Wednesday: Talking about SVW on two panels
Wednesday morning I spoke on a panel alongside some of the top journalists covering Silicon Valley: David Kirkpatrick from Fortune, Jay Bonasia from Investor's Business Daily, and Rachel Konrad from Associated Press. (More details here)
Then in the evening, I did it again, I was on a panel with Om Malik from GigaOm, and Matt Marshall from VentureBeat. What was interesting was that in the morning I addressed an audience of public relations professionals, and in the evening I spoke to an audience of media professionals--both audiences are trying to understand what blogging is about and how it impacts their work.
I knew many of the people at the evening event, which is a newly formed "tech writers" group organized by Dean Takahashi and Elise Ackerman, reporters at the San Jose Mercury.
The group consists of about 50 of the top reporters covering Silicon Valley. Dean and Elise have done an excellent job in bringing reporters together--it is extremely rare that we can chat with each other without PR people or others in the mix.
We met in an Italian restaurant in San Francisco. Matt spoke first, then Om, and then it was my turn to talk about the trials and tribulations of becoming a blogger journalist. The content of the evening is all off the record. However, I can write about some of the things that I talked about.
I spoke about how much I liked my job, and some of the many unexpected discoveries and insights that have occurred since I left the Financial Times in May 2004. I also said I didn't particularly like the work of trying to build a business and all that entails.
The operational aspects of running a business are time consuming. I'd much prefer just going out, talking to people, coming back, and writing. That is the simple life that every journalist wants. However, an independent blogger journalist has to do 15 other jobs/tasks too.
So it was great to hear Matt and Om talk about this aspect of their work and to hear about their pain. I just hope that we managed to discourage the assembled hacks from rushing out and doing the same as us, we don't need more competition :-)