WordCamp – attend a WordPress mini-conference – #geek

With 17% of the web using WordPress it’s no wonder there is a WordCamp every week. More than that with 75 scheduled for this year. These ‘unconferences’ are informal gatherings of like-minded people from bloggers to developers to creatives. The content is based on those attending and has a heavy bias towards the local community.

From WordCamp Central:

WordCamps come in all different flavors, based on the local communities that produce them, but in general, WordCamps include sessions on how to use WordPress more effectively, beginning plugin and theme development, advanced techniques, security, etc.

 

Definitely worth attending for the networking and geekery alone. To find one close to you here is a list of WordCamps. I found mine and it is in Los Angeles on September 15, 2012.

I’m excited to attend, get my geek on, and learn a ton about WordPress. Hope to see you there!

 

Continue reading WordCamp – attend a WordPress mini-conference – #geek

Since the recession began in 2006 – blogging has exploded, growing 500%

Do you ever wonder how many millions of people, before the days of the internet, kept journals?

Do you think the numbers would compare to the millions who are now blogging, tweeting, and social networking…

On to the real story:

Millions More Bloggers and Blog Readers

Here is another interesting fact about the recession. Since it began in 2006, the number of blogs in the world has risen from 36 million to 173 million. That is a near 5x growth.

Do you think that has any relation the recession or is just a correlation?

That same data shows that 2x as many people blog on social networks as compared to traditional blog websites. So perhaps the rapid growth is due to the rise of social networks?

Ah, well the data shows that the majority of bloggers are women, half of whom are moms. Another 20% of bloggers are fathers. Something about parenting drives a person to blog…

More stats at neilsenwire

BlogHer, Not My Thing

I wanted to like BlogHer. I did. A conference about blogging for women. I’m a woman. I’m a blogger.  Perfect.

But as a first-time conference goer, I found myself unable to tap into the enthusiasm many attendees seemed to genuinely possess.

Maybe it was the fact that in almost every session I attended, someone in the audience asked what SEO is (I’m not saying this is bad, it just illustrates there were a lot of newcomers to the web and blogging in attendance). Or maybe it was every woman I met (who were all friendly and welcoming) happened to be a “mommy blogger.” Or it could have been the Expo Hall felt way too much like a 1950s cliché, dominated by packaged/prepared food, cleaning supplies and kitchenware vendors. Or it could have just been that unlike many of the women who were repeat attendees reuniting with friends, I was out of my geographic comfort zone without a posse to hold court with. Whatever the case, I didn’t fall in love the experience.

In BlogHer’s defense, I don’t typically go gaga for conferences (with the exception of my maiden voyage to SXSW), for the same reason I don’t like smorgasbords: a lot of broad, general content, without a lot of nuance and quality. While the speakers I heard from were knowledgeable, it felt like too often, they catered to the lowest common denominator. Not really the speaker’s fault, more a consequence of the format, but less than satisfying for me nonetheless. Perhaps if there were beginner, intermediate and advanced tracks, this would have been less of a problem. And perhaps if I had gone to any of the parties (I heard the parties are a big part of BlogHer’s appeal), I would have gotten more out of the networking aspect. But I didn’t. And I also didn’t go nuts for the swag. I heard a lot of women talking and tweeting about the swag. I’m not really a swag kind of gal.

Finally, I’d be remiss if I failed to mention one obvious aspect of the conference…men (or lack thereof). I missed them (although there were a few in attendance). As someone whose been one of a handful of woman at similar-sized conferences comprised of mostly men, it feels unnatural to me to have just one gender talking about issues and content that are not gender specific. My motivation for going was to increase my knowledge of blogging. The fact that I’m a woman was secondary.

So while I understand the value of BlogHer, whose mission since 2005 has been “to create opportunities for women who blog to gain exposure, education, community and economic empowerment,” I’m more interested in focusing on the blog over the her.

To each her own.