Vor dem Hintergrund einer langen Tradition von “inward-looking and high-context based company-communities” beschreibt der Autor, wie japanische Unternehmen mehr und mehr dazu übergehen, knowledge communities aufzubauen, und wie sie dabei einen ganz eigenen Ansatz entwickeln, Tradition und Technologie zu verbinden. Besonders auffällig, so der Autor, sei der häufige Gebrauch von Nicknames in online communities:
“Another feature is that in some top-level companies, knowledge communities are operational on an employee-nick-name basis (knowledge exchange based on handle name). Actually, this trend is a big surprise even to me, though I was born and raised in Japan. Use of multiple identities such as handle-name on internet had been considered incompatible with Japanese traditional culture for a long time.
However, it is being gradually accepted in business community that the use of a nickname enables employees to exchange knowledge more easily, irrespective of organizational hierarchy. Interestingly, use of nickname revived altruism, another Japanese tradition of collectivism, in the new form.”