(Edited to add: We were bumped from the cabanas at the Marriott and will now be joining forces with Babble at the cabanas of the Hyatt, just next door. Please come find us at the 3rd floor, adults-only pool. We’ll be there Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 11am – 7pm.)
This will be my sixth BlogHer, and man how things have changed. I know it is so cliche to lament the “good ‘ol days,” but it’s hard to not feel just a little bit wistful when I think back to that first BlogHer.
In 2006, I had been blogging for less than a year. I had never met a blogger in real life. I was still living in Toledo, and social media was still Web 2.0. I attended a panel that conference about the validity of corporate blogging. That discussion actually generated debate (meaning some thought that corporate blogging wasn’t valid). I remember attending a breakout session (sitting on the grass near the pool) about video blogging. It seemed so technically advanced.
Mostly, though, what I remember about BlogHer 2006 are all of the amazing women I met. I’m still friends (and colleagues) with most of them. Because the conference was so small, it was easy to just sit by the pool and get to know each other. There wasn’t a giant expo hall. The sponsors were set up on tables in a tent, and they were only around during breaks.
In many ways, I am glad that the blogosphere has evolved. If the industry hadn’t grown as explosively as it has (which is what has caused/allowed BlogHer to become so big), I probably wouldn’t have started Sway Group. That said, it is hard to show up at a conference with over 3,000 attendees and not feel overwhelmed.
So, here is what we are doing. Sway Group has reserved a cabana poolside at the Marriott on Friday and Saturday. Please come say hi and relax for awhile. We’d love to get to know you and party like its 2006. Who’s in?