my knowledge, skills and interests to the 60 community and potential customers“ 50 “…get personal insights into other people's 40 activities. That means that blogs allow me to learn in % how to configure my computer through to 30 learning what it's like to be a policeman in 20 Manchester. Interesting, useful and fun information is easily available” 10 “I'm an extreme extrovert - I learn and gain 0 knowledge by talking things through” 1 2 3 4 5 “…discern what i currently know about my field of expertise in an organized way, as well as gain more insight on particulars such as tips, tricks and mechanisms of my field of expertise when reading up on other reliable knowledge weblogs” Corporate weblogs - 28 -
  • Content I. Introduction – Weblogs as a new phenomenon p. 3 II. Blogging behavior – How bloggers blog p. 9 III. Motivation – Why blogging motivates p. 15 IV. Knowledge – The impact of blogging on the knowledge worker p. 27 VI.1 Knowledge quality p. 30 VI.2 Knowledge access p. 35 V. Microsoft Longhorn – Illuminative insights from a case study p. 45 VI. Further information – Useful resources at a glance p. 49 Corporate weblogs - 29 -
  • The knowledge gained by blogging is deemed valuable – not only for the individual weblogger, but also for the organization Nearly two thirds of all respondents agreed Quality of knowledge that weblogging is useful since the knowledge derived from it is of high quality 60 50 However, 27 % are undecided 40 in % 13 % even disagree, i.e. they assume that the 30 quality of knowledge conveyed by weblogs is 20 10 not valuable 0 1 2 3 4 5 Nearly two thirds of all participants (i.e. 60 %) By blogging the quality of organizational agree that the organizational knowledge 50 knowledge gets better improves by means of weblogging 45 40 A relative high proportion of respondents is 35 30 neither against this claim nor in favor of it in % 25 20 Only roughly a tenth of the webloggers think 15 10 that weblogging does not culminate in 5 enhanced organizational knowledge quality 0 strongly agree neither agree disagree strongly agree nor disagree disagree Corporate weblogs - 30 -
  • Blogging in a knowledge community evokes an identification with fellow webloggers By blogging I feel that I belong to a Two thirds (i.e. 69 % ) of the webloggers feel 40 knowledge community attached to their weblogging community 35 30 Only 11 % are reluctant to that idea, whereas a 25 relatively high amount of participants (i.e. 19 in % 20 %) indicated that they neither agree nor 15 10 disagree 5 0 strongly agree neither agree disagree strongly agree nor disagree disagree Corporate weblogs - 31 -
  • Webloggers assume that blogging results in enhanced knowledge quality – either by introspection or by deriving benefits from fellow webloggers My weblog helps me to reflect about my 76% of all webloggers favor the idea that they own knowledge 45 blogging urges them to reflect upon their 40 knowledge 35 30 Only few people disagree (i.e. 11 %), whereas 25 in % 20 14 % of the webloggers were indecisive 15 10 5 0 strongly agree neither agree disagree strongly agree nor disagree disagree Two thirds of the webloggers are enticed to Discussions within the weblog-community are vibrant observe or participate in the weblog- 40 community due to vibrant discussions 35 30 However, nearly a third remains neutral and 25 in % 20 does not deem the discussion to be vibrant 15 Only 8 % argue that the weblog-community 10 5 they observe or participate in is not vibrant 0 strongly agree neither agree disagree strongly agree nor disagree disagree Corporate weblogs - 32 -
  • Further knowledge-related benefits from blogging concern the attribution of knowledge to responsible persons, as well as the presupposed confidentiality of the sources Weblogs help me to understand who knows Nearly half of the respondents presume that what in the organization 40 knowledge conveyed with the help of weblogs 35 makes it easier, to find the person that is 30 25 responsible for that knowledge in % 20 Nevertheless, nearly a third (i.e. 29 %) opposes 15 10 this idea 5 25 % of the webloggers aired that they are 0 strongly agree neither agree disagree strongly undecided agree nor disagree disagree In contrast to expectations, less than half of The information displayed in weblogs is the respondents argued that they trust the 40 trustworthy various weblog sources/authors 35 30 A high amount of the webloggers is indecisive 25 while neither agreeing nor disagreeing in % 20 15 16 % indicated that the information displayed 10 in weblogs is untrustworthy 5 0 strongly agree neither agree disagree strongly agree nor disagree disagree Corporate weblogs - 33 -
  • Content I. Introduction – Weblogs as a new phenomenon p. 3 II. Blogging behavior – How bloggers blog p. 9 III. Motivation – Why blogging motivates p. 15 IV. Knowledge – The impact of blogging on the knowledge worker p. 27 VI.1 Knowledge quality p. 30 VI.2 Knowledge access p. 35 V. Microsoft Longhorn – Illuminative insights from a case study p. 45 VI. Further information – Useful resources at a glance p. 49 Corporate weblogs - 34 -
  • Webloggers presume to derive benefits from weblogging while gaining access to knowledge Knowledge access Over two thirds of the webloggers consent to the idea that blogging is beneficial in terms of 70 enhancing knowledge access 60 50 27 % of the respondents were indecisive 40 Just 3 % disagreed with that notion, which in % 30 leads to the conclusion that access is likely to 20 be improved by weblogging 10 0 1 2 3 4 5 Corporate weblogs - 35 -
  • In particular, access to external knowledge is improved by blogging External access The majority of webloggers (i.e. 81 %) approve the idea that they gain superior access to 60 external sources 50 Only 4 % disagree and assume that external 40 access has not improved in % 30 20 10 0 1 2 3 4 5 Corporate weblogs - 36 -
  • Most respondents agree that blogging has changed their access to new knowledge With weblogs I gained access to new knowledge 50 45 40 90 % of respondents agree that weblogs offer 35 30 access to new knowledge in % 25 20 Only 1 % does not agree with that statement 15 10 The access to new knowledge is triggered by 5 0 the possibility to make new contacts outside strongly agree agree neither agree nor disagree disagree strongly disagree the organization 84 % of respondents stated, the they made such contacts outside the organization In conclusion, weblogs can be interpreted as a By means of weblogs I made new contacts outside the organization technology that facilitates the exploration of 45 new knowledge for the organization 40 35 30 25 in % 20 15 10 5 0 strongly agree neither agree disagree strongly agree nor disagree disagree Corporate weblogs - 37 -
  • However, the measure for access of internal knowledge is positive as well Internal access 48 % of respondents agree that weblogging provides access to internal organizational 50 45 knowledge 40 Only 16 % do not agree with that statement 35 30 However, there are 36 % of respondents who in % 25 are undetermined about this issue 20 15 10 5 0 1 2 3 4 5 Corporate weblogs - 38 -
  • In conclusion, weblogs have changed access to organizational knowledge By blogging my access to knowledge has 60 changed 50 40 in % 30 20 73 % of bloggers agree that the access to 10 knowledge has changed through weblogging; 0 only 10 % do not agree with that statement strongly agree agree neither agree disagree strongly nor disagree disagree Weblogs help to access more people than before. Thus, weblogging is a tool for establishing social networks 83 % of respondents agree that they have With weblogs I can access more people access to more people than before 60 than before 50 40 in % 30 20 10 0 strongly agree neither agree disagree strongly agree nor disagree disagree Corporate weblogs - 39 -
  • It is not just the access to knowledge: another advantage of weblogging is the velocity of access Velocity of access Over 55 % aggree that weblogging means a fast access to internal and external knowledge 50 45 Only 13 % of respondents do not agree with 40 this statement 35 30 In consequence, access to internal and in % 25 external knowledge is fast, or as one of the 20 15 respondents stated: blogging “is a powerful 10 knowledge tool”. 5 0 1 2 3 4 5 Corporate weblogs - 40 -
  • In particular the fast access to external knowledge is a crucial aspect By means of weblogs corporate knowledge can be accessed quickly 35 30 25 20 in % 15 Half of the respondents agree that weblogs 10 help to quickly access internal knowledge 5 0 More significant is the statement that by strongly agree agree neither agree nor disagree disagree strongly disagree means of weblogs knowledge outside the organization can be accessed quickly 76 % of bloggers agreed with this statement. By means of weblogs knowledge outside Only 12 % do not see a fast access of external the organization can be accessed quickly knowledge 60 50 40 in % 30 20 10 0 strongly agree neither agree disagree strongly agree nor disagree disagree Corporate weblogs - 41 -
  • Beyond the aspects of access to knowledge, blogging might change personal impact on organizational knowlegde and the intensity of knowledge flows By blogging my personal impact on organi- zational knowledge creation increased 40 35 30 25 in % Over all, 55 % of webloggers feel that their 20 15 personal impact on organizational knowldge 10 creation has increased 5 0 Only 16 % do not agree to that statement strongly agree agree neither agree nor disagree disagree strongly disagree On an organizational level, this can result in a more intensive flow of organizational knowledge More than half of the respondents agree on By blogging the intensity of organizational knowledge flows increased the statement that blogging has increased the 40 intensity of knowledge flows 35 30 However, 20 % can not agree to the same 25 in % issue 20 15 10 5 0 strongly agree neither agree disagree strongly agree nor disagree disagree Corporate weblogs - 42 -
  • Of course, most respondents do use other corporate knowledge bases, but weblogging is special . . . 80 % of webloggers agree that there are relevant other knowledge bases Nevertheless, they think blogging is special, Apart from weblogs, I use other corporate because… knowledge bases 60 “…it is a revolution regarding social 50 interactions that will improve the quality of my 40 Customer Relations and the reach of new in % 30 people” 20 “…it is relatively unstructured. It's easy to re- 10 find information. It's relatively informal” 0 strongly agree neither agree disagree strongly “…it combines reflection, publishing and agree nor disagree disagree networking” “…it is a powerful knowledge tool” “…it has opened up communication across boundaries.” Corporate weblogs - 43 -
  • Content I. Introduction – Weblogs as a new phenomenon p. 3 II. Blogging behavior – How bloggers blog p. 9 III. Motivation – Why blogging motivates p. 15 IV. Knowledge – The impact of blogging on the knowledge worker p. 27 V. Microsoft Longhorn – Illuminative insights from a case study p. 45 VI. Further information – Useful resources at a glance p. 49 Corporate weblogs - 44 -
  • The Microsoft-Longhorn Blogosphere – Illuminative insights from a case study A very prominent example of a corporate weblog is the The final version of Microsoft-Longhorn is expected to be development documentation of Microsoft’s new software launched by the beginning of 2007. With regard to the PDC, “Microsoft-Longhorn”, recently launched as “Vista”. The the MLB was mainly active between September and October Microsoft-Longhorn Blogosphere (MLB) is interesting for two 2003. The intention was to provide potential customers, reasons: Firstly, in contrast to other blogospheres within the voluntary contributors, and developers with a platform to air corporate realm, the weblog-entries of the MLB are publicly their views of the upcoming software. The weblogs are accessible (www.longhornblogs.com). Secondly, the MLB concertedly operated at the respective website focuses on knowledge management-related activities as www.longhornblogs.com. The various members communicate webloggers are noting information about their experiences and via this platform but they are also partially interlinked via their progress at developing and using specific software. The MLB private weblogs. can be depicted along two dimensions, organizational aspects, Participants of the MLB and participants. The MLB consists of Microsoft employees (labeled as Organizational Aspects “experts”), as well as non-Microsoft members, so called Most Regarding the websites that seriously and purposely deal with Valuable Professionals (MVP). According to the Microsoft’s Microsoft-related contents, one can distinguish between homepage, the MVP Program recognizes and thanks websites that are either administered by Microsoft and those outstanding members of technical communities for their that are not. The MLB belongs to those that are not officially community participation and willingness to help others. The administered by Microsoft. However, Microsoft encourages its program celebrates the most active community members from employees to engage themselves in the diverse company- around the world who provide invaluable online and offline related communities that have either an informative or a expertise that enriches the community experience and makes a software-related scope. The information exchanged is difference in technical communities featuring Microsoft restricted to the Longhorn-software. A prior test version was products” [Microsoft 2005]. The MLB consisted of 60 registered assigned to the MLB-members in September 2003 in the run-up members, 43 of them MVPs and 17 Microsoft employees. In to the Professional Developers Conference (PDC) in Los turn, 36 of them were active weblogger (25 MVPs and 11 Angeles. Microsoft experts). For our purpose, we labeled those MLB- members as “active webloggers” who contributed at least once to the MLB via a permalink, post or comment. Corporate weblogs - 45 -
  • The Microsoft-Longhorn Blogosphere – Illuminative insights from a case study To analyze these data in depth, a social network analysis by Looking at the various weblogger, one can assert that Blogger means of the statistical software UCINET helps to illuminate the 1, Blogger 28 as well as Blogger 29 were the most active activities further. We analyzed the websites’ various modes of participants within the MLB. In this connexion it seems worth communication (posts, comments etc. within a period from mentioning that those weblogger that contributed oftentimes September 2003 to March 2005) by collecting in an Excel-sheet were also contacted more frequently (i.e. there existed a high by means of diverse matrices, whereby each of the 36 correlation of 0,67 between posts and comments and the score weblogger was assigned one column, as well as one row. The for posts and trackbacks was 0,79). To put it differently, one relational intensity was reduced to a binary scale (one vs. zero) can assert a high degree of reciprocity here. Thus, it seems as - i.e. the existence or non-existence of a link (sometimes also if webloggers that have a strong attachment to the referred to as tie) between two persons was measured. As a blogosphere will be more likely to help others when they result, the figure below just represents the various linkages experience problems or have questions. In turn, they also among the MLB-members and one cannot make a distinction received considerably more feedback in comparison to less between the types of communication anymore. active MLB-members. Nevertheless, the reciprocity can be depicted as a generalized reciprocity. For instance, Blogger 28 got 115 posts and 548 comments, whereby he will not expect to receive help or information from the MLB-member he helped last week, but from another network member. Corporate weblogs - 46 -
  • Loghornblogs.com – an example for corporate knowledge blogs Blogger 33 Lead User (MVP) Microsoft Employee Corporate weblogs - 47 -
  • Content I. Introduction – Weblogs as a new phenomenon p. 3 II. Blogging behavior – How bloggers blog p. 9 III. Motivation – Why blogging motivates p. 15 IV. Knowledge – The impact of blogging on the knowledge worker p. 27 V. Microsoft Longhorn – Illuminative insights from a case study p. 45 VI. Further information – Useful resources at a glance p. 49 Corporate weblogs - 48 -
  • Famous corporate weblogs http://fastlane.gmblogs.com/ all you (might) want to know about GM http://blogs.msdn.com/ Microsoft‘s weblogging community http://www.longhornblogs.com/ Microsofts particular Longhorn-community http://www.orablogs.com/orablogs/ Oracle‘s blogs http://blogs.sun.com/roller/main.do Sun blogs as well and attracts a thriving community http://blogs.sun.com/roller/main.do Sun Microsystems also utilizes weblogs http://www.knallgrau.at/company/weblog one of the leading German-speaking companies that offer weblog-services http://www.lawblog.de/ a weblog maintained by lawyers that deals exclusively with weblog-related issues http://www.bensaunders.com/ Nike-related business blog (in collaboration with professional athletes) Corporate weblogs - 49 -
  • Weblog search engines http://technorati.com/ (analyses the popularity of the respective weblogs; maybe the most renowned search engine) http://www.blogarama.com/ and http://www.search4blogs.com/bloggers/index.php (convey a similar structure as Yahoo) http://www.blogdigger.com/ (similar to Google) http://www.blogpulse.com/ (cf. blogdigger) http://blogstats.de/ (cf. blogdigger) Corporate weblogs - 50 -
  • Literature overview [Efimova 2004] Efimova, L.: “Discovering the iceberg of knowledge work: A weblog case”, paper submitted to OKLC 2004, retrieved from the internet (22.11.04) at: http://www.ofenhandwerk.com/oklc/pdf_files/I-2_efimova.pdf [Herring et al. 2005a] Herring, S.C., Kouper, I., Paolillo, J.C., Scheidt, L.A., Tyworth, M., Welsch, P., Wright, E., Yu, N. (2005a), “Conversations in the Blogosphere: An Analysis “From the Bottom Up””, paper presented at Proceedings of the Thirty-Eighth Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences (HICSS-38), Los Alamitos 2005 [Herring et al. 2005b] Herring, S. C., Scheidt, L. A., Bonus, S., Wright, E. (in press): “Weblogs as a bridging genre”, in: Information, Technology & People, 18 (2005) [Hourihan 2002] Hourihan, M.: “What we're doing when we blog”, retrieved from the internet (11.09.04) at: http://www.oreillynet.com/pub/a/javascript/2002/06/13/megnut.html [Schuster 2004] Schuster, M.; “Applying Social Network Analysis to a small Weblog Community: Hubs, Power Laws, the Ego Effect and the Evolution of Social Networks”, presentation at the Blogtalk 2.0 conference, Vienna 2004 [Sullivan 2002] Sullivan, A.: “A Blogger Manifesto. Why online weblogs are one future for journalism”, retrieved from the internet (04.10.04) at: http://www.andrewsullivan.com/main_article.php?artnum=20020224 Corporate weblogs - 51 -
  • Notes Dr. Stephan Kaiser studied Gordon Müller-Seitz studied business business administration at the administration at the University of Universities of Regensburg and Eichstätt-Ingolstadt and the European Wales (EMBS Swansea). In 2001, he Business School, London. Since 2004, earned his PhD at the Catholic he works for the Chair of University of Eichstaett-Ingolstadt. Organizational Theory and Human Since that time he is assistant Resources Management at the professor at the same university. Ingolstadt School of Management. His His main research interests are main research interests are positive social software, professional service emotions and social software, in firms, knowledge and human particular weblogs. In addition, he is resources, and organisational interested in professional service theory. firms. Stefanie Kroth studied business administration at the Universities of Eichstätt-Ingolstadt and Antwerp. Since 2006, she works for the Chair of Organizational Theory and Human Resources Management at the Catholic University of Eichstaett- Ingolstadt. Her main research interest is HRM and social software. Catholic University of Eichstätt-Ingolstadt Ingolstadt School of Management Auf der Schanz 49 - 85049 Ingolstadt, Germany www.wfi.edu/lsr - +49 - 0841 - 937 1936 Stephan.Kaiser [at] kuei.de Corporate weblogs - 52 -