Note: If you’re not interested in the upcoming BlogHer conference, please skip today’s post and come back tomorrow. Sorry.
There is angst in the blogosphere surrounding the matter of private parties at BlogHer 2010. It’s not like me to write about blogger drama — but the pleading in the #blogher10 and #blogher tweetstreams is making me wonder if perhaps it’s time to stand up and speak my piece about this.
I’m not suggesting that anyone do anything drastic, but here’s how I planned my BlogHer trip last week.
1. Made a schedule. I took a look at all the sessions, the rooms of your own (ROYO), the birds of a feather meetups (there’s one for health bloggers! for moms of kids with special needs! for so many other things!) and the evening events and highlighted where I really wanted to be at any given moment.
2. I looked at the events I RSVP’d for in early April. Carefully. Was I overcommitted? Was I really going to attend two or more events in the same evening time slot? Would I really still be awake for CheeseburgHer at 10 p.m. Saturday night? Was I really going to be up for dancing Friday night after speaking at our Room of Your Own (ROYO), reading my post in front of thousands (eek!) at the Community Keynote, and raising a glass with friends at the BlogHer Voices of the Year Gala and Art Auction? Was I really ok with missing a session Saturday morning for a sponsored event?
3. I cancelled my RSVPs. Not all of them. But some of them. I decided that for me, it didn’t feel right to attend so many parties when so many new bloggers found out about the parties when they registered for the conference — after the parties were full — and were relegated to the waitlist. I did keep my RSVP to the People’s Party, fwiw, because I adore the organizers and the sentiment, and I’ve had a good time there the last two years.
4. I kept my schedule close by. When I was invited to private events that conflicted with my priorities, I said NO. No thank you, that is, and please invite another blogger instead.
They will. The parties and events will be packed. They always are. We’ll have a good time – and so will you, whether we’re at That Fancy Party, soaking up knowledge and laughing together in the sessions, or just sitting together in the lobby. We will. And I’ll try to remember that. I’ll try to remember exactly why I made these decisions, keeping my head, even if I get swept along with a group here or there, and not be envious of blogger X who got into event Y.
As I see it, BlogHer isn’t about exclusivity. It isn’t about who got invited where, or who’s wearing what, or how busy we can make ourselves, seeing everyone and being the life of the party.
BlogHer is about forming and reinforcing a community among women of varied backgrounds, with varied priorities, and with varied lives, and seeing the beauty in community.
BlogHer isn’t about “me.” It’s about “us.”
I can’t wait.