>Walled Gardens

>Just read a great article in the NYTimes about The Death of the Open Web by Virginaia Heffernan. As someone who runs a welled garden site (for former and current IBM employees, http://www.greateribm.com) I can speak to both the benefits and challenges. The high signal to noise ratio that I can provide for my users is worth its weight in gold — and that’s one of the things that an intranet provides an employer too (a way to crank down the volume of the ads, obscenity and other cyber detritus on the web for its employees.) Most intranets and marketing-run walled garden website don’t run ads, though I have seen a few. I suppose you could argue that they are just one big advertisement, but if the value offered to the user is high enough, it isn’t really an ad at all. What do you think?