The BlogHer Conference I attended last week didn't do much for me.
As a first-timer, I hoped to meet some new people and learn some new tricks -- and I didn't really accomplish either of those objectives.
With the exception of the company I kept, I walked away from the conference feeling like I had wasted my time. Here is why.
I attended the conference on Friday with my sweet six-month-old who was
a perfect angel throughout. However, he did demand to be fed, played
with and changed throughout the day and so those activities were my
priority. I admit that I didn't really bring my "A game" when it came
to focus -- but I did learn that I am not able to breastfeed, twitter,
network, and live blog all at the same time (this is good to know for
Despite all of my oohing and ahhing over my
baby, I did manage to attend two breakout sessions that I would
describe as . . . fine. No revelations. No particularly wise insights.
as I walked around the conference, I did overhear other bloggers saying
things like, "Wow, this and that session was so great. I learned so
much." So maybe I just made bad picks. And from what I heard, the
community keynote was amazing, but I had to skip out on that to get
home and relieve my babysitter.
Then there was the sponsors and the swag (my clever friend Alma
coined the phrase "SponsHer"). (Edited to add: Ack! I got my clever companions confused! "SponsHer" is actually the brainchild of Sara.)
I get that events like this are
sponsored. I understand that companies and money make the world go
round. But the sponsorship at BlogHer 2009 was so completely garish and
out-of-control that it ended up being a giant distraction to the
conference itself. I felt like I was at a trade show, rather than a
Although I found the focus on "stuff" to
be really off-putting, most of the other conference-goers didn't seem
to see it that way. Many of the blogging ladies were acting like they
were at some sort of freebie free-for-all. I have never seen such
unabashed excitement over free laundry detergent samples, tampons and
macaroni and cheese.
And to the lady outside of the Method Suite who was stuffing her bag with baby wash when she thought no one was looking -- I saw you. Classy, really classy.
it came to networking, I admit that I was just too shy/overwhelmed to
really get out there and meet people. I mostly hung with my fellow Chicago Moms and was glad to have a chance to reconnect.
During the welcome breakfast, it was announced that BlogHer 2010 is going to be in New York.
I won't be there.