As August, our supposed month of BlogHer vacation (ha!), comes to a close I'd like to post just one nagging reminder.
We have gotten a tremendous response rate on our post-BlogHer attendee survey. No complaints. I just want to point out one little item to those who haven't sent it in (and at this point may have no intention of filling out a survey.)
The survey is where we asked whether you wanted to be on our BlogHer mail list to receive any information/updates/heads up about BlogHer's future activities, including Conference '06.
Never fear, though, you can subscribe to that email list even if you don't want to fill in the survey. Just click on the link in the top-left side bar to 'Subscribe to email news' and send email with a subscribe request, and you will also be added.
If you weren't in Santa Clara with us on July 30, I have good news: Now you can listen to the "naked ladies" yourself.
I'm happy to properly introduce two recordings of "How To Get Naked," the standing-room-only BlogHer session featuring Heather Armstrong, Ronni Bennett and Koan Bremner, and moderated by Jory Des Jardins. Their conversation was held in Santa Clara, California, July 30, 2005, and was recorded by both Koan and Susan Kitchens. Koan immediately uploaded her version. Then ITConversations took Susan's audio and glossied it up. Here are the links:
Koan Bremner: How to Get Naked, (10.9 MB, runtime: 47 minutes 42 seconds) That Koan managed to record anything while appearing in the hot seat as a panelist is pretty amazing!
Stay tuned, as Doug and the talented Team ITC turn out one new recording a week for the next half-year. (You may sign up for their feed of the latest Blogher audiocasts here.) Our goal in working with ITConversations is to emancipate the BlogHer conversation from a single linear day and spread the word. That's a specialty of Doug's -- see my post from July.
During the BlogHer Cocktail party I gathered a few really interesting questions and suggestions from folks. Some we're still working on. Some have been implemented, and one, as it turns out, already has a pretty simple solution.
Someone, and please forgive me I'm not positive who it was, said: "wouldn't it be great if we could annotate our Blog Rolls? Give people some idea of why that blog is on our blog roll?"
I loved the idea, not only because it would provide real value to our readers, but if we could start the trend we could probably get people to create and maintain blog rolls that have some meaning, rather than represent a stagnant pool of "important" blogs that we never actually read.
So, I'm sure you html coders are already three steps ahead of me, but I finally got around to asking my S.O. the software developer how he would solve the problem, and he said, "the right html attribute already exists."
If you add a: title="fill-in-explanation-here" attribute after the close quote on the URL and before the close caret, you'll have created a title that appears if someone holds their mouse over the URL in question.
OK, here's what your link code would look like:
<a href="Insert URL here" target="new" title="Insert description of why you like the blog here">Blog Name</a>
PS. I wish everyone would add target=new to their link code. It makes it open in a new window and that way I don't lose track of where I've been, cause I usually want to go back. BUt it's optional and has nothing to do with annotating your blog roll :)
I haven't had time to do this everywhere yet, but if you'd like to see an example, visit my Personal Blog and look at the first 3 URLs in my first Blog Roll (not the BlogHer Roll.)
Thanks Debi - I can clarify. First I would like to thank Liza Sabater, who did BlogHer a massive favor in the spring when she offered up her site, BlogSheroes, as a temporary wiki-like collaborative community for BlogHer. I approached Liza after watching her work in CivicSpace with brownbloggers.com and dailygotham. (This was no small sacrifice on Liza's part -- she didn't realize part of her job would be to walk me through code.) Thank you Liza.
Now that BlogHer '05 has come and gone, we're uncoupling the two sites. Because BlogHer still does not and never will have a political affiliation. In fact, every time I'm asked, I say specifically that BlogHer is not an agenda -- it's an opportunity for all women bloggers to grow our exposure, education and community. As such, it is not appropriate for BlogHer.org to affiliate with one part of the political spectrum. And as we've seen, before during and after July 30, women bloggers defy stereotypes, representing an excitingly diverse spectrum of opinions and beliefs.
At the same time, the-force-that-is-Liza has some fabulous plans for Blogsheroes, including the political and progressive ad network Debi mentions elsewhere in her post. (But I'm no spoiler! She'll have to tell everyone herself, perhaps when she's back from the conference in Canada she's attending this week.)
Baby steps: BlogHer Conference '06 and beyond
As we move forward, toward a 2006 conference and much more, the community is pushing BlogHer.org to evolve. Big time. Elisa, Jory and I are beginning work to plan BlogHer '06 and to plan for a new BlogHer community platform, one designed to equip BlogHers with the many capabilities we all say we want.
You are proving essential to this effort -- via your posts, individual mother-of-all-to-do-lists, completed surveys and comments on the BlogHer blog. We are reading you as fast as we can.
We also look forward to working with you -- if you have offered to volunteer or to help in any other, we have your offer in hand. We're just not quite ready to act on it. Please bear with us -- we'll be in touch in September.
Until then, the very best thing you can do to support BlogHer is:
- Take the BlogHer survey (and if you have already, thank you!) The survey link I emailed all attendees is where you confirm that you'd like to volunteer and/or receive the email updates we'll begin in the end of September. If you've lost track of the email and need me to resend it, please email me at lisa.l.stone-at-gmail.com.
- Join the Speaker's Wiki started by Mary Hodder. Are you aware that a cable news producer was at BlogHer on July 30 solely for the purpose of hunting amazing women bloggers? The world wants you, ladies, so get thee hence to Mary's fantastic list of speakers. Don't just rely on the BlogHerRoll, amazing though it is. Stand up and be counted.
Lastly, thank you now and in advance for your patience. The emails keep coming and we're doing our best to get our lives back on track so we can focus again on BlogHer.
Best, Lisa (or She Who Is Surrounded by Packing Boxes and Still Working on Her Mother of All To-Do Lists)
Perhaps you've seen some blog buzz around the exclusivity of the O'Reilly group's FooCamp? No? OK, well take my word: there's been buzz.
Well, some folks who clearly grok the concept of "Do-ocracy" are putting on BarCamp. Calling it "complementary" to FooCamp (and spelling complementary correctly...which makes my heart go pit-a-pat) these folks are inviting one and all to participate.
As BlogHer Rashmi Sinha puts it: "Like BlogHer, the spirit of the event is open, and it would be a great idea for lots of women to show up."
It's short notice, with the event starting tomorrow night at 7PM, but if you feel like camping out in BlogHer sponsor SocialText's offices in Palo Alto all weekend, geeking out...then we at BlogHer can only say: do it!
I am not kidding about the "camping out"; I am not kidding about "all weekend." I wish I was a real geek girl, not just a wanna-be! It sounds cool.
To close, here's my favorite quote the BarCamp site:
"What happens at Bar camp must be spread beyond Bar camp!"
After 2 weeks of absorbing BlogHer feedback I think I can safely say there was one piece of constructive feedback that rose above the rest: the WiFi sucked. Not that I've ever been to a blogging, or any other kind of, conference where the internet access situation was well in hand. And I think most of you would say the same. Why do I think so? Because the WiFi problem was mentioned with and almost readable long-suffering sigh, rather than a howl of shocked indignation.
Anyway, we figured out what the problem was, and if you ever expect to find yourself planning an event, you might want to read what the problem was...so you can avoid it...and you might also want to hear how in every other possible way the Network Meeting Center went out of their way to make BlogHer successful.
Some people talk. Other people listen. Happily, the professional listeners at Yi-Tan are so intrigued by what they've heard about MommyBlogging that they're devoting their weekly conference call this morning to a discussion with two mothers who joined BlogHer: Jenn Satterwhite of MommyNeedsCoffee and Mindy Roberts of the mommy blog.
"Jerry Michalski had such a great time during last week’s call with BlogHer’s organizers Lisa Stone, Elisa Camahort, and Jory Des Jardins along with Nancy White that he wanted to expand on some of the topics that were discussed, namely MommyBlogging. He invited me along with Mindy Roberts to join our BlogHer organizers to discuss MommyBlogging tomorrow, Monday, August 15th @10:30am PDT/ 1:30pm EDT. From the term itself to the impact MommyBloggers can have not only on the internet but in the community in general.
Join us! Come talk to us about MommyBlogging and your thoughts regarding this particular aspect of the blogging world. I look forward to joining this amazing group and hearing from all of you. (Or as we say here in Texas: y’all!)"
Here's how to tune in for *free*:
Date: Monday, August 15, 2005 Time: 10:30 PDT, 1:30 EDT Primary Dial-in Number: 1-800-615-2900 (Toll Free in USA and Canada) 1-661-705-2005 (for callers outside the USA and Canada) Participant Access Code: 778778
The Yi-Tan crowd records these calls. As soon as their audio is up, we'll link it here.
Remember Debi Jones' suggestion from the closing session that we make it our business to descend on conferences and make the BlogHer presence felt? Well, don't forget there are two conferences that are begging to be descended upon with their special BlogHer rates! See the extended body for more details on SXSW and BlogOn 2005 special BlogHer offers.
BTW: have you checked out the Speaker Wiki that Mary Hodder suggested in our closing session and subsequently created with SocialText's help? It's awesome, and now there's a page for people to post Speaking Opportunities. There are already several up there. Check it out!
If you weren't there I think you can tell some good ideas were tossed around in that closing session!