In my daily RSS reading, I came across an article from CIO.com entitled “CIOs Still Fear Web 2.0 for the Enterprise”. I bring this to attention as my recent writing has been focused on more advanced services like lifestreaming and the semantic web. The corporate demographics of the survey are nicely distributed:

The majority (43 percent) were from companies with 5,000 or more employees. The rest broke down as follows: 18 percent had 1,000-4,999 employees; 23 percent had 100-999; and 13 percent came from companies with fewer than 100 people.

Given this distribution, I figured this would be a good sample survey of Corporate America. I think that when people play with sites that are on the leading edge, they tend to forget what the rest of the world is doing. This is especially true when the technology is even more bleeding edge like the semantic web. The line does seem to get a little fuzzy with technologies about to reach their tipping point. A case in point is social media and the current king Digg. Those of us using sites like Digg tend to think that everyone uses Digg. Yahoo has proved that wrong already with their launch of Buzz, and how much more traffic it generates. So, what does a corporation do with sites considered web 2.0?

Only 30 percent of IT decision makers said they offered wikis as a corporate application. A mere 23 percent offered blogs, while18 percent utilized RSS. Only 10 percent of respondents brought social networks into the enterprise.

Those are slightly unpleasant numbers, as the collaboration and discussion that evolves with these technologies is a tremendous benefit. So what about external access to these types of sites?

35 percent said they shut them down as soon as they detect them, while 36 percent monitored them for risk and 29 percent studied the business case for mainstreaming the particular technology.

And these numbers are highly unpleasant. When many of your employees want to use a technology, and you shut them down as soon as they are detected, you tend to diminish the morale of your employees. More surprising is the general consensus that these types of sites are a risk and generally bad for business.

As I chat with my fellow users of social media, I think I am going to point out that not everyone is using the leading edge sites. Maybe focusing on how businesses can take advantage of these sites can give us new functionality that we would not have thought of. Or, if enough consumers desire more access to a certain site or technology, maybe businesses will be forced to allow it. In any case, it is good for everyone to see “how the other half” lives. In your next discussion, maybe you will look at a different angle than you would normally have. Or maybe you just think that corporations are going the way of dinosaurs.