cre824 webdesign festival

Posted 11 years ago by Evan Tishuk

On the 3.5 hour drive from Greenville to Chattanooga we listened to Gonzo Marketing which talks a lot about amateurism and dilettantes. Basically, it says that people who are not "professionals" or "experts" work for the joy of learning something new rather than honing what they already know. So far it seems as though the folks behind this conference are doing it for the first time. The only problem is that it doesn't appear they're doing it for the delight of the new experience. I find myself wishing a more experienced and energized team was holding this conference.

The printed brochures, audio/video/lighting and other material is top-notch, but I think cre824 needs a few more organizers and more event/workshop options. I guess I'll learn more about how a conference is executed when we participate in InnoVenture 2006 next March.

I'm definitely not a professional conference organizer or even a seasoned conference attendee, but I have a couple suggestions for the next go-round.

  • Hold the conference in Atlanta or Charlotte. Cheaper flights, closer to major population centers, more auxilary entertainment are all good things.
  • Charge more money. Presumably that should yeild a buffet of snacks and free coffee. I imagine that people paying more money would feel more compelled to make the most of the experience.
  • Hold workshops in smaller more intimate settings. I feel like I'm in a huge formal lecture hall being talked at. This runs contrary to what I like about the internet and I think the format does not fit with the conference's topic.
  • Give all presenters a little crash course speech training from someone like Deb Sofield. I'm not saying the speakers were poor, but I know Deb and I know she can give a few pointers that would really sand off some rough spots.
  • Have something to do between workshops. Perhaps something that pushes more interaction--especially in this audience of people who spend most of their time in a dark room talking to the voices in their heads.

Looks like the current workshop is about to conclude and my stomach is rumbling. Now I just need to find a place to eat. Man I wish there was a buffet here.

UPDATE:
Last several presenters were fantastic. Keynote, Joshua Davis, was awesome. At least makes it worth the trip. I still believe this whole conference could have been condensed into one quality day.

UPDATE:
We briefly met the organizers of the conference at Tubatomic (flash req.). They seemed really cool and even gave us some shirts and a poster. Unfortunately, the awards party coincided with the Clemson v. USC game and we had a very difficult decision to make. After watching the first half of the game, we made the decision to finish the game instead of going to the party.

5 Comments

tom sherman ~ 11 years ago

too bad i couldn't make it, but i hope you hit up at least one chattahoochee strip club

tom sherman ~ 11 years ago

actually, what is "chattahoochee" anyway?

Evan Tishuk ~ 11 years ago

It's a river. I think it's the one from the movie Deliverance. No, wait, that's the Cahulawassee. However, that movie was really filmed on the Chatooga which runs through South Carolina.

Joshua Blankenship ~ 11 years ago

Thanks for the kind words on the banners/print... that's been the last month of my life.

And thanks for the constructive criticism too. (Filed away for later use, I assure you.)

Evan Tishuk ~ 11 years ago

Joshua: I didn't want to come off as critical as this post sounds in retrospect. I was really impressed with the conference--it was undoubtedly a massive and ambitious undertaking. We hope to make it back next year and bring our partyhats now that we have a better feel for Chattanooga... and provided you don't take too much of my advice and leave the price reasonable

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