September 28, 2010

DB2 Pros Take to Social Media

The evolution of the Internet has opened up new ways for DB2 professionals to connect with their colleagues.

It wasn't that long ago that DB2-L and other list servers were the primary vehicle for DB2 users to interact and get quick help with problems. And of course this and other blogs -- like the excellent PlanetDB2 -- also serve to provide information and foster discussion.

But now the DB2 community has expanded to Facebook, Twitter and beyond. Here are just a few places the DB2 pro can go:

Facebook Groups

•    DB2 for z/OS – Ultimate Data Server

•    DB2 on Campus

•    DB2 Documentation

•    IBM DB2

•    The Face of DB2 DBAs

•    @troycoleman
•    @DB2utor
•    @IBMRedbooks
•    IDUGConference

Linkedin Groups

•    DB2 Professionals

•    IDUG: The World Wide DB2 User Community

•    DB2 for z/OS – What’s On!

In my mind none of these forums should be viewed as a replacement for any other. DB2-L is still the first place I go to get help with a database issue, and I continue to rely on blogs for the latest in technology new and events. But now, I also use Facebook to share a bit about my personal life and get to know my DB2 colleagues. I use Linkedin to network with industry professionals -- it's a good way to land a job or help others find work. And -- while I know of friends who use Twitter to get immediate help with serious database problems -- my tweets are generally limited to blasting out notes about this blog and offering real-time observations about conference sessions I'm sitting at. I also follow a number of folks on Twitter.

I realize that many employers prohibit access to sites like Facebook and Twitter. But as companies learn how social media can help employees in their jobs, some are easing their restrictions. For instance, when I started at CA Technologies last year, I couldn't access any of these sites. But recently CA defined a social media policy and provided training sessions to guide employees on what they should and shouldn't do on social networking sites during their work hours. Once you read the policy and take the training, you receive access to these social media sites.

What about you? Has your company modified its policies in this area? Register your thoughts on social media in Comments.