Facebook - Company info/announcements/chat
OneDrive/Google/Dropbox - Company documents
VOIP Services - Company communications
All stored in clear-text obviously (or at least not encrypted by company using the service before transfer to said services, same thing really).
I myself think this trend is hilariously ridiculous, but I'm in a shrinking minority I assume.
It's not difficult to argue that we're in a new era of computing when a hacking attempt against your company's IT stack hacked is very likely, if you have any info of interest. So companies have two choices: secure and maintain their infrastructure more than they ever used to (= spending more than they ever used to), or transfer their infrastructure to companies that will do it for them.
I don't blame anyone who does the latter.
most companies can't even configure their printers correctly, how do you expect them to harden their public facing servers?
you live in hackerland, and not reality.
The one big issue is subpoena's / third party doctrine issues, but I imagine for many companies that's a decent tradeoff for the reduced IT overhead / security / reliability issues. Other industries, like law, should obviously avoid such services.
This is snarky, but have you looked? If you were suddenly trying to be acquired by FB, would you want all your secrets available to them? Sure, that particular problem affects a very small percentage of companies, but I'm not evil enough to imagine all the ways FB could and would use your data.
Do you worry that Verizon is listening to or recording all your phone calls? Or FedEx is opening and reading the documents you're overnighting around? Or that document storage companies are opening every box they store, in case there's something useful in there? How do you know Quickbooks isn't mining your bookkeeping data so they can sell leads to tax or collections firms?
And what about IAAS and PAAS companies like AWS, Google Compute, or even hosting companies like Rackspace or Softlayer, who typically have root access to every machine they manage? How many companies--even big companies--own all their servers and the buildings they are in?
Ultimately, our economy is based on specialization and carefully constructed relationships of mutual obligation. Contracts have to mean something or there's not much business going to get done.
That is contrary to the history of how companies take advantage of data provided to them, even when that data is supposed to be confidential.
Well, Google does read your email to show you better ads. But they never made a secret of that.
> The NSA can get what they want anyways.
If they really want to, yes. That doesn't mean one shouldn't try to make it as hard as possible for them. They won't bother if their cost/benefit analysis says you aren't worth it to get out the big guns. (Reliable 0 days aren't cheap and using them too often soon makes them worthless.)
I really wish this trope would die already. Google is not a person. Google does not read your emails. Employees at Google aren't sitting there reading your emails. An algorithm scans your emails for certain keywords, and displays ads based off of what it finds. That is not the same thing as reading your emails, and it's ridiculous that a forum like this would fall for such fear mongering.
Well, except when they do. http://gawker.com/5637234/gcreep-google-engineer-stalked-tee...
> An algorithm scans your emails for certain keywords, and displays ads based off of what it finds
It's more than that. For example, they also scan images to identify child porn. Or Google Buzz, which showed that they scan and track the people you contact most often, and may do undesirable things with that information, like publish it.
It's naive to expect that Google/Facebook/whatever supplier of corporate IT stuff will just serve as a wholly passive platform, especially if the service is not paid.
I was trying to point out that some level of snooping by the cloud providers themselves is going on right now. Note that I tried to defend Google's behavior by saying that it is no secret and people are opting into it willfully.
Yes, they scan your emails. But not _particularly_.
The problem with this approach is that you also give up control. Want an extra feature or bugfix? Petition FB and see if anything happens. Want to interface with some other system? Get used to browser hacks (cf all those things for Gmail).
I also find it laughable that the article discussed whether or not there will be ads - as if that's the most salient point. Of course the companies will be paying for it and it's obvious to me that FB will want to mine that data regardless of whether they happen to show you ads. They'll also be strongly encouraging users to link accounts too so that the profiles they have of you are even more complete. Depending on how this is adopted, some of my friends who've avoided FB may be forced to join anyway via their employers. Should they switch jobs?
Having said all the above, I'm sure this product will be successful. Most groupware in companies sucks (just think of the convoluted way of arranging a meeting), so a UI like FBs is a great step forward - esp since most of your employees likely need no training.
FWIW I'm working on decentralised alternatives. I don't want to live in a world where my future kids' only options are to either give a tiny handful of companies unfettered access to everything or to go and (literally) live in a cave. http://nymote.org/blog/2013/introducing-nymote/
Working in the finance sector, it's interesting to see a strong divide between US companies that are more than happy to have an external company hold all/most of their data in the cloud and European and Asian financial institutions who insist on hosting everything on site using their IT department, their software and hardware etc.
That meant that EU based firms could only buy our Install-behind-your-firewall version.
Is it the same for the financial district, perhaps?
Social Networking at the workplace has potential to really make things flow better, and you're using it on the behalf of a company rather than putting anything personal on there. I'm not afraid of vacation photos leaking to the internet because I'm not going to have them anywhere near this service.
I'm sick of receiving emails like, "Jeff is out today" when instead I could look at the meeting event on my FB@Work account and see that Jeff is no longer attending.
Information in the workplace really does need a bit of decluttering and I see this as a positive thing.
Just as you don't own your work computer and shouldn't have anything personal on it that you're not willing to have your bosses see, don't include any information on here that is anything other than planning around getting real work done and poking others about a ticket.
(If they include ticketing, I could see this being huge. Someone needs to bring request tracker to the modern era.)
How about putting emphasis on "have to" instead? For most people, the advantage of these services is that you get very good services for little cost. It's simply cheaper to use 3rd party services. That why they've become so popular.
It is incredibly difficult to prevent attacks from technical people inside your own company, and when this happens to a company like Google or Facebook it will be a huge disaster.
They're buying-up cloud app vendors as fast as Oracle is...
If the answer is "Pretty bad!" - then they should go ahead and sign-up for Facebook at Work.
Lars Rasmussen was also the guy behind google maps. Seems a little unfair to set it up like the above.
The problem with Wave was nobody knew what it was.
was his biggest.
For a social network to have value, you need users who are compelled to frequently submit content. By adding a power structure, users have to evaluate their decisions, which can generate anxiety or extra work, leading to a drop off in contribution rate.
It's one of the reasons teenagers ditched Facebook once their parents joined.
So we'd have one for the Project X team discussion, and another for Project Y team discussion, one that included the QA team if we needed to discuss bugs with them, and we'd make a temporary one if we just needed to discuss prep for an upcoming meeting, etc. And then we had the group that wanted to share meme pics and youtube links, and the group that wanted to share links to metal music, and another to discuss anime, etc.
You could also put in filters so it only notifies you if certain words appear in the chat, like your name or some feature you're in charge of. It was simple, dynamic, and more effective than any other company I've worked for before or since.
One of the bigger issues with the tool, however, is adoption. Maybe an enterprise facebook would have a higher usage rate because everyone already knows how to use it?
If everyone actually used the official collab tool here at gigantic_company it'd be a lot easier to find out if another department already solved your problem so you could learn from their implementation, rather than relying on the tribal knowledge of someone who's been here for years and years. I'd like that.
Most communication happens in Outlook/Exchange mailing lists.
I do think that Yammer and it's ilk offer somethings that plain email don't - better attachment integration and history (with email you can't see discussions that occurred before you joined).
One thing I don't like about Yammer (and other social networks for work) is that discussions are very "flat". Contrasted to email discussions at my work, which can get very lengthy and include many branches. They wouldn't scale to Yammer at all.
For smaller companies where all employees are in the same place I guess it wouldn't have as much value though.
I can always then connect it to Salesforce and any other third party systems via Zapier.
They're not naming any of their hot new collaboration tools, so they're just ripping off google docs then?
Going to docs.google.com simply brings up, well, docs.
Or weird trivialities like a dozen people asking me if I've fixed my TPS report headers yet, or the office printer is reporting "PC Load Letter" and no one can remember the new IT ticketing system procedure so I'm posting it here instead.
I don't think it would be the communications platform of choice for top secret R+D or contract negotiations.
They can pretend to sell collaboration tools while they sneak analytics with interesting stuff on the users' personal facebook usage (and maybe browsing habits) in along with it.
This won't come immediately, of course.
Why do you think that? User data is the crown jewel and competitive advantage Facebook has over other companies. It would never give up that advantage. This meme refuses to die somehow.
Edit: Worth pointing out that it's not really a Facebook account in the typical sense. You can have an FB@Work account without having an FB account, though it seems you can also use your FB account for both.
Doesn't look like you have to have personal account or link it.
I think managers would think twice before introducing a collaborating software where team would end up spending more time than actual work. I think for this very reason softwares like work wikis, sharepoint are so successful.
Also from user point of view, I do not see myself using the same tool at work and then at home. Hopefully they have a radically different UI rather than just changing the logo with companies logo.
Why would anyone already running their own communication want internal Facebook? Because email lists aren't hip enough?
Let's say you are going to do some work with Molly from the Customer Support department. You don't really know much about her, so you bring her up on the company Facebook, and you find out that you both went to the same university around the same time. You also find out that she has experience in testing. You also see a picture of her, so that you don't have to go walking around customer service area of the office asking if anyone knows where Molly is until she finally overhears you and introduces herself.
Is any of this stuff hard to set up internally? Not really, but someone has to prioritize it, sort through existing options and pick one, or develop it in house, there needs to be support, and maintenance. All barriers to implementing something that can help foster a more open and collaborative culture.
Facebook has a great UI and there are many advantages.
Something like FB-Groups for organizations of all kind fell out as a byproduct of our startup and we are toying with the idea of trying to sell that part in isolation. Basically you get your own, hosted / self-hosted FB-Groups, plus a bit more flexibility regarding permissions and group management. For example you could introduce someone external into a sub-topic in one of your groups, without exposing him to the rest of the group (not sure if that is possible with FB groups).
Also, I'm sure they'll produce lots of insights and make lots of mistakes I can learn from...on their dime.
Additionally, Slack now has just about the best tagline in the world: 'We're not Facebook'.
Picture it this way:
1. You show up to work, and Facebook is now mandatory.
It's attached to your real name, and Facebook
helpfully connects your real profile to all your
2. You now have to delete ALL of your non-work contacts,
for fear of gossip contamination, and NEVER use
Facebook outside of work again.
3. Everyone who has Facebook at work, now needs something
to fill the gaping void of recreational social media.
4. A new upstart fills the void, and Facebook crumbles and
a. built by a company with an enterprise focus as it's core
b. built with integration with your other enterprise applications as a core principle
c. is open source
Then I have another option for you.
It's easy to deploy and you can do things such as end to end encryption, and there are many sharing/privacy options.
If you install some version of Facebook then chances are they'll try to find some way to exfiltrate or monetise your company data. Also, if you're not a US company then 100% of everything you enter into Facebook is regarded as fair game to be exfiltrated, stored, analysed, etc. Probably that's not in your best interests.
But after some thought...
It will be interesting to see how this will be differentiated from Yammer. Yammer may actually benefit from this ... companies that are considering workplace social networks may evaluate all options, and then realize that Yammer has been out for quite some time and touts over 200,000 corporate customers.
Many companies have Facebook restrictions in place, and I don't see that trend reversing due to this announcement. Yammer, separate and distinct from Facebook, may see a bump due to more companies "being interested" in work place social networks.
If I was a company looking to use a "Social Network for Work" I would prefer a separate product like Yammer instead of Facebook.
So sick of their awful practices.
What else could it be used for? Publishing news?
Even if they had something to offer, in the senior managers mind Facebook ≠ productivity.
Who would use "Facebook for work" that isn't already using "Facebook"?