Blogs, wikis, activity feeds and other user-generated content are turning intranets into vibrant internal social networks. But what should be done with all that content, much of which gets old fast? In the newest version of its software, social intranet software vendor ThoughtFarmer has released a new archiving tool just for that purpose.

The company cites a 2012 Social Intranet Study by Prescient Digital, which found that 61 percent of companies have adopted at least one social feature for their intranet. ThoughtFarmer itself found that more than 80 percent of user-generated content never gets removed from intranets, which compounds the complexity of finding the right piece of information by crowding search results and online team spaces.

ROTten Content

The company said that, in its user testing, it found that users “are scared to delete” content because deletion feels like a permanent removal.

The new archiving feature is a part of ThoughtFarmer’s version 6.0 of its software, released this week. With one click, users can hide content that is considered “ROTten” -- redundant, outdated and/or trivial. Managers can identify and quickly archive large swaths of content based on frequency of use, and use a “stale content” function to locate and hide unused content. Archived material can still be accessed and searched wherever it might be in the intranet.


ThoughtFarmer 6.0 Archive

Other features in the new version include a revamped interface for editing, adding and publishing content that enables what the company describes as “intuitive authoring;” new tools for searching, finding and storing documents; and a variety of small user experience updates that the company said favorably impacts usability.

Drag and Drop, Templating

In the new release, drag and drop can now be used to upload files, and clicking a file opens a preview window. When editing is done, and the “done editing” button is clicked, ThoughtFarmer automatically uploads the new version. Additionally, users can make a template out of any page or file in the intranet.

Founded in 2005, the Vancouver, Canada-based intranet provider is owned by OpenRoad, a private web application development company. ThoughtFarmer, which said it originated the term “social intranet,” began with a client assignment to create an intranet that would connect a dispersed workforce and a knowledge repository.