Originally published August 5 2005--note, some links may be dead
I tried to blog while at BlogHerCon last week and it was not particularly a success. I was so wired I couldn't think or type coherently. I am not alone in this. There's even Blogging Blogher.. (Great photos from Waiting for Dorothy)
Also, in the run-up to BlogHer I missed the online community BlogSheroes.
What follows is an overview.
I've let the exhilaration of the day settle for a week, and I'm ready to go forward.
First, an outline of the day: I determined I was going to meet as many people as possible, so I started the day by introducing myself to two people while we were in the registration line. One was Amy Gahran, who writes Contentious. I noticed her jacket, which was really pretty. The other was Koan Bremner. The thing Koan does not reveal is that she has the most beautiful voice. I think I'd like to listen to her read the want ads, even.
We then filed into the main hall for the morning session, which was Debate: Play by today's rules--or change the game?. More on that later, here.
The break included affinity groups. I convened "My Blog is My Soapbox"--More on that later, here.
For the first session, I went to Blogging 101, lead by Susan Mernit and Julie Leung (I'd met Julie on-line before, so that's why I chose Blogging 101). Barbie2b liveblogged that session. More on that later, here
The working lunch session was Flame, Blame & Shame, lead by Lisa Sabater. The panel included Alisa Valdes-Rodrigues, Ellen Spertus, Judith Meskill and Debi Jones, better known as Mobile Jones. More on that later, here
After lunch, there were three 45-minute sessions. I went to: How to Get Naked, a panel on identity blogging lead by Blogher organizer Jory Des Jardins, Heather Armstrong (Dooce), Ronni Bennett (the link is to her thoughts on her presentation) & the afore-mentioned Koan Bremner (who was later in a not-funny conversation with Amber Nykola -more reported by Ronni. (live blogged by Melissa Gira More on that session later, here
Blogs in Academia (part of the Room of Your Own (RoYO) sessions, was ably lead by Grace Davis, (re-entry student) Lizzard Henry, (graduate student) and profgrrrl (full professor). (Here's some back-story) Lizzard's stream of consciousness post about the academia panel. For now, Julie's post on the conference. Live-ish blogging from lunisea)More on this later. (I thought this discussion was the most important of the conference.) Read all about it here
There was a lively 90 minutes of conversation at the cocktail reception following. Some folks I talked with here. Grace had a group over on Sunday; I was back at the horseshow.
Beth Kantor (who I didn't meet) has a great series of posts and photos.
Liz Lawley, writing at Corante, has a great summary. So does Eric at CollabuTech. Finslippy covers the whole thing. (lots of comments, too, and the mommy-blog imbroglio).
It wasn't long before I realized what we'd taken part in was as much a group Rorschach test as it was a communal experience. No matter how much we shared or talked or had in common, each attendee arrived with a personal agenda and, even though some contents shifted in transit, each left seeing the majority-female conference through that same personal prism.
(I've been roaming around looking at posts not otherwise linked: Standing Cheese thought the whole thing was pointless:
What a stupid [effing] thing Blogher is/was. If you want to get together and have a women’s blogging fest where you hang out and meet the “stars” more power to you. Some people do that here on a local level every month or so. But to package it as something important and meaningful is a sham. Why the hell was there a Blogging 101 class anyway? Shouldn’t everyone there already be beyond the basics?"
Fiat Lux, who lives on the San Francisco Peninsula, decided not to go:
Part of me feels that I ought to go to show support for fellow women bloggers, but I can't summon any enthusiasm at all for the event. Perhaps it is because after having spent the better part of a decade working in the technology world, the concept of "wow, let's have an event where all the techie women can get together" has lost its freshness for me.
But even more than that, I think it is because I resist being labelled as a "woman blogger". I am a woman, and I have a blog. But Fiat Lux is not a "woman's blog" any more than it is a "Jewish blog" or even a "left-wing blog". It's MY blog.
I don't consider myself a "woman blogger" either -- I Speak of Dreams is really a way of recording what I am thinking about, and a way to make me think more clearly. I'm glad I went because of the huge (but not all-inclusive) range of interests and voices.
Noticing who was not represented.