This website covers knowledge management, personal effectiveness, theory of constraints, amongst other topics. Opinions expressed here are strictly those of the owner, Jack Vinson, and those of the commenters.

Why don't we wiki well?

Steve Dembo asks Why don't we wiki well?  Why do we continue to re-create the wheel that others have already created?  What does this look like inside organizations?

Raise your hand if you have a wiki with a list of Web 2.0 sites. Ok, put your hands down. Now raise your hand if you have a wiki with a list of internet safety links. Ok, put your hands back down. Now raise your hand if you have a wiki with a list of good blogs to read.

Steve suggests some obvious reasons for this behavior: ownership, immediacy.  It's the same reasons people put up websites and blogs and other resources that are essentially the same.  I remember discovering tens of "expertise databases" when we were thinking about creating one.  And there were repeats of various chemical-property databases and many other frequently-needed "databases" within the company.

[And then there is the whole problem of why people don't participate, even when you have setup a wiki.  I think it's related.]

Where does this problem lay?  Are the tools too easy, as Steve suggests?  Is a version of the not-invented-here syndrome?  (I suspect there is a big chunk of N-I-H in the reasoning.) 

Does it matter?  Isn't another aspect of Web2.0 tools that we can mix and match, and that the most interesting pieces will bubble to the top.  So what if there are 10 expertise wikis?  Won't the most-useful wiki rise to the top of the crop (via linking, tags, delicious, diggs, etc)?  Shouldn't we let people create their own to see if they will provide anything new to the mix?

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