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read_me.gif Southern Voice Washington Blade

10: Favorite Folk At SXSW

People make the web go ‘round

by j. brotherlove

Are you tired of reading posts about how great SXSW Interactive was? Great, here’s another. One thing I want to stress about the conference is that there is no shortage of great people to meet. Even if you suffer from introversion (like myself),it is possible to interact with fine folks. That may sound surprising, considering the number of übergeeks in attendance.

With so much focus on monetizing technologies, tagging, startups, podcasting and everything Web 2.0., it’s important to remember that People make the web go ‘round. Without the proper people in your corner egging you on, testing your product and hawking your brilliance, we wouldn’t get very far. That said, the following folks helped define this year’s conference for me.

1. DL Byron. Out of all the panels I attended, DL Byron was the only panelist who approached me afterward and personally thanked me for attending. I’ve always admired his work but that single act of kindness helped assure me when I was feeling like an outsider at SXSW.

2. Dru Blood. The sheer joy on Dru’s face mirrored mine when we discovered each other’ after the We Got Naked, Now What? panel. And we kept running into each other. And she kept making me smile. And she gave me a mix CD. And…

3. George Kelly. George can network his ass off! He is the kindest, sharpest, and most comprehensive person I have ever met. He will probably be embarrassed to know this because he is also one of the most humble people I know.

4. Heather B. Armstrong. Sure Dooce gets a lot of attention. But I have been reading Heather’s blog for five years (before her namesake became a verb). At the keynote, she was as quirky and entertaining as she is online (which is a good thing because Kottke was drowning on that stage - bless his heart).

5. Hugh Forrest. Hugh is approachable, thoughtful, smart and an all-around good egg. SXSW is lucky to have him. I hope to interact more closely in the future.

6. Jason Santa Maria. Like most modern web designers, I admire Jason’s work. But can I just say he is as sexy as he is talented? Woot! Major crush. (I apologize to Jason in advance - he is quite happily married).

7. Joelle Reeder. Joelle was sweet and helpful and seemed genuine in telling me How to Make $$ With Your Blog Design Skills. I soaked it all up and took plenty of notes!

8. Shaun Inman. You think Mint is something? I was fascinated watching Shaun on the Does Your Blog Have a Business? panel. I swear his brain runs at 100mph. I respect him even more.

9. Tiffany B Brown. Tiffany was the only person at SXSW who sat on three panels, drank Grey Goose straight (no chaser), danced to the gulliest hip hop and ate beef fajitas on 6th street. Proof that you can have it all. She rocks and is my new role model.

10. Veerle Pieters. Veerle’s designs are always well-designed and just plain beautiful to look at. I had a chance to see her on the Starting Small: Web Business for the Rest of Us panel. I expected her to be insightful but was caught off guard by how beautiful she is, inside and out. Another crush.

pub: 03/19/2006 | previous entry | next entry | feedback x 2 | subscribe

Yay! So honored to make your top ten!

Aw, thanks! It was great to meet you, too. :)