When people think about social networking, websites like Facebook and MySpace immediately pops to mind. It’s a way for Gen Y’ers to connect with each other for pure entertainment purposes, right? Or is it?
With Web 2.0 already a staple in the consumer web world, Enterprise 2.0 is quickly gaining momentum within businesses and enterprises. Social networking is going beyond teens connecting in cyberspace. It’s about enabling businesses to collaborate and work together as a community, both internally amongst employees and externally with customers and partners. Instant messaging, wikis and blogs are being used as tools to encourage communication, knowledge sharing and collaboration.
Facebook is venturing into enterprise applications with the help of Ringside Networks, an application server company, which offers an open source “social application server”. “Ringside Social Application Server is the first open-source platform that enables Web site owners to build and deploy social applications that operate with existing Web site content and business applications while seamlessly integrating with social networks such as Facebook.”
“It has a range of cool features like the ability to gather ‘social intelligence’. In other words, the Ringside platform allows business owners to gain insight into the social graph of users, relationships, groups, interactions, and sharing that is occurring on their Web site. Suddenly, socializing becomes smart business.”
In fact, investors see so much potential in the future of social networking that a couple of Facebook investors, Accel Capital and The Founders Fund, created the Facebook Fund for start-ups, which “offers grants to new ventures that specifically develop applications using the Facebook Platform.”
How’s that for enterprise social networking??