This paper discusses the web 2.0 technologies and its impact on businesses. Web 2.0 technologies have been there for several years now; in this paper we are going to analysis some of the web 2.0 applications like wikis, social networks, mashups and blogging etc. Furthermore this report discusses the opportunities and limitations it implicates to business organizations. How business corporations are utilizing the applications, to make them more effective and productive for them. There are many issues surrounding web 2.0 and its awareness among consumers and corporations. This report provides some research involving web 2.0 applications and in impact on different business operations within the company. The paper also mentions in detail some of the limitations or obstacle that web 2.0 technologies induce on the organizations when deploying these applications in their businesses.
Web 2.0 is one of the fastest growing technological aspects of a business. Most of the businesses in recent times are incorporating this technology into their daily operations. It is one of the integral part of their corporate structure.web 2.0 can be defined in several ways, to be precise it can be stated that it encompasses the set of tools that allows user to construct a business and social connections, it allows the users to pool resources on projects over the internet.
Web 2.0 consists of advanced software applications which are delivered on the internet which includes the socials networking, RSS feeds, blogging, online communities and some other virtual worlds. It essentially gives the control in the hand of the user, which enhances the creativity further depending on the application and how it can benefit the organization. The prominent deference between 1.0 and web 2.0 is that the later allows “two way traffic” which means the interactivity is two way, now the web is more productive because it’s invited participation.web 1.0 technologies were more platform-based while Web 2.0 presents the web as a platform for itself.This means that not only the user can view it but it gives the ability to enhance, edit, and modify the data depending on the user’s creativity. A larger organized IT company can use several Web 2.0 tools to improve alliance with both its clients and their business partners. (O’reilly, 2005)
In this research paper we will provide an overview of web 2.0 and its effect on business environment. How web 2.0 is playing a role in a company, and what is the impact of these technologies on the business, further more we are going to discuss these technologies according to their usability and flexibility even the limitation of web2.0 technologies. The report will provide the detailed analysis of this technology, and how we can make it more efficient for business operations. In the end the report will be concluded according to the review findings.
Web 2.0 technologies
The exponential growth of web 2.0 technologies has made possible what was not achievable few years ago. The main reason of this is what these technologies offer and how they are deployed. The engagement and interaction has increased due to the web 2.0 applications, more interactivity results in more creative and engaging results. Now the students can view lectures can interact with their tutors, receive feedback online which is all part of e-learning, according to recent studies the online association between the student and their tutor has resulted in increased levels of student motivations towards academics and progression. Same is the case for vast companies which are based on different geographical locales, its employers can interact online, record progress, and gets information about projects all using web 2.0 technologies. The increased level of participation are possible now in the social web, where users act as both the writer and the reader, this is really helped growth of the computer ownership and web usage over the years. Increased user inputs leads to the augmentation of recycled dynamic content and collective intelligence. The content of web 2.o application like wikis, blogs are not permanent now like web 1.0 had, now the content can be removed, edited, modified and reused by users. Web 2.0 emphasizes more on the superiority of content creation over its consumption. These technologies are structured in a way that that are based on open programming interfaces which permits extensive participation. (Magged, Boulus and Wheeler 2007)
Now we are going to review some of the web 2.0 technologies.
These types of web 2.0 technologies allow users to build personal web spaces which are accessible to other users to share the personal content and communicate with one another. Some of widely known socials networking website are “facebook”, “MySpace” and “twitter”. These websites allows user to create and customize their own personal account, users are interconnected from all over the world through one network. Users can find other users of similar interest, their collogues, friends etc and add them to their account, depending on the service the website offers there may be cases where other web technologies is being utilized with the social network like blogs, video/audio sharing etc. social networks are easily the most popular and used technologies of web 2.0. (AjjanandHartshorne 2008). With the increasing use of social networking websites, comes the obstacles they cause for individuals and organization, these socials networks are used by a different type of users which can result in making them controversial activities like hate campaigns targeting groups ,and exploitation and stalking. In addition to all above there is always a doubt about the true identity of the user. (Magged,Boulus and Wheeler,2007)
A Wiki is defined as a website that allows creating, editing multiple interlinked WebPages. One of the most prominent examples of it is “Wikipedia” which is a free encyclopedia of information and data available for users to share online. According to (Rubenking, 2003) wikis are the worlds simplest websites which are built by several members collaborate. This article states wikis as web based public bulletin boards. The wiki based website “Wikipedia.com” was named “Pc magazine website of the week” whose users and members contributed to over three hundred thousand articles. Wikis can be used in business where the management wants its employers to share knowledge and experience of a project
RSS (Really Simple Syndication or Rich Site Summary) is actually a set of markup language based web content distribution and republications protocols that are used by news websites (Magged, Boulus and Wheeler, 2007). RSS is one of the web 2.0 technologies that expanded its reach with the marketers, clients and publisher few years ago. Users use RSS filers to subscribe to the content they require depending on their likeness while the publishers know which content to post on their site which garnish public interest and thus create traffic to their websites. The content is easy to found in search engines and several websites if it available in an RSS feed. A publisher can many variety of content in a RSS feed for example new, job vacancies, educational articles, launched product news etc. (Marketwire, 2008).
Mashups are actually hybrid version which is created by merging two or more web 2.0 applications to create a new. It is one of the most potentially viable approaches of web 2.0 technologies. Now days almost everything is being mashed up from blogs to social networking to news feed. Earlier mash up was used by users for personal convenience or interest but now its commercial implications are enormously increased, it gives the business/firm to syndicate their content all over the websites, the integrations of other useful information into their own website is going to be feasible as their content gets more significant ( Mcbarron, 2006).
The oldest of technology, blogging have increasing practiced all over the world every day. According to (Magged, Boulus and Wheeler 2007) blogs are straightforward content management tools that allows non novice users to update content on the internet, Blogs are connected between several users who post content online depending on their preference of genre. There are two aspects of blogging that the garnered interest from companies and consumers first that it’s an ease for publishing content on web secondly collection of tools have increased around the blog that make the process of blogging easier. In particular these tools that are used to blog web content play really important role in the way blogs are developed, which mean blogging is not just an economical way of publishing content but blogging has also created road to cumulative web content to specific end, which ends up being the information being recycled. Blogging is not just republication of content but it also invited participation (Tredinnick, 2006).
Limitations/effects of Web 2.0
Like every other technology in the cyber world even web 2.0 has its limitations which we are going to discuss here. As we know that web 2.0 consists of application which are accessible over the web, which means one of the main shortcoming of it is that they cannot be assessed for without an internet connection, this factor can come in play for all the minor companies which do not possess a 24 hour web connection or does not have an LAN (local area network) connection. One more disadvantage of a web 2.0 is that the quality of information is compromised, as the source cannot be trusted because any user could have edited or modified the required information (for example blogging, wikis etc).Most of the companies who have successful deployed web 2.0 into their operations are the security threats and the vulnerability to their corporate data.
The article (Constantinides and Fountain,2008) discussing the negative influence that web 2.0 present. As the some of the specific application of web 2.0 are used bound, so the content generated by user can present danger to the established culture for example wikis and blogs where user can modify and edit the information, any viewer seeking that specific information cannot distinguish between genuine information and an altered one.
Social security is another concern of web 2.0 applications; we know how the internet has an adverse consequence over its users causing depression anxiety and addiction to name a few. This has increased over the years due to emergence of web 2.0 applications like chat rooms and social networks. Their users are hooked to it indecisive of time. People with social autism are more comfortable now as they are able to communicate with others online rather than experience a live interaction with individual or audience. Excessive social networking website likes “face book” and “MySpace” have become a concern, as they users end up putting their information and even location on it which creates a social and security concerns for many of them later while some website like “twitter” where many companies have faced embarrassments due to its employers posting their outbursts online for the whole world to view which results in employer being fired or paying huge amount of fine, this not only disrupts the infrastructure on their management but also gives a negative impression of their company.
Impact of Web 2.0 on Business
Web 2.0 had a great impact on the business; here we are going to business the intensity of this impact on businesses. This report discussed technologies like wikis, blogs, podcasts, social networks, and RSS filters etc. Now we are to discuss how the mentioned technologies affect the daily business processes and how it can be used to increase productivity. These technologies can play pivotal role in a company but that depends on how the technology is availed. If these technologies are properly deployed and maintained, they allow the company to be cost effectively improve their productivity and creativity. And if used accordingly it might eventually help the company being the competitive advantage over other rival companies.
Web 2.0 has been associated with some of the most successful and innovative corporation on the web like “Amazon” and “Google” to name the few. These hugely known companies work with the fact that information thrive on the internet, so one of the way that can lead them to innovative strategy is to draw on the expertise of their own user community. The technological approaches on web 2.0 can create developing forms of business model, such as social networking or even price comparison software. The firm can exploit these user contributed content to add the value to their commercial services like social networking website do.
According to research by (Andriole, 2010), wikis blogs and RSS filers had the greatest impact on the business while the virtual worlds dint seem to have much impact on business. This research consisted of interviews, surveys and observations from selected companies and industries which were based in the United States of America. The results of this research showed concern and uncertainty and significant contribution to communication and collaboration. Security is a big concern for companies using this technology but the research showed that communication and collaboration were generally well served by web 2.0.To summarize the results of the above research we learned that the web 2.0 did had a great impact on the businesses and now are entering the enterprise slowly and deliberately but the exception of those applications which cannot be controlled entirely but the enterprise’s IT associates. Most of the applications which are being introduced in the organization structure of a company are the ones which ate cost effective, integrated and manageable according to the company’s existing infrastructure. However there are some serious concerns about security and privacy control. All of the surveyed technological organizations were both proceeding as well as hindrance to the deployment of the web 2.0 technologies. Some are progressing with the enterprise because it’s being governed by the same processes which are used for deployment, attainment and support/maintenance of all their digital technologies while other organizations are losing its grip because they believe it is difficult for them to prevent the business units and their enterprise teams to work or creating wikis and blogs. All the companies which were interviewed for research said they deployed blogs, RSS filters, Wikis and podcasts, only a few of them deployed the socials networks, virtual worlds and mashups. This research showed that the companies were willing to adopt web 2.0 technologies inside rather than outside of their firewalls, as they more concerned with security and access to their private data rather than failure or risk of exposing their data to competitors.
Some of the interactive web 2.0 applications such as blogs, wikis and virtual worlds have completely changes the way now users gather the information. Now the user wants to contribute and edit the data as well. If we talk about the financial aspect of a business and web 2.0 impacts on it, according to the article by (Heng, Stefan, Meyer, Thomas and Antje, 2007) the financial services providers are realizing that they need to install the web 2.0 applications successfully into their respective firms because eventually these technologies are going to maximize their reach in their external and internal matters. . Some of these organizations have deployed web 2.0 in form of internal wikis, internal blogs. Information feeds RSS etc. The reason why these applications are having impact on financial industries is because web 2.0 applications offers combination of competitive prices and affable community networks which can attracts many consumers. Currently the financial service source is exposed scrutiny over the web which enhances margins, transparency and reputational risks. Web 2.0 technologies like online p2p (person to person) and pay systems inspire the competitive conventional banking. Some of the financial organizations like even banks face new opportunities and threats regularly regarding the competition from rivals or even their internal infrastructure like security and maintaining a relationship with client to name a few. Further more research has showed that web 2.0 have faced some obstacles in the financial sector of a business, some of the requirements of the customers and their respective rigid authority do not always agree with the communications customs of the web 2.0. Wikis and blogs offers innovative way of two-way communication between the internal processed of a financial institute, the employees of these financial institutes can easy access the database which will eventually boost the institute’s information flow with interruption delays.
If we look at the marketing aspect of a business we can learn how greatly it impacted in this sector of any business. Blogging, online communities and wikis are the most common applications of web 2.0 that the companies are using all over the world to maximize their reach to their customers. One of the least utilized application virtual world played huge role in marketing of a business, several companies foresee its advantages and have already got onboard on the virtual online world, where millions of users are able to interact with each other, share ideas, and discuss information. Companies use this virtual online world to sell, promote, advertize their products. All the companies are building a strategy using web 2.0 applications to be more competitive and prominent in the corporate world some of them are using instant chats with their website to improve customer service and allow interaction within their customers and expands its reach among them. Blogging has already created impact on consumers.( Parise,Guinan and Weinberg 2008).
This report has covered some information about web 2.0 technologies its impact on businesses. We know now that web 2.0 technologies have created several opportunities for business organization, now it depends on the organization how they deploy them to utilize it to maximum for their corporation. Since the emergence of web 2.0, we have seen exhilarating technologies on, multimedia platform which invites more creativity and interactivity. These technologies have help building a better connection and communication between the consumers, organization stock holders etc
We strongly believe that there are some issues we have to think about when discussing about web 2.0 and its impact or business, web 2.0 technologies are now just set of useful applications but actually it’s a powerful medium of internal and external interaction within an corporation. The corporation can now successfully benefit from web 2.0 technologies as their information sharing, problem solving, maintenance, marketing products is made easier and effective. Web 2.0 has provided opportunities as well as challenges for organization. The limitations of web 2.0 like security or corporate data for a business does play a factor, because the corporations are to critical to their data being exposed to authorized access and information breach from within the corporation. There needs to be more awareness of web 2.0 technologies and its implications among the consumers and corporation.
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