thoughts on >play
Had a grand time at >play today, over at Berkeley’s Haas Business School.
My panel, Transforming Old to New Media, was a hell of a lot of fun for something that started before noon on a Saturday. Paul Cloutier is REALLY nice and has great ideas about pretty much everything. With him, he had the latest issue of JPG Magazine, the beautiful evidence of his collaboration with Heather and Derek and the outrageously talented community that makes up Flickr. Get yourself a subscription!
Despite sparring with both of them about intellectual property and the future of media, I did truly enjoy meeting David Ring and Ahmad Ouri. David in particular was able to speak passionately about the personal cost of the tumult that has effected the music industry over the last decade. While I left not particularly agreeing with his views, I felt I’d gained some insight.
I stuck around through lunch for the User Generated Content panel. Ev and Micki were both on it, along with my Sphere co-conspirator Mary Hodder. Everyone did their best to keep up with moderator Mike Arrington, who kept the conversation crackling and changed tracks often enough to keep everyone off guard. Not a whole lot was said about what’s so special about “UGC” (the panelists and I all agree that there is something terribly ugly about that word and how it is used), but the focus of the talk wandered from that to the death of the New York Times and the power of Digg. All standard Arrington tropes, but it was neat to see him work the panel and the crowd – more than anything, that guy looks like he’s having a hell of a lot of fun.
[Note to Mike: you’d find plenty of decent corner bakeries if you’d just leave the Valley more often. I promise. Try Tartine.]
[update: There were a couple funny moments during the panel, and one of them has apparently gotten written up over at Valleywag.]
Congrats to Andy Kiang and Andy Taylor and all the rest of the students who put a ton of hard work into making >play happen this year. I was flattered to be invited to contribute, and enjoyed the entire day.