Content Security and Knowledge Management “D’oh”




OK, I admit it. I do not spend all my weekends sitting around thinking deep ECM and KM thoughts. I enjoy hanging out with the kids and indulging in some mindless TV watching.  Its amazing though how the KM/ECM geek in me will sometimes connect the two – mindless TV and ECM/KM that is.

Last night I was wrapping up the weekend watching The Simpsons with my 2 daughters. Sure, occasionally there is a poignant message or two – usually lost on the kids. But in last nights episode there was a strong and important message directed right to every KM, ECM and E2.0 manager. Intentional or not – it was there and you did not have to think to deeply to catch it.

The Simpsons find themselves in Machu Pichu (don’t ask why – its not worth it). The narrator is explaining the significance of the site and states something along the lines of “This great civilization built a great wall around its people to protect it from the outside and keep their culture pure. But great walls also lock out knowledge, (Seriously that is the word he used.) and as a result the Incas were not adept at understanding the rest of the world or dealing with change. When the conquistadors appeared they were confused, ran and were destroyed.”

OK – you all got it right? “But great walls also lock out knowledge.” (Yes, the historical accuracy is off here – but the tie to ECM, KM and E2.0 – nonetheless poignant and worth reiterating.) “But great walls also lock out knowledge.” I spared my kids the thought that popped into my mind, “EXACTLY and that is the mission of every KM, ECM and Enterprise 2.0 manager”, to manage the BALANCE between security and collaboration. It is a topic I have spoken, written and blogged about many times. Information Architected published a primer on this very subject. We published a whitepaper of The 2.0 Adoption Council on this very issue.

A group of the Council members who had to deal with strict privacy laws in Europe could have taken the “Machu Pichu” approach and erred on the side of security. But in the interest of collaboration to support agility and innovation, they worked a bit harder and used techniques and technologies to strike a clever balance between security and collaboration.  Sure – some of us may look at such approaches and say “D’oh”, or even “Duh”, but far too many have yet to really embrace this balancing act as the primary focus of long term success in the world of Knowledge Management, ECM and E2.0.

Are you ready to take the right (balanced) approach to content security in your organization?

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