Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Third Annual Blogger's Conference

Above, from l to r, Joanna, Terese and Debi, the co-chairs for this year's event. Despite what some people were led to believe, they are NOT the founders of this event. That dubious distinction belongs to me as I conceived of and held the first meeting here on Isla Mujeres.

These events just keep getting better. Thanks in no small part to the hard work of the three ladies pictured above. They did a fine job of mixing formal with informal, educational with just plain fun. The venues for the event were magnificently fitting for the function scheduled. I will do a separate post tomorrow on the venue for the conference presenters.

My only exception to the above statement was the choice of lunch and breakfast. Bear in mind that this is only MY opinion, which I am entitled to express here. I would rather have gone to a more Mexican oriented restaurant for lunch, perhaps something like last year which was a botanas bar. This year's choice was far too Gringo based and the way the "banquet" table was set up left some of us feeling like we had been delegated to the children's table and thus cut off from the main group.

Breakfast was just plain horrible. We were all able to get around and along one table, but the food on the buffet was miserable, to say the least. Cluttered, unorganized warming trays which were slow to be refilled. Only about eight different things to choose from and the only choice for eggs were at the "cooked to order" grill. This led to a tremendous backup resulting in what food you were able to find to put on your plate getting cold. For the money, not a good deal.

Friday night's feature was the Meet And Greet. This year in was held at the Merida English language library. A great venue for such an event. Great use was made of the garden space which is attached to but behind the main library. Many old friends were hugged and even some new ones got hugs by the end of the night!

The spreak of snacks was diverse and tasty. Some people had gone to great lengths to bring homemade dishes. Not just your standard guacamole and chips type affair!

One of my new friends...Nancy from Barry and Nancy's Blog. I love the mural behind her. I was told that if you make a donation to the library, you can choose the title of any book to have put on the spine. Or your name, blog name, whatever. Cute fund raising idea.

A bartender had been hired for the occassion. All drinks were sold via purchasing a drink ticket upon arrival. I think they may have made a bit more money had the ticket seller been closer to the bar. Even so, I saw plenty of people with a drink in their hand!

My friend Lin, getting her first Coca-Cola of the evening.

Lots of mingling, lots of introductions, lots of stories. A great evening of getting to know new people and catching up with old friends.

Saturday's presentations and group discussions were held at the Techologica Turista Total school. This place is owned by one of the co-chairs, Joanna. A beautiful place but we'll get into that later.

Starting us off was Theresa with the topic Blog Focus. She had all of the participant's briefly describe their blog, what it was about and whether they thought it was a general interest blog or a specific interest blog. Some interesting stuff and more blogs to read now!

The second presentation raised a lot of interest and questions. It was Steve's discussion of Copyright Law and Internet Ethics. The basic rule he left us with was the same one we learned in Kindergarten: if it ain't yours, don't take it. Of course there was a lot more to it than that, but that was the basic idea.

The picture I took of our next presenter turned out blurry so I won't post it. It seems kind of ironic since it was Marc Olsen teaching us about photography and how to place it on your blog!

Some of the participants setting up laptops and getting ready to listen to three very good presentations that morning.

There was an afternoon session which I did not attend. It was how to use Blogger and WordPress for publishing your blog. It's not that I think that I am an expert on the subject, but I had other, non-blogging friends living in Merida that I wanted to visit.


Theresa in Mèrida said...

Wayne I will always be grateful to you for being the founding father of the blogger conference! I apologize if I in anyway contributed to that blatant falsehood which gives that distinction to anyone else!!!

LOL, I was not impressed with breakfast either! Husband and I won't be going back.

Las Vigas for lunch was chosen because we knew that they could be counted on to serve in a timely manner.
I think meals for a group are always problematic. I like an event like the meet and greet so much more. You get a nibble and then can move around to chat.

lisa said...

Sounds like a nice conference! I am defiantly no expert but that is just fine, I do pretty good for me!

Barb said...

Great summary of the conference, Wayne. It was a pleasure to meet you. :-)

Nancy said...

Sounds like a fun and informative time, we are sorry that we missed it. Thanks for making me feel like I was there!