Evalueserve acquires Nitron Circle of Experts

Evalueserve Ltd.I’m happy to report that Evalueserve has acquired Nitron Advisors. I originally met with some of the senior management at EVS because I was recruiting them to consult for some clients. That conversation led to another conversation, and another, which led to an offer, which led to an acquisition. I plan to continue running Nitron with my partner Scott Lichtman, now with a much larger platform in the emerging markets.

Evalueserve has been a rocket ship of a company, and a perfect fit for our long-term strategy for Nitron. Both our clients and our experts will benefit from this relationship. Clients will get access to the largest knowledge process outsourcing company, with 1,800 people in India, China, and Chile. Experts will see increased consultation volume from a wide range of clients.

We have already launched an Indian expert network, which should be of particular interest to any readers who are investing or doing business in India. We have also launched a Media Source Center, a service to provide a very small number of elite journalists with free access to high quality media sources, for stories related to the emerging markets. If you know any journalists covering the emerging markets, they are welcome to contact us to apply for this service.

More details here:
http://www.circleofexperts.com/nitron-evs-merger.aspx

You can read more about Evalueserve at http://evalueserve.com/ .

UPDATE: For Integrity Research’s comments on the acquisition, see http://integrityresearch.blogdrive.com/archive/826.html .

Free Speech and Censorship in Online Communities

Earlier this year, I blogged about some of the ongoing debates I’ve seen regarding online communities and free speech. Some users seem to think that the right of free speech applies everywhere, when in reality, it doesn’t. In fact, the very same right of free speech that allows people to say whatever they want also allows discussion list organizers and online community owners to choose not to carry certain kinds of speech. In fact, read the user agreements of most online communities and you’ll find a whole host of prohibited speech that you might be able to say in other venues.

David helped me flesh out my original blog post into our latest column over at FastCompany.com:

Free Speech and Censorship in Online Communities

LinkedIn Makes Major Change in Invitations Policy

Since its inception, LinkedIn has always positioned itself as being a tool for leveraging your connections with people you know – yes, in order to meet new people, but incrementally, not en masse. However, with now ten million professionals who you can invite to connect if you know their e-mail address, it has also become popular among so-called “open networkers” – people willing to link with people they don’t know.

The challenge LinkedIn faces is that it wants to allow people to connect with as many people as they want to connect with, but at the same time protecting people from receiving unwanted invitations from people they don’t know. A significant number of people have left LinkedIn because of “invitation spam”.

Well, LinkedIn may have finally come upon a solution. On the one hand, they no longer require an e-mail address in order to invite someone who’s already a LinkedIn member to connect. On the other hand, they’ve also made it so that recipients can indicate that they don’t know the person sending the invitation. Five such “strikes” and the person’s account gets automatically suspended.

Does this mean the end of open networking on LinkedIn? No – it just means open networkers will have to make sure the recipient is agreeable to receiving the invitation before they send it. A little more work, but it puts the burden where it belongs.

More details at Linked Intelligence.

MIT CIO Symposium: Networks for Competitive Advantage

I look forward to speaking at the MIT CIO Symposium on May 17 in Boston.

“This year’s theme explores how social networks in business can revolutionize the processes by which people, partners and customers work together to create value. Social networks and related technology have gained prominence recently as sources of entertainment.”

Speakers include:

* Dr. Paul Barth
Managing Partner NewVantage Partners LLC
* Mr. Gary Beach
Publisher CIO magazine
* Mr. Sean Belka
SVP Fidelity
* Mr. Sheldon Borkin
VP of Technology Progress Software
* Prof. Erik Brynjolfsson
Professor MIT Sloan School
* Alan Chhabra
Principal, Technical Program Management Team, Egenera
* Mr. Peter Cohen
General Manager Amazon Mechanical Turk
* Mr. Rich Corley
CEO Akorri
* Mr. Frank Enfanto
VP of Healthcare Services Blue Cross/Blue Shield
* Mr. Glenn Engler
EVP Digitas
* Mr. Charlie Feld
Snr. EVP, Applications Services EDS
* Ms. Mary Finlay
Deputy CIO Partners Healthcare
* Mr. John Gallant
Editorial Director and President Network World
* Prof. John Henderson
Professor, Faculty Director Information Systems Department, Boston University
* Ms. Rosalee Hermens
VP and CIO Timberland
* Ms. Jo Hoppe
CIO Pegasystems
* Ms. Maryfran Johnson
Founding Editor in Chief, CIO Decisions Magazine
* Mr. Kumud Kalia
CIO Direct Energy
* Mr. Stephen Laster
CIO Harvard Business School
* Prof. Thomas W. Malone
McGovern Professor of Management MIT Sloan School
* Mr. Thornton May
Futurist, Executive Director and Dean IT Leadership Academy
* Mr. David McFarlane
COO, Nexaweb
* Mr. Mark McGinness
Vice President, Business Development Expedient
* Mr. Paul Nielson
SVP Monster
* Mr. Steve Papa
Co-founder and CEO Endeca
* Mr. John Polizzi
SVP and CIO BJ’s Wholesale Club
* Mr. JP Rangaswami
CIO, Global Services BT
* Mr. Tim Rowe
CEO Cambridge Innovation Center
* Ms. Joyce Salisbury
Manager of Interactive Research Tool Development GM
* Mr. Claudio Silvestri
CIO Cognos
* Mr. Richard Soley
Chairman and CEO Object Management Group, Inc.
* Prof. Glen Urban
Professor MIT Sloan School
* Prof. Peter Weill
Director, CISR MIT Sloan School
* Dr. George Westerman
Research Scientist MIT Center for Information Systems Research
* Prof. John Williams
Prof Information Engineering and Director MIT Auto-ID Lab

Register here

InfoWorld: Social Media: Overhyped or Under-executed? Strategies for Success.

I hope to see you at this upcoming event:

Sponsor: InfoWorld
Title: Social Media Breakfast: Overhyped or Under-executed? Strategies for Success.
Location: Roosevelt Hotel, New York City
Time: Tuesday, May 15, 2007, 8:00 a.m.-10:00 a.m.

Register for this complimentary event by clicking here: http://www.infoworld.com/3909

Social Media is experiencing phenomenal growth. As a highly effective and efficient way to communicate with Information Technology professionals, IT Peer to Peer Communities are gaining ground quickly. Yet key questions remain on how to best market to this new media.

Topics includes:
* New proprietary research on Social Media trends and technologies
* Hear from expert panelists on Social Media implementation and ROI opportunities
* Testimonials from marketing and advertising executives using Social Communities today

Experts participating in panel discussions:
* Julien Blin, Research Analyst and Social Media Expert, IDC
* Allen Fear, Director of Online Content & Production, InfoWorld
* David Teten, Co-Managing Director, Nitron Circle of Experts; Author, The Virtual Handshake
* Mike Walsh, CEO, Leverage Software
* Additional speakers TBD

By attending the InfoWorld breakfast you will gain expertise in the following topics:
* Tips for developing ads that connect with your target audience
* Measurement techniques and how new tools/metrics are being used to determine ROI
* Ideas on building IT Community loyalty
* Evaluating communications potential and coverage
* Marketing vehicles used to best communicate in an IT Peer to Peer Community.

http://www.infoworld.com/3909

If you would like to invite a colleague to attend this event with you, please forward this email and have them register for a complimentary pass.

Free copies of The Virtual Handshake

The folks at Landslide have figured out a great marketing strategy: If you view a demo of their “sales workstyle management” system, they’ll give you a free copy of The Virtual Handshake–Opening Doors and Closing Deals Online.

Alex Salkever of Inc. wrote in Turning Sales Into Science that Landslide “gives sales staffers what they need, when they need it, to close a deal.” In other words, Landslide provides salespeople more infrastructure, so that they can focus more on selling and less on all of the other activities that distract them from their main job.

Link: Watch a Landslide demo, get a copy of The Virtual Handshake

Smart Ways to Use LinkedIn – A Group Blogging Project

For a long time, I’ve been wanting to compile some kind of easy resource to help communicate the benefits of LinkedIn to potential users (and to answer the nay-sayers who don’t understand its usefulness). That’s a big task. You could write a book on it, right?

Finally, I realized that it made a whole lot more sense as a group effort. And so, I came up with Smart Ways to Use LinkedIn – A Group Blogging Project.

If you have a LinkedIn success story to tell, or tips on how to accomplish a particular task with LinkedIn, this is a great opportunity to share it. I have over $4,000 in prizes to give away to participants. And you may want to hurry… there are a couple of special bonuses for the first participants.

If this works like I hope it will, the LinkedIn user community will have a great resource for explaining LinkedIn to friends and for answering the nay-sayers.

Happy blogging!