Why TweetCamp is not just another BarCamp
So, there’s been some interesting discussions, that I’ve been having with BarCampers, around TweetCamp. Some have been talking about how they already know all the people they follow on twitter, and don’t need to meet them in person, others that there isn’t necessarily a need to organise an entire BarCamp, and that we should have an even more informal, unstructured, get together in a park and just talk.
In response to those ideas and suggestions, and feedback, I just want to say thank you. It’s all very useful, and helps make clearer what TweetCamp isn’t and why it probably isn’t going to be the same as a BarCamp.
Just to clarify, for people that might be new to all this, “Camp” stuff – BarCamp has been defined as:
“an ad-hoc gathering born from the desire for people to share and learn in an open environment. It is an intense event with discussions, demos and interaction from participants who are the main actors of the event.”
which in essence is what we’re trying to accomplish. However, whilst the spirit of BarCamp is this open, self-organising nature of an event, the reality of the experience of BarCamps in London, has been that it primarily draws together people working with technology, or deeply interested in technology, and so you have a large proportion of geeks, hackers, hard core techies, and very few “regular” people, who aren’t interested in becoming one of those..
In contrast to the mainstream BarCamp community, TweetCamp is all about conversations, debates and discussions. And when I say that, I don’t mean like Social Media Camp, which focuses on discussions around Social Media, and the use of Social Media, and related technologies. No, I’m talking about sitting around and just having a good old fashioned barney, a natter, a chinwag. It’s about finding things that you have in common with people that you already know, loosely, through twitter, but perhaps never had the chance to spend a few hours hanging out with and chatting to, without getting drunk, and partying in the process. (Not that there’s anything wrong with that, we enjoy it as much as the next person 😉 We just want to be able to have time for more conversations in person, whilst we’re sober too 😉
TweetCamp is a bit of an experiment, in that we don’t believe anything like this has ever happened before. A point that was raised during the excellent Media140 event organised by Ande (known as @dailytwitter) was how tools like twitter really work best, when re-inforced with in person meetings with the people you’re talking virtually with. So seizing on the opportunity to bring approx 150 people together, who may or may not know each other through twitter, let’s see what happens when we bring together a group of people loosely connected by nothing more than the conversations they have in common.
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