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Web and Intranet Q & A from J.Boye Philly12 Conference...

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J.Boye Web & Intranet Conference: 6 Questions and Answers for What Happens Next

J.Boye conferences are a small and powerful alternative to meetings where thousands of people wander exhibit halls and conference center corridors. I've been to 5 over the past three years in Aarhus, Denmark and in Philadelphia. Never fail to learn something new from the interesting people who attend. Last week's meeting in Philly was no different.

A fun and informative feature happens each year when two volunteers give their "yes" and "no" answers to several Web and Intranet questions at the closing conference session. After the expert opinion, everyone gets to vote. Here, from the 2012 closing session last week, are this year's questions and audience opinion.

QR codes are dead or alive?
  • People were evenly divided on this one, with a one vote edge for "alive." The usual culprits were cited for why QR codes were dead... including excessive choices for reader apps, silly applications of the code symbols, and the simple fact that many people still don't know what they are or don't see a benefit in using them. But given those challenges, a bare majority wasn't ready to say they were "dead."

Has Facebook "jumped the shark" with the Timeline feature?
  • Nearly 60% felt that Timeline was more of a help than a hindrance for Facebook. This seems a feature that people either love or hate. Or is that a love or hate for Facebook transferred to the Timeline? I couldn't quite tell from the discussion.

Augmented Reality: does the web need this to survive?
  • Only 20% of the audience agreed with this one. Some opinion that this was sometimes a nice feature but that too much of a good thing could easily become a problem.

Will online sharing get you fired?
  • The theme of this year's conference was "Sharing is Caring." This discussion focused on how much people can share within an organization without getting into trouble over what they share with others. While 30% agreed you could lose your job over this one, most people were more comfortable with the growing openness spreading throughout the web environment, both inside and outside organizations.

Usability: "Now that website redesign is over,  can we stop worrying about usability?"
  • This question came from the title of a presentation at the conference. Actually, the session title was a bit misleading. The exact proposition was that major website redesign projects costing hundreds of thousands of dollars were going to disappear, replaced by something akin to continuous tinkering with existing sites. That said, nobody agreed that it was OK to stop worrying about usability. Wise folk at a J.Boye conference voted 100% for the continued importance of usabilty.

Vice Presidents of Marketing: Will new CMS technology make them the "webmasters" of the future?
  • Was the answer to this one just possibly influenced by the lack of marketing people attending? In any case, only about 10% agreed that CMS systems were going to give marketers far more control over the web in the future than they have had in the past.

Next J.Boye Conference in November

If you can't wait for the 2013 conference in Philadelphia next May, starting watching the conference program develop for November 6-8 in Aarhus, Denmark.

That's all for now. 

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"Writing Right for the Web" Conference in May

My second 2-day "Writing Right for the Web" conference happens May 24-25 in Atlanta. We'll explore in depth not only "writing right" on traditional websites, but for social media and mobile sites as well. 

Check the conference details to see what you're missing next week. Or register late and join us!


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