This paper describes research concerning two companies that have been seeking to improve collaboration and communication internally across functional and departmental boundaries through the introduction of intranets. In one case, the development and introduction of the system lead to unintended, negative effects; in the other, there is preliminary evidence to suggest that the results have been much more positive. The experiences of the two companies help to reinforce lessons that have been known for some time – in relation, for example, to socio-technical systems and Information Systems (IS) failures (e.g. Bostrom & Heinen, 1977a,b). The fact that these two cases are contemporary and that there appears to be evidence that some of the lessons of the past have been forgotten or have remained unheard, suggests nonetheless that the comparison may be enlightening.