The True Meaning of BarCamp

Comments 4 by Rebecca Bollwitt

Over the last few weeks I’ve had several people ask me, “what exactly is BarCamp?”

Photo credit: Lloyd Budd on Flickr

Contrary to what the name might suggest we’re not all going to be learning how to mix drinks unlike the topics at the more literally named VinoCamp, TransitCamp, or MobileCamp.

BarCamp is an ad-hoc un-conference born from the desire for people to share and learn in an open environment. It is an intense event with discussions, demos and interaction from attendees.

Anyone with something to contribute or with the desire to learn is welcome and invited to join. [BarCamp wiki]

Anyone can attend, participate, speak, listen, blog, photo etc. Sure, there’s an opening night party on September 26th that may perhaps… most certainly… involve spirited beverages but the main focus will be the sessions the following morning.

So far topics suggested for 2008 include: PhotoCamp, MiniMobileCamp, WordCamp (WordPress focus) Marketers for a Cause, Semantic Web and Microformats, and How to be a Digital Vagabond or “Hobo 2.0” – just to name a few.

Photo credit: cosmo spacely on Flickr

You can read my live blogs from 2006 and 2007 to get an idea of the sessions and activities that have taken place.


For more information check out the wiki page where there is a link to the registration page. As always, BarCamp is free of charge although it’s already full so feel free to add your name to the wait list.

On a related note, BarCampBankBC is the week before and will have a focus “… to foster innovations and the creation of new business models in the world of banking and finance.” More info is on the wiki or Facebook event.

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4 Comments  —  Comments Are Closed

  1. gillianMonday, August 25th, 2008 — 8:33am PDT

    I’m surprised you wrote about the meaning of BarCamp without mentioning how it was a response to FooCamp, which was invite-only.

  2. Miss604Monday, August 25th, 2008 — 8:35am PDT

    Yes I didn’t get down into its roots, moreso just a simple explanation and presentation of BarCamp Vancouver.

  3. DarrenMonday, August 25th, 2008 — 11:24am PDT

    Excellent write-up, as always. I have two random notes:

    * There are only two sponsor slots left now, so if there are any keeners out there, it’s now or never.

    * We’ve already renamed our talk (ah, brand dilution!) to ‘How To Be a Laptop Bedouin’. It’s a long story.

  4. Notes on BarCamp 2008: Sponsors and Hockey PoolMonday, August 25th, 2008 — 1:20pm PDT

    […] by Rebecca’s post, I wanted to post two quick notes about the forthcoming BarCamp […]

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