Tuesday, 24 March 2009

London Blogger Rights

The one in which he talks about the Spring London Bloggers meetup in reverse order

I'd walked into a fence, drunk on the way to the station, I could almost feel blood trickling down my cheek from the wire. Aw well, I thought.

On the train, sat two seats to my left was a young lady knitting, it seemed to be a white scarf. English wasn't her first language, but I think we bonded over knitting as I pulled out my latest project.

Knitting project #8 - The checkered scarf

Its a bit of a checked, weaved kind of thing. I was a little drunk on the train, so I think I mushed it up. As I said before, aw weel.

Earlier I was at the London Bloggers Meetup at Doggetts Coat and Badge in Blackfriars, towards the end of the evening I was sat at a table with my chum and recent boing-boing star Aref-Adib, Caroline of Caroline's Miscellany, Michald, and Alex4d who can be found by searching for his name. Interesting conversations about the nature of Twitter and the future and the internet and whether documents will exist in a hundred years and many many other things.

Do I actually have to apologise at these things if I roll my eyes when people say they do PR and Marketing. I accept that people who blog have the same skillset as people who do PR so there's huge overlap, but sometimes it feels like there are two types of people who go to #LBM, PR folk and everyone else in the room. It sometimes feels too much like a PR networking event, rather than a bloggers meetup.

To demonstrate a point that I struggle to verbalise, how come after the event my blog here doesn't get streams of traffic from the sites of professional PR and marketing people? I'd have to pay for that wouldn't I. There ought to be lots of blog posts like this one listing people who were there, rather than a brief flurry of tweets dropping off the bottom of the page. There ought to be a London Bloggers roundup post, like the Britblog Roundup or Sugasm.

Interesting folk I spoke to include:-

Andy Bargery
Louis from Adcentered
A tall chap from teh Londonist
Caroline of Caroline's Miscellany
Meaghan from the Spoonfed event listings site

People I made brief eye-contact with include:-

Jaz Jazettera Jazeera Jazamatazz
The Londoneer
Andy Roberts
Fresh Plastic
Miss Geeky

People who I didn't talk to or make eye contact with:-

Annie Mole
The Red Rocket
My London Diary
Fake Plastic Noodles
Stephen Waddington
Milo Yiannopoulos
Brian the Pigeon
We Are Social
Just Giving
(admittedly some of these aren't people as such, but are blogs written by people who I didn't talk to, make eye-contact with or otherwise recognise)
I've probably missed loads of people, if I have, leave a comment and I'll fix the world.

Photies here, featuring me second on the left

There was a speechy talk thing by a Miss @hel_razor from The Equality and Human Rights Commission. It was about how they're engaging with the blogosphere now, and are interested to here what we have to ask of them and the ways we can engage with them. There were writers from the Guardian and other dead trees covering the event (should I feel used?).

My opinion of human rights is documented elsewhere, and whilst its good that government agencies are engaging, or at least opening themselves up to the public, there are already plenty of debates about human rights going on out there on the internet all the time, rather than wanting people to come to them, the Equality and Human Rights Commission could go out and engage.

There are already debates about Human Rights out on the blogosphere, with any number of players engaged with them, the government, the media, charities, bloggers. If a QUANGO wants to join the debate, they should do so but not by sitting back and asking people to come to them.

What about civil liberties? Actually, with Chakrabarti's Liberty, do we need a Government sponsored Human Rights organisation too? Hmm, now I think about it, I've been a big fan of Human Rights Watch, they do some excellent work around the world, do we need a Government sponsored Human Rights organisation?

Blah blah blah, can we have our money back?

Instead of the taxpayer having to pay for this with the threat of going to prison, can't we just vote out any government or authority that tramples what we believe are our fundamental human rights and we keep more of our money ourselves?

Its a bit rich to take our money, then ask us how the resources are to be deployed.


  1. Wadds Tech PR Blog25 March 2009 at 03:13

    Neat post. And fair kop. The PR folk are a growing presence. It wasn't always the way.

    Hope to catch-up at the next gig, and talk about growing stuff, and not PR or social meeja.

  2. I agree it would be nice to have a place we could meet up for a beer and an informal chat about blogging without being buttonholed by the London professional networkers each pushing their latest app, site, or startup. London Bloggers Meetups used to be such a place.

  3. Agreed with AndyR and post.

    AndyB is doing a great job, hopefully we'll get some of the old days back.


  4. I'm afriad I fall into the PR camp too and blog a bit too.

    It was my first one; lots of nice people and had good chin-wag about gaming, but I'll remember not to wear a suit next time ;-)


  5. I don't know if they have blogger meet ups in Dublin, but I don't think I would go to them. Aside from being *shy*, I don't really feel like I have anything in common with other people just because they write blogs.