We have ‘Internal Communications’ as a reasonably well-established term for what happens inside the corporation, be it in vocal, print or electronic media forms. I’ve even found a nice and almost legalistically comprehensive definition from BNET:
communication between employees or departments across all levels or divisions of an organization. Internal communication is a form of corporate communication and can be formal or informal, upward, downward, or horizontal. It can take various forms such as team briefing, interviewing, employee or works councils, meetings, memos, an intranet, newsletters, the grapevine, and reports.
A further Google on just how long the term has been in existence has proved fruitless though, Miriam Webster has no definition and the Free Dictionary reverts to a revealing and accurate comparison, that of Internal Combustion:
a process in which a substance reacts with oxygen to give heat and light [!]
All the more problematic then when we come to social media. Social media is by definition, social. It happens out there, in the public sphere on Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn, Wikipedia, Twitter, Countless Blogs, forums, feeds , etc., etc.,. But as I’ve pointed out before, what we don’t see a lot of, is social media behind the firewall.
What’s more, we don’t even have a proper name for internal social media, social media that lives inside the firewall. Enterprise 2.0 goes someway in the direction but it seems to me at least as being too Operations driven rather than communication and collaboration lead. It also falls into the same trap as Web 2.0 and seems to curtail the simple richness that the term ‘social media’ has. Finally, it sounds, well just a bit too grand!
I suspect for now that Enterprise 2.0 will be the dominant term, but I wonder if a new, possible neologism will arrive…maybe social medianomics or some other horrid transmutation of the English language!
Is Enterprise 2.0 OK? Or, ideas on a postcard please….