Community / Media

Five reasons Salon LGBTQ is incredibly exciting and you need to join us there

SalonLGBTQ-300pxPeople! We’re now a month out from Salon LGBTQ, the first national conference focusing on LGBTQ social media, happening October 17 – 19 in Atlanta. Or Hotlanta, as you prefer. I can’t begin to tell you what it means to me. Scratch that. Of course I can, and in fact as you might imagine, I will. At least I’ll try.

Last week, Vikki said Salon LGBTQ would be like Xanadu, only queer. I totally agree with everything she wrote. Especially the part about how valuable it is to make in-person connections with the people who matter to you online. We do an enormous amount of social, emotional, and political work online, and we share it and rave it and critique it and make it better using social media. Case in point: you’re soaking in it right now! 

But there’s a downside: we’re forming more and more meaningful connections to people who are farther and farther away from us. Conferences like Salon LGBTQ collapse that distance, even if for a few days, and the impact is immeasurable. Here are five more reasons Salon LGBTQ is incredibly exciting and you need to join us there:

1. The first go ’round of anything  is by nature really interesting. It’s constrained by fewer expectations, there’s a sense of openness and curiosity, there’s less to compare to. Think of your favorite artist’s first album. Nothing like it.  Or the first canoodle with your honey (!). Salon LGBTQ represents the first time we’ll have a gathering of queer and ally social media people, all together in the same place at the same time for the express purpose of sharing insight and discovering (or up and deciding) what we can do together next. BAM!

2. We’re in really, really good hands. Full disclosure: I personally love Deb Rox, Salon’s impresario extraordinaire. But I also professionally love her. (No, not in the gigolo sense!) Her experience is deep; her insight is sharp; she has been a highly sought-after speaker and consultant on all things social media, for good reason. She has been contributing to and shaping online conversations for over a half-dozen years, and is uniquely qualified to pull together the people from the worlds of commerce, activism, and ideas that are worth listening to.

3. Social media is one of the most potent tools we have right now, and we need to help each other know how to marshal it even better.  I think you probably know this: more than three-quarters of Americans are online, and seven in ten of us online adults are using social networking sites. [1]  But LGBTQ people are even more online, proportionately, than our straight pals.[2] We are an especially social people, for good reason: in a world that doesn’t yet fully understand (or empower) us, we empower ourselves, finding and using any tool that will shrink the distance between question and answer, need and support, quip and chuckle of recognition. Let’s figure out and sharpen that tool together, shall we?

4. People who commit to an event like this are the ones you want to rub shoulders with. Another facet of point #1: the first go ’round of something also means that attendees take a risk in coming. We don’t have selfies and Tweets and blog posts and media coverage and first person accounts from last year’s Salon to go by, so yes: it’s a gamble. And you know what you can bank on, as a result? Folks at Salon LGBTQ 13  will by definition be the select crowd of folks willing to take that leap, people so invested in LGBTQ voice and vision online that they’re first in line. Look at them on the Salon speakers page: passionate, engaged, experienced, innovative advocates, the lot of ’em.

5. We need you there. We need you; we need people you think should be there. The more and varied the voices, the more cool/ brilliant/ inspired ideas we’ll be able to unlock.  More connections, more groundwork for collaboration, deeper understanding, better-stocked tool kits, richer insights. You get the idea. You want it a little easier? Enter the code “family” when you register, and you’ll get a $100 discount. You’re welcome.

Now what are you waiting for?



[1] “Pew Internet: Social Networking (full detail),” Pew Research Center, 5 August 2013. <http://pewinternet.org/Commentary/2012/March/Pew-Internet-Social-Networking-full-detail.aspx>

[2] “Study: Gay And Lesbian Adults Are More Avid Blog Readers, Social Network Users,” TechCrunch, 13 July, 2010. <http://techcrunch.com/2010/07/13/study-gay-and-lesbian-adults-are-more-avid-blog-readers-social-network-users/>

Tags: , , ,

4 Comments

  1. CANNOT WAIT! sooooo freakin’ excited for Hotlanta. It’s gonna be epic!

    • sdlkfjsdoifcjsod9fuw;erjwoeq;ufdsc!@#$%^&*(

      Translation: Me too! Excited, period; excited you’re excited; your being excited makes me even more excited. READ NOTHING INTO THAT I’M A MARRIED MAN.

      Atlanta or bust(s)!

  2. Wish I could! It smacks up against my next half marathon, or I’d be there!

  3. No vacation days left + living in Albania means I am out. But absolutely there in spirit! (And VERY jealous)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.