No Podcastercon After All

I’ve been thinking about this long and hard, and I’ve decided to not go to Podcastercon in Chapel Hill. It sucks because I’d like to but it just wouldn’t be prudent. I have a ton of work to do and have lost a lot of my discretionary time for personal projects over the last month. Three of the last four weekends have been pretty unproductive due to holidays, and I just can’t afford the hit. I wasn’t planning on staying the night, so if I stayed for dinners and the like it would have been a 18 hour day with a 6-7 hour round trip drive included in there.

On top of all that, another big part of this is unfortunate timing. Having been to (or near) three different sit-around-and-talk conferences since September (Duke, Converge South and PME) I feel like I’m talked out. Add to that the fact that I want to have the first organized hands-on Uplifter meeting in Conway in February, it just all reduces my urgency to go this weekend. I went to remove my name from the attendee wiki, and found the page locked so I can’t. Just so y’all know, I won’t be there.

I should point out that I am not at all troubled by the thing that made Dave Winer pull out. Sorry Dave, I know you think we don’t disagree on these sort of things but I do. It just doesn’t bother me if there is a box of free books sitting there, regardless of the promotional value. In fact, as the technical editor of a book competitive to the one being passed out, I probably have more direct reason to feel umbrage and I feel none. My problem is almost the opposite. I’m not wild about the “no vendors talking” rule. If I’m driving all the way up there and losing one of my personal working days, not being able to talk about AmigoFish really sucks. If I can’t work on it, then I want to have the option to talk about it. The idea that someone else could bring it up but I’d have to sit by silently — despite being the person who both uses it most and knows most about — is absurd.

When I was thinking about the Myrtle Beach blog shindig, I was not going to have the “no vendor” rule, replacing that with gladiator-arena style thumb voting if you felt pitched to and uncomfortable. That would give the session leader a good read on the zeitgeist of the room and allow them to cut someone off if they were violating the spirit of the proceedings. There are times it is appropriate hear from a vendor and so blanket condemnation of vendors speaking on their own stuff doesn’t serve my needs. Sure that privilege can be abused but I feel like I’m losing more from the silence than the risk of the pitch, particularly if everyone in the room has a mechanism to communicate when they’ve had enough.

So in summation, the combination of too much work; prohibition from talking about the stuff I am most excited about; timing; and conference burnout has led me to not go to Podcaster Con this Saturday.

6 Replies to “No Podcastercon After All”

  1. You pulling out( in a ddition to (Dave Winer) helps me feel even better about not attending (I know I’m being selfish). I feel the points you made are logical.

    Pretty exciting that the local Uplifter program is getting close to starting. I hope you’ll have someone do some video recording of sessions.

    Maybe time to turn up exposure level on your “pet Fish” since you’re putting in so much time on it.

  2. “Sorry Dave, I know you think we don’t disagree on these sort of things but I do”

    Where did I say we don’t disagree on these sort of things?

    If you think you can read minds, maybe you can, but sorry Dave, you aren’t correctly reading mine.

    I don’t think you even correctly evaluated why I’m not going, but I think I said it very clearly.

    Being non-commercial isn’t something you can be casual about. You may want to go to a commercial conference, but I don’t. I’ve been to plenty of them, and I don’t have a product to sell, and I was only going to this conference to support Brian anyway, and geez, you live in South Carolina and it’s a short drive for you, and for me it’s a cross-country trip.

    So cut the baloney about how I’m a dickhead who can’t read your mind, and explain your own reasons without making me out to be a flawed human being (which I am, not that you have any insight into that) and besides, you’re one of those too. ;->

  3. Dave, you said it on October 11th after our breakfast in Greensboro. That phrase is a link to you saying it, for pete’s sake.

    I didn’t say or even believe any of the ad hominem stuff you are imputing to me. I just have a different outlook than you do on the commerciality of conferences. C’est la vie.

  4. Well, I’m afraid you reached a little too far into that innocent statement. I retract it.

    I understand that you have a product to promote and would like a chance to do that.

    Hope you feel understood now! ;->

    Have a nice day.

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