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Wil, I was a fan before this post but am even more so now. You are a good egg Wil Wheaton.
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Congratulations David. Isn't this ever changing communication technology amazing? People used to wait for days for an opportunity to meet the President of the United States at a campaign stop or other public event. Now you can send the POTUS a tweet and have it answered and documented for posterity all online. Now if we could get a real journalistic type experience via this type of channel; that would be truly revolutionary. Last point. You are absolutely right this is no substitute for main stream media or face to face engagement with the public but giving more citizens access to our President is definitely a great supplement to those traditional points of access.
Thanks for the post Dan. We are super excited about this. I think this is going to open up worlds of opportunities for both communities. Sorry you can't make it this year Donna, but you have a year's notice for 2012 8).
We have the same goals Aliza. That's why I appreciated your post, and your continued hard work on this 8).
Let me start off by defending Aliza. For those that don't know she and I and a few other folks have been discussing this for over 2 years now. I know her post was meant to be as constructive as possible. That said, here are some facts about our event. For the last 3 years now for whatever reason, our ratio of women to men speakers is 64/65% men to 35/36% women. It mirrors our attendance exactly and according to surveys it matches the overall demographics of the blogosphere. But that is only part of the story. We don't have any goal going into planning the event each year for women to men, or black to white, minority to majority, liberal to conservative. But we absolutely go into every event and nearly every single session asking who is a non-white male who can speak this year? Give a keynote? Give this talk, or be on this panel? That credit goes to Dave Taylor. He served as our conference director for the first show in 2007. During one of our early planning calls he said "we should really reach out and get more women to speak". The thought had never occurred to me but the moment he said it, I knew he was right. From that moment our thought process has been as I described above. Not to meet any kind of pre-conceived diversity agenda but to accurately represent and serve the blogosphere / socialmediasphere as a whole. It is true we have fewer female keynoters this year than we did last year (7 in 2009). But it wasn't for lack of effort. Susan Bratton can tell you much to her disappointment we have been trying for two years to put together a panel of "Leading Women of the Social Media World" without success. In fact this year after months of effort with zero success we simply changed her panel to a different topic and invited the best speakers we could find for the topic. Susan deserved to be on our stage and so she is there even if it is with two brilliant men. I am not going to mention the list of women we approached who turned us down for all sorts of reasons because it is irrelevant to the discussion imo. Why is it so hard for us to find great women speak our keynote our event? 90% of our submissions are from men to start. So we have to literally chase that additional 25% to get them on stage. Do you want to hear an even more shocking fact? When I ask women I know in the social media space who do they think would be a great female keynoter at BlogWorld, the list is always a very short one. One, two or three names at the most. Trust me, I have asked a lot of woman this question. As Deb mentioned our first goal is to have GREAT CONTENT for our attendees. We will never substitute a woman for a man just because she is a woman. It's wrong and it’s not going to happen at our event. We are very proud of the quality of our content and we are happy to compare it to any other social media event in the world. One last point, we are not a tech conference. BlogWorld & New Media Expo is a CONTENT EVENT. The technology is just something we use to distribute our content. BlogWorld is all about content creators and our goal is to help them create, distribute and monetize that content. We are very proud of the work we put into this event and we are very proud of the fact that we are by far the most diverse conference in the social media world. You can read more about that in a post I put up in 2008 here: Sincerely, Rick Calvert CEO & Co-Founder BlogWorld & New Media Expo
To be clear, this free registration includes the milblog track on the 15th, and the exhibit floor where the milblog lounge will be located on Oct 16 and 17 as well as the parties Oct 15 16 and 17. So as the saying goes the drinks are on me! completely agree with your points KD. That's why getting real representatives of the military and milblogging community there is so important, so people how may have never spoken to a real live Marine, Soldier, Airman or Sailor can see for themselves how lucky we all are to have so many amazing individuals serving today. I tell every person I can who comes to blogworld to attend the milblog sessions because I know for a fact they will walk out of that room with a new perspective and most likely crying their eyes out.
Toggle Commented Sep 29, 2009 on A Direct Challenge To You at BlackFive
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Let me be clear why I issued this challenge to Blake. We have held the milblogging track at BlogWorld for two years now and both times numerous people have come up to me and said "I've never even heard of a milblog before". That my friends is a shame. The truth is with all the amazing new media technologies we have today like blogs, podcasts and twitter that allow us to connect with people from all over the world, we self segregate in our own small communities. Milblogs are a victim of that segregation and in part guilty of it. Milblogs are mostly read by folks currently serving, or retired and their immediate family and a small group of civilian supporters like me. I personally believe milblogs are one of the single most important and powerful genre's in the blogosphere. Every American Citizen at least should be aware of them. That's why we host the milblog track at BlogWorld. We want to help make other civilians aware of blogs like Blackfive, Mudville Gazette, Op For, Froggy Ruminations (old school), Michael Yon and all the other amazing individuals who go the extra mile not only to serve and sacrifice for our country but to share their experiences with the rest of us. Getting more of you to show up will make more civilians aware of what you do every day on their behalf and the civilians who come to our show have huge audiences. If we get just a few of the uber tech and sports and marketing bloggers to come to just one of the milblogging sessions they in turn can tell millions of people about you. Other than that, its free, and a lot of fun! So I hope you accept the challenge and are able to make it out to Vegas Oct 15 - 17. Sincerely, Rick Calvert BlogWorld
Toggle Commented Sep 28, 2009 on A Direct Challenge To You at BlackFive
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