Here’s a thing I need people’s help with. If you like this idea, blog it use it, spread it around. It’s a network effect driven thing that can be great if lots of people use it, not so great otherwise.

One of my biggest stresses about going to Portable Media Expo a few weeks ago (and about going to Converge South this weekend) is that I know I will run across many people I have met before, and I may not remember their names, match their names to faces or remember who they are. I was thinking not long ago that it would be cool to have a photo directory, yearbook style, of all these conferences and then I realized that with Flickr, we kind of do have a de facto one.

Here’s my proposal.

  1. For any conference, define a tag such as “YouMetMeAtPodcastExpo2006” or “YouMetMeAtConvergeSouth2005” or “YouMetMeAtDragonCon1999” . Use the common name of the event with the year.
  2. Find one clear picture of you from that event on Flickr with your face evident. The goal here is identification, so this is no time for comedy. Ideally it is just you alone in the photo, but if you can’t do that, a multi-person picture will suffice.
  3. Tag it with the tag for that conference. Tag only one photo of you. If someone else tagged themselves in a photo you are in, so be it, but don’t tag more than one photo for yourself. Don’t tag for anyone else unless they ask you too, otherwise this can get messy and redundant fast.
  4. If your name is not already in the photo description (the photographer might not know you) then add your information as a comment to the photo and email the account holder and ask them to add in your information to the description. Obviously, all of this is way easier if this is a photo from your own account. This also implies that it might be a good idea to make sure you walk out of any conference with at least one decent solo full face shot of yourself.
  5. As more people do this, doing a view on that tag gives you a usable directory of names and photos for any given event.

I don’t often make posts that I explicitly try to spread as memes, but this is one. Of course, if I’m the only person that finds this a good idea then it will splat on the ground and never go anywhere. If lots of people do it, though, then maybe next year we can refresh our memories before returning to events and make the mingling and networking that much easier and more productive and stress-free. Ladies and gentlemen, start your folksonomies!

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Dave Slusher is a blogger, podcaster, computer programmer, author, science fiction fan and father. Member of the Podcast Hall of Fame class of 2022.

4 thoughts on “YouMetMeAt”

  1. mike dunn says:

    ahhh a great idea dave – i’m terrible at remembering names, normally ok w/ faces yet not always sure how i know or when i met someone (very absent minded professor-ish)…

    using flickr to augment social memory – very nice…

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