today'smeet: an alternative backchannel

Twitter seems to be the defacto backchannel at library conferences and events but at WebWise the other day Nina Simon suggested that everyone also use a site called Today’sMeet. I haven’t been inclined to report on conferences via Twitter nor have I used it very much to communicate with others during presentations. This is probably because I don’t find that type of reporting too compelling. One exception is when people highlight smart things people have said, but I like that when it isn’t in a conference reporting context too.

This being said, I did check out and use the WebWise Today’sMeet and liked it. It was more like an instant, disposable chat room than Twitter and that’s why I liked it.

  • It wasn’t global. I’m pretty sure only people at the conference knew about the room and it felt very local and community-y.
  • It didn’t place an emphasis on the poster. There were no pictures or avatars. Mostly it is just what people typed and a small attribution.
  • It didn’t require an account or login so more people could get in on the action. It was link an IRC backchannel for all.

While tweeting about conferences via hashtags is great for people not at events, keeping up with parts of events you’re at but can’t attend, highlighting interesting ideas and people’s perceptions, Today’sMeet was nice in these other ways.

6 thoughts on “today'smeet: an alternative backchannel”

  1. I did a little analysis on the difference between the content on Today’sMeet and Twitter related to WebWise. Today’sMeet was much more conversational, with people pointing to related ideas and links; Twitter, much more for retweeting notable quotes from the conference.

    One of the notable things about why Today’sMeet worked in this context is that WebWise was an “everyone in one room” conference. I think it would be incredibly confusing if used for the backend for a conference with parallel tracks (unless each session hosted their own room, which is doable). I often use it when I’m speaking–even to a small group–in a single room situation. I think it enhances the “secondary learning” track of people sharing links related to what I’m saying, following the rabbit holes of interest to them.

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