Goldilocks Goes to Podcamp


My Official Podcamp San Antonio 3.0 Badge

My Official Podcamp San Antonio 3.0 Badge

Dark clouds and rain descended on San Antonio this past Saturday, May 16th, but it was barely noticeable to those of us cozy and dry at Podcamp San Antonio 3.0 —held at the kitschy El Tropicano Hotel on the outskirts of downtown.

 What, you ask, is Podcamp?

 Podcamp is a loosely organized (Free!) daylong meeting to share and learn about social media. Although the Podcamp planners (To read about the founders click here: put in a lot of elbow grease into lassoing sponsors, badges (see mine in the photo above), t-shirts, tables, WiFi, microphones and more, the actual agenda isn’t decided until that morning.

 Campers straggle in. Those with expertise and bit of courage grab a marker and sign up for a speaking gig or to lead a break-out session. Everyone gathers in the main room and fires up their laptops, PDAs and cameras. Attendees range from pure novices  to the wired-to-the-max social media business gurus and academic experts.Podcamp Schedule

 To yield the true benefits of Podcamp, you have use the Goldilocks strategy: Try listening to something exciting and new, way beyond your skill level, like writing code. (Too big!) Attend a break out session on something simple, like how to sign up for Twitter. (Too small!) Participate in a discussion about how to livestream your event from your phone. (Just right!)

 In the process of finding the perfect bowl of social media porridge, you taste some samples (or “examples” as my 6-year calls them) that will keep you thinking about the future. Here are a few of the morsels I digested this year:

 1. Video live from your PDA or phone by using or courtesy of @CharlotteAnne who is a former professor of digital journalism at University of Nevada, Las Vegas and journalist.

2. To build a Facebook page for your company or organization, you have to scroll down to the bottom of the page and click on the “Advertisement” tab. @CharlotteAnne shows us this, and even longtime users had been struggling to find this button.

3. To manage your multiple social networking tools, is a great tool that @epodcaster (Jennifer Naverrete and Podcamp San Antonio co-founder) uses.

Jennifer Navarrete

Jennifer Navarrete

For me, the best part about Podcamp is that — like Goldilocks — you get to be a little naughty. Because of the social media nature, you are not only allowed — but *encouraged* — to be logged into Twitter or Facebook during the presentations. You can Tweet out informative tidbits from the speakers, interact with the other people in the room (just like passing digital notes in class, but on steroids) and you can access the Web to look up some of the tools presenters suggest.

 So, later in the afternoon, I just couldn’t be help myself. I was sitting directly behind classmate @colleenpence (a pro marketer and work-at-home-mom) and noticed that she has awesome hair. It’s brown with golden streaks and hangs down from her head in cascading, loose curls.

 Being a bit of a troublemaker, I almost reached out and touched it. But since I was at Podcamp, I took a photo of it with my BlackBerry Curve, and posted it on Twitter. 

Colleen's Hair

Colleen Pence's Goldy Locks

Turns out, almost everybody in the room also thought Colleen’s hair was da bomb. Suddenly Jennifer Navarrete, the Podcamp Organizer extraordinaire, chimed in. People all over town not even *at* Podcamp– – were commenting about the golden locks. And suddenly the puns started flying about the “mane” event. We invited people to “comb” on over; and accused others of giving us the “brush” off. Blogger @lettergirl even got into it: “I’ve been to @colleenpence hair camp. She’s a product dictator and demands to be called Mousselini.” And KSAT’s @bkearney even piped up from across the city with the hashtag #hairenvy. Oh the shear excitement.

It was locks of fun. Silly. Spontaneous. Creative. And that, in a nutshell, is the beauty of Podcamp. When we hit happy hour in the Tiki Lounge, the banter continued. I met:

 > @kr8tr (Rob La Gesse, the Racker responsible for luring big-time videoblogger Robert Scoble to the San Antonio hosting firm Rackspace);

 > @guidedmouse (the big cheese at http://www.guidedmousecom which helps people demystify technology and is one of the quickest punsters I’ve ever met.)

 > @discowhore (a dj that writes a blog about electronic music news) His name launched a whole conversation about inappropriate Twitter handles, pornography on the Web and, well, it got awkward after that.

 > @jbhughes (Bruce Hughes a small biz expert from the Small Business Development Corp. at UTSA who has a good karaoke voice and spent his birthday at Podcamp) During our hair-raising discussion, Bruce said that scientists suspect that Rapunzel’s hair would have weighed 60 lbs. I was going to tell him that Rapunzel was a f-hairy tale, but Bruce sports a lot of bling on his hand, so I didn’t want to *tangle* with the guy.

 @jackieadame (sister of @epodcaster who moved to San Antonio from Houston and does a regular podcast about coffee with her sister)

 @scvanderver (Stephen Vanderver, a technology enthusiast, who ironically, totes a retro composition notebook covered with random stickers around to write down people’s Twitter handles.)

 Sure, gaining knowledge about today’s technology is the point behind Podcamps. But meeting the smart, clever, witty, helpful people behind it all and expanding your human circle is the real moral of this story.

 The End.




~ by Donna J. Tuttle on May 18, 2009.

5 Responses to “Goldilocks Goes to Podcamp”

  1. Dang, I can’t believe I missed all the pun fun that ensued from the picture of @colleenpence’s goldy locks :/ But I’m really glad I was at Podcamp for as long as my day allowed. Thanks again to everyone who made it happen and to @epodcaster (A.K.A. Jennifer Navarrete!) for her amazing leadership!

  2. Donna: another reason to love Twitter – I found your blog. Really well done. I will definitely come back for more.

  3. Geez. If I’d known the back of my head was going to make the blog, I’d have gotten better highlights. Calling Hilda now for an appt…

    Awesome camp made better by your appearance!

  4. […] Donna Tuttle, esteemed SA Business Journal editor, covered the mane event. But that’s another story […]

  5. Donna, I completely agree: PodCamp is about expanding your human circle. Thanks for making the day even more worth while. Had a great time with all the ‘Campers’…. Looks like your photo really shaved the day… Or was a cut-above… or was literally the ‘highlight’ of the day. 😉

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