Introduction to user generated events


I’m giving a presentation at work this week about the events 2.0 stuff I have written about on this blog in the past.  For the most part its a pretty high level introduction and doesn’t really go into much detail (its only a 10 minute slot) but I thought I would reproduce it here.  The presentation is split into 3 sections – (1) introduction to user generated events (2) innovative presentation styles and (3) introduction to the backchannel.  So anyway this is the 1st of 3 posts on the subject – and at some point I’ll embed the full presentation from Slideshare as well.



The heart of the unconference is the phrase ‘participant driven’.  If one of the key elements of the social web is the idea of user generated content and crowdsourcing then it is this element of the unconference that makes it special (and a little scary for organisers).


OST in many ways led the way for unconferences as we see them today – the technology reference is a bit of a red herring as its a process rather than a piece of tech but it introduced the concept of the participant driven agenda.


Foo Camp is hugely important in this movement – not least because it inadvertently created the BarCamp movement but also because it was the first event to create the now seemingly unbreakable bond between the unconference and the social web.


BarCamps are now well established as the event format of choice for the web community and beyond.  100s take place world wide every year, all abiding by the same founding principles.  The 1st BarCamp was only 4 years ago – at the SocialText offices in Palo Alto – and while this is sometimes disputed it is generally accepted that the movement was co-founded by Tara Hunt (also of Whuffie and coworking fame).  It was inspired as an alternative to the invite only Foo Camp; opening up the same opportunity for a delegate led conference to anyone who was interested.

ignite-prez007Barcamp spawned a whole series of imitators that have less well defined principles but often much more defined topics.  Wordcamps take place world wide and celebrate the use and development of blogging tool (one in Cardiff this summer).  Wordcamp – well certainly the UK version anyway – strays from the Barcamp model somewhat though as the agenda is set in advance via a wiki and in some ways retains more elements of a traditional event.

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