Tuesday, August 10, 2010

blogher 2010 conference recap

blogher 2010 conference recap

{i didn't announce on here i was going...oops!  but i have had this button on my sidebar for a while}

for those who are completely confused... blogher is a website and hosts a yearly conference for bloggers.  when i found out that blogher10 was in NYC i figured it was a short trip from philly... and i'd attend.  now i'm back after 48ish hours of networking, talking, learning, eating, drinking and occasionally sleeping.

i have lots of thoughts.  i'll do my best to put them in some sort of an order.

first off.
i do not consider myself a writer.  yes i know i'm writing right now... but a writer is defined as
"a person engaged in writing books, articles, stories, etc., esp. as an occupation or profession; an author or journalist." and that is not one of the terms i'd use to describe myself.  i'm also not a mom.  nothing against moms... i happen to love my mom like nothing else.. but i'm not a mom.  the fact that i'm not a writer... and not a "mommyblogger" put me in the minority from the moment i walked in the door.  ...picture the look on my face when i was handed a complimentary issue of a parenting magazine... uhhhh...

words i would use to describe myself.
{and so on}

A lot of the "live" conversation that occurred at the conference happened on twitter.  Search for #blogher10 and you'll find a massive amount of tweets about the events.  A few people have tweeted things about thinking of those who could not attend before saying anything negative.

my purpose for telling you about my disappointment is in no way to complain.  i have better things to do with my time.  it is for the sole intent of sharing in hopes that blogher11 can be better than blogher10 and so on.  all good things can continue to grow and evolve. {and well for my personal memory as well}
*off my soapbox*

i gotta be honest.. i didn't know what to expect.  i hadn't read up much about what to expect... so i walked in with no expectations.  that being said i ended the weekend with positive surprises and some disappointment.

- the post sessions "geek" conversations.  with many people... but especially these three...  (creepyed) (lizhenry) (tech4moms)  i accepted my inner geek many years ago and i look at it as a strength.
- the hilton staff. especially the people who helped get me a lunch i could eat each day without getting sick {i have crazy allergies for those who aren't aware}
- borrowing my mom's ipad {now i really want one}
- swag "stuff we all get" ..aka.. free stuff.  everyone likes free stuff right?
- finally meeting sheyb in person... and sharing a hotel room with her.  we have been planning this trip for so long that it was nice to finally meet!
- spending some one on one time in NYC with jackie ... a fellow philly modern quilt guild member.
- having awkward conversations {and some not so awkward} with super cool bloggers.   like seil of green la girl
tech4moms...  kristen of rage against the minivan... julie of angry julie monday and many many more.  {i have a stack of cards i need to go through!}  the look on people's faces when i say "i'm a quilter" is priceless.

- the high school "cliqueness" at many events.  i wanted to meet lots of new people.. and i met some.. but overall there were these bubbles that you weren't getting into.
- lack of craft bloggers & sessions directed towards craft/photo/skill type people
- included vs. excluded...  all people like to feel "included"  it doesn't matter what situation... what age.  yeah i've accepted that getting picked last in gym class was because i wasn't good at playing any sports but that still doesn't mean that as a kid i didn't want to feel included.  this was no different.
- sessions over parties.  i was not aware coming in the focus that would be on the parties and free swag over the actual sessions.  call me naive but i went with the intention of attending sessions and learning... and while some sessions provided me with valuable information overall i felt let down with the content.
- the sole focus on "mommybloggers" by the majority of the sponsors.  i get it.. there are a lot of "mommybloggers" and a lot of merchandise to get them to promote & buy... but as a single/no kids not-mommyblogging woman i often felt like i was in a strange new planet that i had never heard of.

some recaps that i think are worth reading.

overall i'm happy i went.... but i didn't go for the free stuff... i went to meet people and learn a lot... i guess 1 out of 2 isn't bad.

wondering where the photos are?
genius me deleted them all off my memory card.  #fail
{i'm working on recovering them... but i didn't take many anyway}

but thanks to my little pony...
i do have one photo
getting some love from sheyb while rocking my i shoot raw t-shirt

{back to fabric related posts soon!}


PamKittyMorning said...

I've been very curious about Blogher, but had the feeling it would turn out like you said. I am a mom but not on 'active duty' anymore. Not surprised about the clique aspect at all. Thanks for sharing your experience.

OrangeRoom said...

I agree completely! Loved having one on one time with you, and I really did make some great new friends. I also made lots of new acquaintances that I hope to keep in touch with via blogs. I'm not trying to start a business, but when I tell a lot of my colleagues/friends that I blog I get a look like I just landed from Mars. So for me, I went to meet other people who blog, be in a friendly crowd of people into the same stuff I was, and see what I could learn. I didn't have a lot of expectations at the outset, and I had a really great time. But next year it's in San Diego, and I don't know if it was enough of an experience to fly across the country. But I really did enjoy my time there, in spite of any disappointments. :)
Love you! -Jackie

DianeY said...

Interesting! I forwarded it to my daughter who was also there. She hasn't told me too much other than her kids were really happy with all the free "junk" she collected. She was actually sent to it by the company she does work for

~*~ said...

I've been interested in blogher as well--but when I looked at the list of speakers I had a feeling that what you just reported was the case. :/

I wonder if that was the intent of the whole conference or maybe they just didn't think about artsy-craftsy blog folk.

If it isn't, how about a letter to the con-personel with a proposed panel or two for the artsy-craftsy people like us?

Sandy said...

And we are so happy that you are who you are!!! I went to a couple of the blogs that you posted about and truthfully I wasn't impressed. I like the warm and fuzzy feeling of the quilt and craft bloggers!!

Unknown said...

I've thought we need some sort of quilt conference aside from Market...your post really confirms this idea. I figured blogher to be this way and don't travel in those circles, so never pursued going. We should chat :)

April (Polkadot Sparrow) said...

Ugh. I know what you mean about "mommy clubs." I am a mama myself, but I am very aware that not everyone is. Not everyone even WANTS to be. You shouldn't have to feel left out just because you don't have offspring, ya know? I could go on and on about that but I won't. It is one of my pet peeves though.

Also, your tshirt is rad.

Audrie said...

Well no matter how old we get or what stage of our lives we're in, we still want to be included and feel accepted. I understand the disappointment there.

Ugh I'm always fearful of deleting my entire memory card lol That stinks!

Becky (My Fabric Obsession) said...

What a bummer. It's sad hearing that women are being cliqueish as adults. What should be a "girl Power" event becomes negative. Hopefully they'll gets feedback to that end and try and make changes

Laura said...

Im a big fan of your blog, so meeting you would be like meeting a celebrity! haha!

Keep up the good blogging work!

Barbara said...

I am female, a mother ( altho he is your age LOL ), and many other descriptive words - you, dear girl, are totally grounded in reality, which is why there are so SO many people who read your fun and helpful blog every time the update flag pops up.

Circles, potholder tuts and hexies are important in our everyday RealLives- not entitlement and swag

The foto is absolutely priceless and a great remembrance of the good times

badlandsquilts said...

Glad you were able to get some positive out of your trip...the tech sessions sound great! And also glad you were able to manage your FA...I've been doing that for almost 7 years for my kids and we just got back from a fun vacation with allergy/food success so I understand that feeling.

Anonymous said...

Julie what an experience... thanks for sharing it.. I've been curious about blogher and reading it for awhile

Melanie said...

refreshing honesty that I really appreciate. Thanks for sharing!

Vicki said...

Interesting... sorry to hear about the disappointing parts. I remember a couple years ago hearing about some (one?) craft blog session and thought that would be something that happened each year. I would love to go sometime... but I would want there to be a good group of craft bloggers, content or sessions for our niche, and focus on meeting new people/friends and avoid cliquishness.

SarahB said...

My little boy is 2 and has so many food allergies. Right now we have managed traveling by bringing every single thing for him to eat along with us and stopping at natural grocery stores as needed to stock up on his safe foods, and begging hotels w/o in-room microwaves to let us use the staff one. I'm so happy to hear the Hilton staff was so accommodating!

Terriaw said...

Sounds like a relatively good conference, but I really liked reading your recap of it. The positives and negatives are such a good way to put things in perspective. I'm surprised there weren't more crafty bloggers for speakers, since they have the best first-hand experience to share. Too bad about the targeted sponsors too, which don't help a broader audience. Thanks for sharing this with us!

Natalia from Piece N Quilt said...

It was nice to read your feedback. At least you were somewhat close too! :) Maybe next year will be better though! :)

Dianah said...

Thank you for telling us the pros and cons of Blogher. I have been reading tons about the free stuff and that's about it. I was thinking of going next year since it is in San Diego and I could drive it. I don't consider myself a "Mommy Blogger" or a craft blogger but something in the middle. I will be rethinking this one.

Christine said...

I'd never heard of Blogher. Its too bad it wasn't all you hoped for. I'm suprised the mommy blogger was such a focus.

Live a Colorful Life said...

I have would have enjoyed seeing people's faces when you said you were a quilter. This was such an interesting recap, along with the comments. Thanks for the report.

Anne at Film and Thread said...

What a fascinating report. I have heard a lot about it, but your report gave a good summary. Those "Mommy Bloggers" and the sponsors better realize that someday their kids are going to be grown up and gone (speaking from experience here) and it is important to have things you value in your life that are outside of your children.

So glad that you were able to have some fun with a few good blog friends.

momto2wasd said...

Thanks for sharing your experience. It sounds similar to what I've read other places--kind of lukewarm, and questioning what sounds like the shallowness of it.
I'm a mommy, started blogging very recently, and have always wanted to be a real writer. However, I don't quite fit into the "mommy" category for many reasons, and I don't understand how, no matter how hard we try, women somehow end up being pigeonholed as "mommy types" or "career women" or whatever the hip thing of the day seems to be. It doesn't happen with men, does it? Or do I just not see it with men?

Tracey Jacobsen said...

I was always picked last too...

And one day I plan to hang with you at quilt market...

And dang those mommy bloggers. ;)

mascanlon said...

Julie I come here because you are always you! That comes through in your posts and photos and certainly in person. So come to san Diego and we'll have a craft session...I don't even bog but I know some incredible fabrics stores in SD.

MWalker said...

Thanks for sharing! I've actually moved away from the mommy-bloggy circle because I sucked at it, LOL, though I still frequent some of their blogs. Bummer it wasn't as fantaboulous as you hoped.

Let's here it for the girl picked last for sports!!! Woo-hoo! ;o)

holly k said...

LOL!!! Hahahaha...you are funny! I think you are a fantastic writer. There are no rules with writing, some will like it, some won't. I suppose the same goes for those attending whatever blogher is...might be for some but not for all.

It's often frustrating when you pay good money (that you could otherwise buy fabric with) on events such as you attended and then sadly didn't learn as much as you'd hoped...bummer...now tell me where you are getting all your neptune!!!

Love the pic! Looks like just that shot might have made the trip worth it!

Sarah Kimmel said...

I had so much fun meeting you too! I agree that the sessions weren't SUPER informative. I did get a few things out of the ones I went to, so that makes me happy (Plus maybe I got some customers too from the one I met you at!)

Sarah Kimmel

Kristen Howerton said...

Gee - how could your conversation with me have been awkward? Truly . . . I can't imagine. ;)

It was really fun meeting you.

Unknown said...

I am so glad you posted all the info about this. The good and the bad is all really important especially to those of us who don't go, can't go etc. Even bloggers who are also Mommy's aren't Mommy-bloggers, (me, for instance) so it's always good to get the perspective from someone else who is not a "Mommy-blogger" -- not that there's anything wrong with that!

Very Shannon said...

Thanks for this post. I was feeling sad about not being able to go and having never been, felt like I was missing out.
I think I too would have gone for information and to learn, with a bonus of meeting all the wonderful women out there. So this gives a lot of insight. I am a very outgoing person but cliques totally turn me off.
I like to think of myself as a craft blogger/mommy. I would have been right in there for photographing and craft info sessions. Sad to know that wasn't there.
Maybe we should start our own craft blogging convention? Can one come to Canada? I think us craft bloggers are sorely left out of the equation a lot.
blogging isn't all about swag either. i'm sure like me, you do it because you love it and are passionate about it, not for free loot.
hugs to you and welcome home :)

Mary said...

Thanks for your honest appraisal! I read another account of the event by a "mommy-blogger" and she loved it, but it definitely didn't sound crafty-blogger oriented. A crafty bloggers convention would ROCK!

Anonymous said...

I think Blogher was good the first couple of years. It was about the sessions and meeting people. Now it's about getting stuff. You are not the only one I have heard these complaints from- a lot of attendees have them this year. Especially those who are not in the clique.

Sorry it was a bummer. Buy yourself some fabric to make yourself feel better. Maybe some Neptune.... :)