Crayons of Reality

It's Thursday and I had planned to do more BlogHer pictures - but I have been doing some thinking, and perhaps I need to further explore what's on my mind.

I realize I have come off pretty negative on the whole BlogHer thing - in terms of BlogHer as a group and organization, as well as an event.

Maybe I'm not giving them a fair shake. Maybe I'm too far outside the whole thing to be able to accurately assess the value proposition here. Maybe I just don't get it.

But this I do know - were it not for BlogHer, most of the people I met over the weekend would still be ephemeral and unrealized. They would still be avatars and thumbnails and emotions plastered on pages of the Internet - real, and yet, unreal. BlogHer gave me real people to talk to, hug and interact with. BlogHer colored in all those people, behind all those posts, with the crayons of reality.

For all the complaining I've done, I owe BlogHer so much for having given me so much. I'm sure there are people who went there and got just as much out of BlogHer as I did - just as I am sure there are others whose expectations were, for one reason or another, not met.

Would I do it differently? I'd like to - but how? The sponsors are necessary in order to help control costs. The only other way to control costs would be to do a Woodstock and hold it in some farmer's field. It would minimize costs, anyway.

No, I guess, when you stop and think about it, maybe all the accoutrement of business that now surrounds BlogHer has become necessary in order to allow 1300 women and a few men to be in the same place at the same time and to be able to relate to one another in relative comfort.


See y'all in New York. I just don't know if I'll have a ticket.



Anonymous said...

It's okay, Lou. I feel the same way that you do. I haven't decided if I will go to NYC. We shall see. Either way, I know that BlogHer was a bittersweet experience for me-- Mainly now because I know all of you, and it has me missing you more than I would had you just been photos on a screen.


Nicole said...

Grin, I know, I won't be in New York, but I WILL envy you guys a tiny bit for being able to meet up.
Glad you came to the conclusion that it was a decent enough experience after all.
Meeting you harem in reality must have been great indeed ;)

Jientje said...

I don't think a farmer's field would be a good idea.
And if it had not been for BlogHer, I would not be coming to the States in November, so I guess BlogHer has given me a lot to be thankful for. Even if I was not there, and probably never will be.

Although I hate to use the word NEVER.

Shadow said...

this IS weighing on your mind... give it some time. your thoughts will clear. and you'll know...

moneythoughts said...

1300 women and a few guys? What's not to like? I understand where you are coming from as I think you hit the nail on the head when you introduced the word "expectations". That has a lot to do with how a person would perceive the value of BlogHer. But, the bottom line is you had a great time and you got to meet many people you wanted to meet. Next year in NYC should be something else. You know, I may try to make that one.

calicobebop said...

If you go to NY I'll be sure to read all about it from your blog. :) I like your perspective.

Ashlie- Mommycosm said...

Ticket or not, I'll be in NY. It's drivable for me, so I can even make a last second decision this time.

My only expectation is to finally meet my favorite bloggers in person. If I manage to accomplish anything else, it will just be gravy :)

Nan said...

I guess with anything so BIG, you're bound to get positives and negatives.

Hyphen Mama said...

It's like college: some people are there for the partying and sex, some people are there for the education, some people are there for the friendships they'll have for the rest of their lives.

You get all kinds.

I'd love to see it in a farmer's field... because THEN I'd be there.

Employee No. 3699 said...

Buy your ticket now, before they sell out!!!!!

Momisodes said...

I will probably be in NYC. Mainly because it's drivable for me, and it's my favorite city. Like you, I'm not sure if I'll have ticket.

Huckdoll said...

I echo Shadow...obviously this is weighing on your mind. I don't think there was any reason to further explain yourself and that the first post you did was honest and real. I'm a little disappointed to see you stressing over it to be honest.

Anyway, you won't see me in NYC unless it's in the winter with my man - a lifelong dream I plan to carry out. Maybe there is something wrong in my blogger circuiting, but attending a BlogHer to hug people and party never has and never will be on my list of priorities.

Joyce-Anne said...

Since I live outside of NYC, fortunately I don't have an excuse to miss BlogHer '10 or at least (if I don't buy a ticket) meet some of my favorite bloggers while they are in town. :D

Anonymous said...

I'm sad that your BlogHer experience wasn't what you were hoping for and I agree that without the sponsors, the gathering wouldn't have been nearly the level that it was.

As a person who organizes conferences, I feel for the BlogHer team as they debate how to best incorporate sponsors and how involved they should get in third-party receptions. (Elisa did a very interesting post if you haven't seen it).

Personally, I got what I came for. If you didn't, I'd certainly encourage you to raise your suggestions to the BlogHer crew.

Hope to see you next year.

Eric S. said...

Perhaps it was the event itself that caused the "negativeness" Large conferences can do things like that. Also, it's probably just like life, there are a lot of people in the mix that are not exactly positive. But so many others stand out above the crowd.

CaraBee said...

While my Blogher experience wasn't quite what I expected, that has more to do with my lack of knowledge about how these things go. Having said that, it wasn't negative. Overall, it was positive. I got to meet and spend time with friends that I might not have otherwise. I may go to NYC. I may only buy a one day ticket. We'll see.

Loraine said...

Few things are ever completely positive or completely negative experiences. It's all about how it ends up effecting you the most. And as you're a (mostly) positive person, of course you'll get the best out of the experience. ( think I'm mostly positive too, but there are some who would argue- none who know me well, though, so they don't really matter.)

Holly at Tropic of Mom said...

"crayons of reality." You're such a writer, Lou. ;) This is the first BlogHer conference where I've actually read some negative posts about the swag, people's behavior and such. I'm glad you think it was worthwhile.

Patsy said...

So that is that. And you are right about expectations.

I have enjoyed reading about some of the things that went on. I'm not sure a blogfest like that is for me --- too overwhelming. I would like to meet up with a about 5 people that I blog with 2 are close and 3 are far, far away. But some day, maybe, someday.....

Audrey at Barking Mad said...

Ya know, I've read so very many posts about this, more negative than positive it seems, that this was nice to read.

I've gone ahead and committed to going next year despite my very real fears and apprehensions- not only own fears and apprehensions about not being accepted and other social phobias I have...but just my fears of this being such a big thing on scale alone, that it's going to be hard for me to really connect with anyone else, or learn a lot of the things I'd like to.

Not that the above made any sense, it's just what's rattling around in my brain right now.

LceeL said...

Heather: I miss everyone too.

Nicole: It was - and now i miss them all.

Jientje: You will have a good time while you're here. I promise.

Shadow: I know now, I think.

Moneythoughts: It should be good.

Calicobebop: Thank you, ma'am.

Ashlie: You are one I am looking forward to seeing.

Nan: Yes- and I have been on both sides of the arguments, it seems.

Hyphen Mama: In that c ase, I'll have my own gathering in some farmer's field - just to get you there.

Employee: I think I will. Maybe.

Momisodes: I'll see you - for sure.

Huckdoll: Your choice, obviously - but it's the only way to put faces to names - and for me - I find that an important thing to be able to do.

Joyce-Anne: You better be where I can find you. I'm just sayin'.

FAPILV: And I hope to see you, too.

Eric S: Yes - there were some real standouts.

CaraBee: I hope I see you there - that's what counts for me. People.

Loraine: You are SO cool - and positive.

HollyATOM: All in all, it was worth it.

Patsy: You would be a star if you showed up.

Audrey: Just stick with me - I'll make sure there's nothing to be afraid of.

Kim said...

I will be there in NY for sure.. I was terribly sad I could not attend this year, although I was even sadder to hear of all the drama (all of which I did not see in 08)..

I won't have a ticket though. :)

Coal Miner's Granddaughter said...

I, too, have mixed feelings about BlogHer. I loved hanging out with Linda, seeing the bloggers I know, and connecting with new bloggers (YOU!), but I hated hearing about the swag hoarding, elbowing for swag, etc. That upset me. I am glad I went, but I'll probably wait for BlogHer Atlanta before the next one. :)