Saturday, August 05, 2006

Let's Blog And Then Think About Blogging Some More

Every once in awhile I find myself having very "meta" conversations - usually with D. or Sister - about blogging. The analytical side of me can't help but wonder what all this bloggy business means. How it's all going to play out down the road. If it's a fad or a phenomenon. If we'll all stick with it, or if one day we'll look at our computers and think, "Nah. I'm done."

Honestly, it's something I think about a good bit, because when I started this blog late last year, I knew that it would enable me to document what was going on with the little man as well as provide me with an outlet for exercising the write-y side of my brain (and I believe that is the official scientific term: "the write-y side"). But what I didn't know is that the discipline of writing every day (more or less) would change my life. And that I would, you know, make friends. And that people would read what I write. And stuff.

Anyway, last night I had an "anablog" (oh. punny. so very punny.) conversation with my sister, and we got on the subject of Blogher '06, the big blogger conclave that wrapped up last week. There were around 750 bloggers in attendance - mostly women - and apparently they had panel discussions and got all sorts of freebies and spent a good amount of time meeting and talking with other bloggers. It sounds like it was quite the blogtacular.

But I have to tell you. My initial reaction to something like that? Well, it makes me twitch a little bit. Not so much that you would notice - you might just think I was blinking at irregular intervals - but trust me. It's a twitch.

Now from what I've read, the women who were there had a wonderful time. And when I think about the big fun I had in Savannah with Addie, Lori, Robin and Theresa, I really do "get" why the Blogher convention is successful. It's nice to put a name with a face, you know? I mean, even though Sarah and I have emailed a bunch and talked on the phone, it would be great to actually see her in person, to do that Universal Girly Greeting where you squeal just a little bit and then completely wrap your arms around someone while simultaneously swaying back and forth. I would totally do that to Sarah if I saw her in person.

And then she would run from me, frightened.

But here's my fear about big bloggy gatherings - and keep in mind that I'm just thinking out loud, having had no experience at all with Blogher or any other super-organized gathering of Women Who Blog (unless you count supper at my house a couple of weeks ago, when Robin, Theresa and I had QUITE the "panel discussion" while eating chicken and wild rice casserole):

I wonder, once you got above 100 or so participants, if it wouldn't turn out to be a little like high school. You know what I mean? Like there would be some sort of unspoken hierarchy that would make people a smidge resentful. If it would be clique-ish. If there would be some perceived "popular" crowd.

Because I can't help but think that if I did in fact travel somewhere to "fellowship" with a huge group of bloggers, I would want the whole thing to be just a hair shy of a lovefest. Happiness all around. Sunshine and rainbows. No dissent amongst the masses. No drama.

This is one area where I'm a bit of an idealist, if you can't tell.

So here's what I want to know.

Let's pretend that there was going to be a gigantor gathering primarily made up of Christian bloggers (I know that not everyone who reads my blog is a Christian - but since I am, that's what we're going with for the hypothetical). If time and money were no object, would you want to go? Why?

And if you did go, what in the world would you be hoping to get out of it? Do you think there's value in rounding up 500 or 600 of your closest Christian bloggy buddies?

Because the optimist in me wants to to think that a gathering of hundreds of bloggers is a way for people to deepen relationships and enhance their mad bloggin' skillz (and I'm sure that, for many of the women who attended Blogher, it was all that and more)...but the more skeptical side of me thinks I might be a little disillusioned if I saw people being snarky. Or if that whole high school mentality prevailed. Or if it seemed like people were just trying to generate more traffic for their sites.

What do y'all think? Would you go?

And just to be clear: I'm not planning anything. :-) OH SWEET MERCY no. But it does seem like I'm reading more and more about people meeting in real life - in groups of 5, 10, 25, etc. So it seems almost inevitable that Women Bloggers for Jesus '08 - or something with a name that's, you know, clever - will happen. Somebody will organize something - sooner as opposed to later, I think.



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