Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Bloggers Arrive

Interesting that the 2011 Blog World Expo in New York is co-sharing the convention center with the Book Expo America at the Jacob Javits Convention Center. Interestingly ironic and somewhat contradicting as digital media is increasingly competing with traditional print.

As I was making small talk with the lucky fella (or unlucky considering we both flew out of South Bend, Indiana and survived three cancelled flights and one half day late of a successful work day in New York) sitting next to me on the plane, I was telling him about this conference I was on my way to. He admitted that he was clueless about social media. iPod owner was the highest level he could mark on his digital development growth chart, in fact.

He shared that he was talking to his daughters, both tweens, about how the Gutenberg press changed the face of history. They laughed and told him the printing press is nothin' compared to the internet.

Digital bloggers + Book authors. United or divided?
A new twitter friend, @coffeewithjulie also known as Julie Harrison was tweeting about her *heavenly* experience at the Book Expo. When I asked her if she agreed that the digital and print realms were  A contradiction, she tweeted, "that the biggest names in social media are those with best selling books."
Many bloggers yearn to be in print to prove that they have arrived. Someday we hope that won't be necessary. The brand equity found through social media channels is more valuable than anything found on pulp, in my opinion that is. Both the digital and printed medias have a purpose in our lives.

As keynote speaker of the opening night of the expo and author of The Mirror Test, Jeffrey Hayzlett boldly phrased it, "I want a book online and in print so I can read it in the air, on the toilet, wherever the hell I want to."

It is fascinating to engage in this topic at a conference as these two worlds of storytelling and journalism collide, compete, coexist and continue to impact our communication and cultures.

Digital media has certainly impacted me. It has opened doors to opportunities that I would have never had with a telephone, pen and paper. Through twitter, I have met some dynamic individuals who educate me and inspire me. Heck, the last two gigs I've been fortunate to secure have come from twitter, including this assignment that I'm on as I report for Social Fresh on Blog World.  I've been able to have my voice heard and have made real connections from small rural Indiana.

And, here I am. At New York attending the Blog Expo. After three cancelled flights, as I walked into the Javits Convention Center to the VIP registration to pick up my press pass, I think to myself *I have arrived.* (finally.)

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