THREE GOLD STARS to Suw Charman for her double-barrelled constructive critique of WeMedia held recently in London. She says, "For a conference about the media and how it relates to the public, WeMedia missed tricks left, right and centre." Some snippets tell it all:
"There were two entirely separate conferences happening - the one that went on onstage and amongst the big media attendees, and one that happened in the backchannel and in the coffee breaks amongst the more clueful attendees. And never the twain shall meet."
"The lack of understanding of blogs, bloggers and participatory media shown was astonishing, and the false dichotomy of journalists vs. bloggers was emphasised by the speakers throughout the day. It was very disappointing indeed, because I had hoped that we had moved beyond these sorts of non-issues and into the real substance of when, why and how you begin participatory media projects."
"The price tag for We Media was $795, which is far too expensive for most people to afford, and it put the conference firmly in the 'professional jolly' bracket (although it wasn't a very jolly jolly)."
"(P)ower problems and aggressiveness from the ushers and Media Center staff continued to rile me. By lunchtime I was ready to walk out. I felt very much like I was being seen as a 'whiny blogger' because I had fed back on problems with the chat, issues with power, and people's feeling that this conference was not giving enough of a voice to the people in the audience and online, some of whom were more expert than those on stage."
"The people in the media who need to be thinking about what just happened aren't. They believe that I am just a whining blogger. If they even read this, they'll say that I should get over myself, that I don't understand what their aims were and that I am hostile on principle. Worse than that, they believe that I'm anti-media. I'm not."
Suw Charman -- "Where's the we in WeMedia?"