Two "Must See" Presentations From Web 2.0 Expo

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This past week was the Web 2.0 Expo in New York City. It was a great event.

I was fortunate enough to have attended on both Wednesday and Thursday (I presented some new content at the unconference part of the show, Web2Open – organized by the PodCamp folks). For those who didn’t make it to the event, the good people at O’Reilly (who produce the show) were kind enough to post some of the presentations online.

Here are two presentations that were fantastic and well-worth your time to watch…

1. Baratunde Thurston discusses the power of the hashtag in Twitter and in telling stories: Web 2.0 Expo NY 09: Baratunde Thurston, "There’s a #Hashtag for That":

2. Chris Brogan discusses something he calls, The Serendipity Engine: Web 2.0 Expo NY 09: Chris Brogan, "The Serendipity Engine":


  1. I get excited when I listen to talks like these. Then I remember that I live in Montreal, Canada, i.e. the little engine that wishes it could. Because French is the first official language in Montreal, any new technology/media/social network takes a very long time to catch on here. We are lightyears behind anything that is being talked about on this blog, yet we are 5 hours away from New York City!!
    I visit this page religiously. I always get enthusiastic about the sheer volume of knowledge available to the public. I want to share my experience and ideas with everybody I know in my own community (Montreal, Quebec), I want to apply it at work, at school, with my family – I think about the endless possibilities! But then I look around and realize my community (Province of Quebec) is stuck behind this language barrier in addition to a hostile behaviour towards anything ‘ENGLISH’.
    Am I the only one here who feels a bit discouraged by the slow pace at which social networks are catching on in their community because of language barriers?
    I studied translation and am now doing a graduate diploma in Public relations. It seems as though the new ‘IT’ thing on the web is always in English. Because translation is very time consuming AND expensive, many of these IT things simply never get translated and miss millions of people who don’t speak the language.
    How would one even begin to try and explain the concept of ‘hashtagging’ in French? Creating words in French is not as easy as it is in English. I love Baratunde’s concept, but how could I even begin to explain it to a french speaker. By the time I try to explain, hashtagging will be over and there will already be something fresher out there.
    I am a French speaker myself and this is my first comment ever… Would love to have some feedback

  2. I also live in Montreal and find most of the events here amazing because they are in both French and English (have you ever been the events held by InfoPresse, IAB Canada, Third Tuesday, BarCamp, PodCamp, YULBiz, YULBlog, etc…?). They are all amazing.
    On top of that, both Facebook and Twitter are now available in French.
    Now, all of that is fine and cool, but language is always a barrier to growth and expansion. So, we have to keep at it (like we did before there was an Internet), and continue with both education, awareness and discussion/conversation.

  3. Your words are encouraging! Montreal does have amazing bilingual events and social networks are indeed being translated. Unfortunately we are limited to the content created in the language we speak.
    As I read my previous post, I realize I have the wrong attitude. I shouldn’t just wait impatiently for social networks to become viral in Quebec, I should be part of the crowd that spreads the word in my own language, French ๐Ÿ™‚ Increased awareness in French can inspire folks to start generating French content and contribute to the expansion and richness of the French content on the web.
    Arg, this is so fascinating!!! I definitely need to learn more and get involved.

  4. Couldn’t agree more with your choices. The conference was terrific, sorry I missed your presentation at Web 20pen. We had a lot of staffers at Web 20pen, since Blue Fountain Media was the poster child for “The Power of Less.”

  5. Hi Vanessa, I live just down the road in Ottawa and I work in both French and English. I like the approach of why wait? Why indeed. Step up, make it happen, broaden your circle, lead and people will follow.

  6. I have watched both the presentations and it is needless to say that they are just fabulous. Hey, Vanessa well-done. Congratulations!!

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