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33 MANAGING THE MESS

33

MANAGING THE MESS

People fear the apparent messiness of online environments but sometimes making things more organized makes them harder to find. One person’s sensible taxonomy is another person’s gobbledegook. How do you get the best of the formal and informal ways we have of organizing information?

We expend a lot of effort in business tidying up. Organizations are about being organized. Being messy is seen as being inefficient. Management is about maintaining order, often at any cost. But what would happen if we let things go wild? What would happen if we let people build their own spaces in their own way? If we didn’t insist on a uniform, corporate style for our intranet would people find it a more attractive place to spend time and would we find it easier to navigate? There is no consistent style or navigation for the Internet, and yes, this can be frustrating at times, but billions of people spend lots of time in there – unlike your average intranet.


  

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