James Garner is leading a reasonably robust panel on the pros and cons of social networking.

Panel is:

Euan Semple

People confuse the internal and external use of social networking. But the line is blurring. I’m hearing more and more stories of people going home to work, because they can be more effective there. Doesn’t want to respond to corporate Twitter accounts, because he doesn’t know who the person is.

Trish Hunt

Yes, blurred. If you’re speaking on behalf of the company, you should have responsibility. (She keeps calling Twitter “Tweeter”)

Dirk Singer

First job with internet, they had to collect e-mail, for control. That’s gone and will go with social networks.

ES: 10 to 20 years for command and control to go. Social networking is fun but does it add to the ROI of the company? Same can be said of meetings…

TH: People finding that they can share information and avoid meetings is a big benefir, especially if the can come into the office less.

ES: HR is embodiment of C&C backed up by IT – they have the most to lose, but the biggest opportunity.

TH: Disagree. From a  Dell perspective, we’re committed to it, but there is monitoring and management.

DS: Survey after survey after survey shows that most companies are taking a different approach, and are becoming more restrictive. Laurel Papworth is a good source for this.

One of the audience asked about the death of e-mail. Euan said he didnt think it was dead, but people need to learn to manage it better. Trish agreed. The questioner asked then if e-mail was more considered than Twitter, which Dirk countered by saying that 140 characters forces consideration.

Biggest Blockers?

ES: Culture
TH: Sales force who think it gets in the way of the sale
DS: Bosses, who don’t think it’s work.