Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Miracle or zombie?

So here I am at the SNCR Forum in beautiful Santa Rosa, California, surrounded by the best and brightest true believers in the social media universe. I'm inspired to the point of resurrecting this blog from the shallow grave it's called home for over a year now. Is it a miracle or a half-decayed hungry thing that eats brains for breakfast? Time will tell...stay tuned for more updates.

This conference has convinced me that it's time to get back in the pool. David Parmet, Joe Jaffe, Richard Binhammer, Paul Gillin, Geoff Livingtgon, Kami Huyse...names I know and respect are here and I'm soaking it up (hopefully more like a sponge than a sieve). On both a personal and professional front, conversation, true interactive discussion, is where I'm headed.

Did I mention yet how much I love conversation? What a lost art! People talk at each other but so few have any idea how to actually have a true give-and-take conversation anymore. I call them "versations"...there is no "with" component. One person says something. The other says something. Half the time they don't even relate, much less resemble a true response, and heaven forbid one participant actually forgoing their own agenda to ask a question or encourage the other. Instead of verbal ping pong, we play catch, holding onto our turn until we have to take a breath, at which point the person waiting her turn snatches the ball out of our hands and takes control.

Geoff Livingston and Kami Huyse talked today about steps to entering the social media ring that I think can become rules for conversation in any arena - Listen, participate, contribute, evaluate. If we applied these rules every time we talk with another person, our versations would become conversations again and we'd find ourselves actually hearing, stimulating, challenging each other.

Oh, but wait...we can't do that because that might lead to discussions about things that really matter, minefields in the politically correct, you will respect my diversi-ty world. But that's a topic for another post, another time. Right now, I'm going to go back to learning at the feet of the masters.

Don't go away...we'll be right back.

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