In the end, the 140 Characters Conference (#140conf) turned out to be two of the best days of my life. There was an energy present in the room which was pretty amazing. Just watch part II of “twitter of a News Gathering Tool” to get a feel of what I am referring to. Feel free to browse some of the blog posts and news stories posted to: http://140conf.com/news to hear what some of the attending delegates had to say about the event.
#140conf brought together a community of people with diverse backgrounds from across multiple industries from literally around the world. There are too many people to thank for their individual contributions but I just wanted everyone to know that their contributions were appreciated and I look forward to working with them again.
One of my goals of creating and producing #140conf was to in effect enable what could be best described as: “Social Media Heterosis” (hybrid vigor in the social media space) and cross connect communities which are all using twitter as a platform to communicate for their business but would have otherwise have never had any reason to meet each or connect with each other. (Special thanks to Becky McCray for introducing me to the word “hybrid vigor”)
I first started creating / hosting / producing events in 1996. Over the years the formats of my events have evolved and what 500 people experienced last week at New World Stages was my new recipe for producing events. I believe most events suffer from too-many-breakout-sesion-itis. My solution to this problem is to offer everyone the same shared common experience. This is a chance for everyone who chooses to be in the room to hear what everyone else is saying. This is a chance for a community to bond together and a chance for a voice to resonate. This is why I choose to produce the event on an off-Broadway stage and why I ran everything in the same room.
I believe that everyone IS a Character. That every voice is important and should be heard. While I hope my guests enjoyed hearing from some of the people they knew of before they attended #140conf, I also hope they brought home the voices of some of the people who they didn’t know before but discovered at #140conf. (Personally, I thought Christopher R. Weingarten from RollingStone.com was just amazing. Watch his performance at: http://pulverblog.pulver.com/archives/008954.html)
The introduction of the 10 minute speaker format (see #140conf schedule) mostly worked and offered an opportunity for the discovery of more people and more information than can happen in a traditional conference setting. If you would like to view some of the 69 recorded video sessions from #140conf, you can request viewing access by visiting: http://140conf.com/mailing-list.
I believe the “State of NOW” represents a big shift in the nature of how we will use the Internet and I look at just about everyone who is a member of the #140conf community to be a pioneer in this new field. I believe I achieved my stated goal of “producing an event that explored the use of twitter as a platform and looked at the effects of twitter on: Celebrity, The Media, Advertising and Politics.”
The goal wasn’t to be “just a twitter conference” but rather look at how a diverse group of people are being effected by twitter and provide a platform for people to listen, learn and connect with the people who were sharing their voices and perspectives.
As my short conference format evolves, I am sure it will offer more time for interactive questions. I did ask each of the Characters who spoke to make it a point to stay around and talk with everyone. I thank everyone who listened and I hope more will take this request to heart at future events. When we take questions from the audience, I will ask that questions and/or statements are done in 140 characters or less to allow more time for interaction.
Based on the success of #140conf, I have already started work on two additional events, #140conf: LA and #140conf: London. It is my intention for each event to build upon the characteristics of the city which is located in while continuing to add to the diversity of the communities represented.
I’m happy to announce that Kodak has come forward to be the title sponsor of both #140conf: LA and #140conf: London. This said, I am looking for other companies interested in sponsoring as well as companies which would like to be part of the #140conf Application Showcase.
I am also looking for people to nominate “Characters” for these events. The nomination process is already underway. The deadline for nominations is: July 24th. (If you have any questions about this process, please feel free to contact me directly.)
Special thanks to Social Approach and the work they continue to put into http://live.140conf.com. You can use their platform to subscribe to all of the characters from #140conf.
Special thanks also to our #140conf exhibitors:
Special thanks also to Porter Novelli who sponsored our VIP Reception on June 15th and to Partners 1993, Inc. who sponsored our Networking Party on June 16th.
— Jeff Pulver