Rather than post a typical event listing for BarCamp Vancouver I thought I would share my personal experience with this event. It has meant a great deal to me, as well as the Vancouver tech and social media community over the years.
Many people have asked me how I got into blogging — how did I go from writing about what I had for breakfast to taking this site full-time and writing professionally? I then often pinpoint the exact moment in time that I decided to take Miss604.com seriously. It was August 26th, 2006, the opening day of the first BarCamp Vancouver at WorkSpace in Gastown.
The night before I was invited to do my very first live blog in the living room of local singer/songwriter Matthew Good. John and I went to Gastown first to pick up our lanyards from BarCamp then we missed the opening night party so that I could cover this private concert. The next morning I took my new live blogging skills to BarCamp and sat in on some amazing sessions. There I met people like Kris Krug, Boris Mann, Ryan Cousineau, David Drucker, Arieanna & Ianiv Schweber, James Sherrett, Megan Cole, and Roland Tanglao.
The format of BarCamp (or any actual unconference) is to show up, present a topic you’d like to speak about then the schedule for the day is made on the spot using all of these submitted ideas and discussions. I listened, I learned, I typed. There wasn’t even a term for “social media” at the time, all I knew is that this is the space I wanted to be in. I wanted to collaborate, write, and share this information with others.
Being 26 and newly married I didn’t have a lot of money but what I did have was an online outlet. I live blogged BarCamp, DemoCamp, and even SuperHappyDevCamp so I could give back to the community in some way. I have worked in online media for the last 10 years and have been working with online media since 1997. The people, the discussions, and the creative atmosphere at BarCamp Vancouver was a game-changer for me.
Back for its 5th year this fall, BarCamp Vancouver is mixing things up by running for 23 straight hours at the newly renovated and remodeled Waldorf Hotel.
Registration is still open and $20 gets you entry to the kick-off party on Friday November 19th, access to a block of workrooms at the Waldorf Hotel, entry to the unconference on Saturday, November 20th, a t-shirt, and free beer.
They are still looking for sponsors so if your company would like to support this community and get some fantastic exposure, inquire here. BarCamp along with Northern Voice are the two “must attend” events in Vancouver each year that I fully endorse so be sure to get your tickets now.