A fairly good sized-crew of my colleagues attended the Web 2.0 Conference in SF last week and returned to the office with a treasure trove of information. (Unfortunately, I was locked in the Mandalay Bay Conf Center in Vegas for IOUG Collaborate at the time.) We have some very interesting new ideas to look into this summer.
What I find personally discouraging, however, is the complete lack of Oracle mindshare in this area. Even SAP was mentioned several times at the Web 2.0 conference for its endorsement of social media - which surprises me greatly, because I find SDN to be a rather pale imitation of OTN (but hey, I'm biased). (Some inside baseball on this point: I happen to know through personal experience that some of the top leadership at SDN didn't even know what RSS is as recently as a year ago.)
In particular, Oracle gets zero credit in this community for its rather aggressive support of blogging (by employees and nonemployees), despite the fact that a rather large blogging community exists and has for some time. There appears to be the perception out there that either this community does not exist, or that if it does exist, it must be "centrally controlled" by some evil PR mastermind - and neither assertion is even remotely accurate. (Caveat: Yes, executive blogs do get scrutiny from PR, as executives have special fiduciary responsibilities.)
OTN has also been on the sharpest of cutting edges in terms of podcasting, integration with del.icio.us, and Semantic Web. Again, this fact goes completely unrecognized by the Web 2.0/social media cognescenti.
Please forgive the rant, but you can probably imagine my frustration. Obviously, we're doing a poor job of marketing in this area - or perhaps the Oracle brand is simply not "wired" this way. Or maybe I shouldn't even care!