The first ever LIVE #journchat event has now been completed. It proved to be extremely interesting and left me with a lot of lessons learned about the future of organized events and discussions.
The idea behind these live events is compelling: Drive a conversation that integrates the face-to-face with the social web. It’s a tough feat to accomplish, and definitely one that will take a few times to get right.
The Philly event brought in some of Philly’s best and brightest, although the numbers were certainly much less than that of other locations like Chicago. Essentially, we were able to form one smaller group of highly insightful and active individuals, including journalists, bloggers, PR and social media professionals, that drove a lively discussion.
A few things that I learned…
- When online, if a question comes up that doesn’t apply to you, it’s easy to just do something else for 10 minutes until the next question comes up. During a live discussion, you’re only focus is the discussions, and so if you don’t relate, you can’t participate. It may be better to keep the questions very general.
- When a conversation online takes a life of it’s own, that’s okay, because everyone is looking at the same conversation. In the live event, every group is going to approach the discussion a little bit differently. This causes a disconnect between the online conversation and the offline.
- More collaboration is needed between the “Champions” and the Moderator (Sarah Evans) throughout the chat. It proved to be difficult to remain in contact and discuss issues, questions, or suggestions. I think that Sarah is better off letting someone else champion her location’s event and she should just focus on working with all the champions, and choosing questions.
- At our location, there were only a couple laptops. I think this is better. I tweeted out good points, comments, and questions that came up, and others used their phones if they had something specific to tweet. The interesting part here, is that for the most part, the live events won’t take part in the conversation online. They’ll watch the live feed (we had it on a projector screen) and take the conversation live. Is it possible to have a live discussion while also effectively taking part in the conversation online? I’m not sure it is.
Those are a few of the things I noticed. I agree that there needs to be more face-to-face discussions going on…and not panel based, speaker series discussions. I mean a mutual conversation, where everyone listens and everyone is listened to. (Philly Social Media Club does a great job with this)
Do you think it’s possible to have these kind of offline discussions closely integrated and kept consistent with online conversations?
Share your thoughts, whether you were at the event, or not.
You can check out the recap of the entire #journchat LIVE event at Sarah’s blog here.