A quicky-quick post about the Mumbai BlogCamp. Firstly, how many of your read about it here and decided to show up? And if so, why didn’t you come talk to me??!!!
Sakshi and I pulled into IIT, Powai around 11, with a late but not dramatic entry since we walked smack-dab into the crowd dispersing for a break after the introduction. The lovely Meetu and my Twisted friend from Pune had made it on time, much to my mortification.
I sat through Rashmi Bansal‘s talk about her blogging experiences. Some people just have a talent for communication! She didn’t say anything I didn’t already know but the audience was spell-bound. It was a nice round-up of what blogging is and what it means to the blogger.
This was followed by some discussions on security and tips to be a good blogger. I didn’t come away much impressed with either though I get the feeling the first talk might have been considerably improved had the speaker been given a chance to speak. Ah well, being an unconference speaker might mean you have to be much more aggressive to get your point across.
Aditya Mhatre gave a talk on podcasting which I thought came through very well. The audience seemed to think so too and I hope Indicast gets all the new voices that Aditya asks for!
I was rather overwhelmed by the ‘commercial’ direction that a lot of the talks were running along. Blogging has been a deeply personal experience for me, one of free expression, of venting, of relating and of sharing. I like money as much as the next person and would have no qualms about getting some extra (I do run ads on this blog after all). However I think if I start thinking numbers..stats, feeds, visitor count, search optimization etc, I’ll lose the essence of this blog. But that’s just me.
Lunch was a friendly affair, on the steps with people milling around and drifting in and out of conversations. It took me back to the college days, right from the back-bench-sniggering and the timetables. Skipping a few talks to sit on the steps with some co-vella-ites felt like cutting class. Not forgetting the inevitable eyeing of the opposite sex and sitting through one talk simply because said person was in the same room (Nope, ask no questions and thou shalt hear no lies! 😉 )
I really enjoyed the Twitter talk that was started by Aalaap and taken over by the booming-voiced Hephail. Some of the other tweeple chipped in, from behind them or from the audience. And true to essence of micro-blogging, this was one of the shortest talks (20 minutes at my estimate). It was good to put a voice and face to each of the people I’ve been talking to these past few weeks on Twitter. My enthusiastic exclamations of “You’re so-and-so? I follow you!!!” prompted aalaap to smirk,
That’s your favorite pick-up line, is it?
Meeting other bloggers has always been an interesting experience and this was the biggest congregation of bloggers that I’ve ever been to. I’ve lost count of all the people I spoke to but I was particularly happy to meet Ranjan and Moksh.
You can read some of the other accounts of the barcamp by:
Ankit Arora: Top Indian Bloggers gather at the BarCamp
Tarun Chandel: Power of blogging
Brajeshwar has the photographs online.
Watch this space too; it’ll probably get updated by one of the contributors soon.
And finally, here‘s what the media thought. (See you can spot yours truly!)