Thursday, September 23, 2010

Are Blogger Meetups Still Relevant? (Fairfax County Bloggers Meetup Review)

Here's a quick post about last night's Fairfax County Blogger Meetup.

Since I started working over by Dulles (again) last year, I haven't been out to very many events, and not many DC Blogger Meetups, primarily because heading all the way into town is a pain.

I'd RSVP'ed for this month's Fairfax County Blogger Meetup; I was kind of obligated to at least show up, since they were looking for a place in Falls Church and I'd suggested Clare and Don's Beach Shack

I got there about 8:15pm (it started at 7pm), just as things were winding down, though folks did stick around a bit to chat -- the featured guest speaker was Jeff Sonderman of blog network/news site TBD, so we talked about the state of local news, blog networks, and the area. He also had TBD swag.

Additionally, attending were:

* Jill Anderson of the Lake Barcroft Blog -- she organized the event, though she's handing over group leadership duties to...

* Ellie Ashford of the Annandale VA Blog (and also a TBD blogger)

* Micheal Clark of

* Doug Francis, a Vienna Real Estate blogger

The nature of blogger meetups has changed, and to a large extent, waned. People generally don't need the same kind of support and encouragement to blog, since the tools and the norms have changed so much. Also, Facebook has largely taken over the social status broadcasting aspect of blogging, as have mobile updates and microblogging.

Still, the networking aspect still has a role, especially for single-issue/themed bloggers, so I think that blogger meetups can still be useful to people.

I very much liked the guest speaker aspect of this meetup, to provide a bit of focus and direction while still maintaining the social aspect (without a rigid agenda) -- hopefully, this continue (next month's scheduled Guest Speaker is Ellen Scott, Community Web Producer for WUSA9.)

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