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If you haven’t heard there was quite a reaction to our closing keynote at BlogWorld New York. From some very heartfelt honest posts with valid complaints from people like Marcus Sheridan and Jennifer Fong to the typical peanut gallery who like to use every social media controversy as a way to promote their own agendas.
While Dave and I were watching the closing keynote Thursday we were both cringing. The videos were too long, they weren’t being played at the right times, the band wasn’t able to rehearse with the guests beforehand so they weren’t right on cue, the mics were feeding back when they worked at all. The Rhythm was completely off. What we thought could have been our best closing keynote ever was falling apart before our eyes. We felt terrible for Chris Brogan who had agreed to host the show and kept trying to get it back on track.
Then we saw the reactions. People weren’t complaining about the production, they were complaining about the content. Andrew Breitbart was too political for some, Shauna Glenn’s video was demeaning to women in technology said others, How could we allow Sara Benincasa to perform a very adult stand-up routine where she eviscerated literally everyone and everything we had been talking about for the last three days after we had asked Danny Brown and Gini Dietrich to change the original title of their blog post from “Doucheblogs and Spin Doctors” to something else?
After reading some of the posts and comments, we were relieved. This was something we could defend. Dave, Deb, Patti and I were all talking to each other in a series of phone calls and I asked Dave to just record the conversation we were having.
I think this better explains why we chose the format and the guests we did so please listen to that at the bottom of this post.
We do need to apologize to anyone who was offended by the humor and who felt like they were not warned sufficiently ahead of time. We thought we had made this clear in the show directory, in our email newsletter, on our blog and the online schedule but we obviously completely failed.
Please accept my personal apology for that. I promise you it will not happen again. People will know full well going in what to expect.
We would also like to apologize to our panelists and our host Chris Brogan for any negative reactions they may have received because of their participation. We wanted this to be fun for everyone. Dave and I are responsible for this, not anyone else.
That being said even with the complaints we still believe there is a place for this type of content at BlogWorld.
Our industry is made up of millions of communities and content creators and hundreds of thousands of genres. We believe we have a responsibility to represent as diverse a group of these communities and styles of digital content creation as possible. We owe it to all of you. We owe it to each other.
In his segment Andrew Breitbart told the story of how when Bill Maher said some very offensive things on his old TV show Politically Incorrect it was Shawn Hannity and Rush Limbaugh who came to his defense. Bill Maher wrote a personal letter to Limbaugh to thank him. The men couldn’t be further apart in their world views and throw hammers at each other daily over the airwaves but at the end of the day, they are all part of the same community of content creators.
This is a lesson we in new media can learn from some in the old media.
We would love to hear your feedback as well. How do you suggest we present this type of content in the future?
Are we completely off base?