people conferenceYes, apparently I do. I’m not talking about the usual pre-conference fare regarding the wearing of the comfortable shoes and rooming with a friend to save money. Oh no. It’s  a new day and Chris Brogan has taken me to school with social media. In his blog post “27 Things to do Before a Conference” . Gone are the reminders to look up where the cheap food can be found they are replaced with ways to use Twitter for networking at (and before) the conference and how to use other tools such as Flickr, LinkedIn and Google Blog Search to mine information about the people and companies you are likely to run into. We have the opportunity to enrich our conference experience in ways most of us could not have imagined 5 years ago.

I find this new line of assistance refreshing. Most of us go to conferences for the knowledge gained at sessions I also think many of us go to conferences to network and learn who is doing the moving and shaking. Who is innovating the field forward and who is just working hard and worth getting to know. Social media can be the dawn of a new age in conference going. As a librarian who has switched emphasis I feel particularly ripe for information like Chris Brogan’s to remind me of all the tools I have at my disposal and twists on how to use them pre and during conferences.

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