BarCamp NewsInnovation 2: Who I’m hoping to meet

Nearly 200 journalists, bloggers, innovators and technologists have signed up to attend the free-to-attend second national BarCamp NewsInnovation un-conference held this Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Temple University in North Philadelphia.

Last year, lots of attention came from the first national un-conference dedicated to news, information and journalism, and it was when I first became exasperated with the conversation that revolved around advertising and advertising alone as a print mode.

I spoke about community news sites with my two co-founders of Technically Philly and the upcoming challenges of branding online in a print-heavy community with the founder of NEast Philly. In both cases and what I felt was a bit of a trend, the conversation revolved around — even in April 2009 — about what had gone wrong and what we all were going to do about it.

In October, lead BCNI organizer Sean Blanda asked what should be different about the second. Lots of suggestions came his way, but I think one will happen a bit more naturally.

I’m expecting much more of a conversation about what we are doing now about the ‘future of journalism.’ So looking at the long list of attendees, I already have in my mind a handful of people who are doing things that I’ll be interested to meet.

Certainly, there isn’t a single person coming who I wouldn’t want to meet and chat. These are just a handful of people whose names caught my eye for my having never met them in person.

  • Mark Luckie, Journalist/Blogger, 10,000 Words — Luckie has been
  • Jessica Durkin, founder, InOtherNews.us — She’s doing a great job chronicling all of the hyperlocal news sites in the ether, and despite a few introductions and e-mails, we haven’t actually met yet.
  • Dan Berko, Database Specialist, New York Times — I don’t know Dan, but there’s no shortage of interest in the power of the Web transforming heavy data sets — around government, studies or other research heavy materials — and making them more accessible, revolutionizing what a journalist is and how he or she operates. I’d be Dan would have something to say about it.
  • Brian Manzullo, Editor in Chief, Central Michigan Life — College kids are usually have lots of ideas, so I hope to see what the leader of a college newspaper with a great looking Web site might have to say about his future.
  • Yuri Victor, Product Design and Development Manager, Gannett — Much like Dan, I can’t say I know his name, but the business, design and development of the news is as important a conversation about how it will continue to transition as anything.
  • Tim Lee, Associate Engineer, Comcast — I love me some conversations on how everyone becomes a content creator and a member of the media in the future of the news. Comcast — say what you will about them — is a company that seems keenly aware of that, strategically maneuvering a legacy cable company toward a different future. (I’ve thought about chatting a bit about how news is related to my work with nonprofit Back on My Feet, in the same vein of new content players)
  • Geoff Samek, Editor in Chief, Sacramento Press — I don’t see him on the attendee list yet, but by way of a mutual friend, I heard Geoff was planning on making the trip. Like Jessica and Mark, I’ve known Geoff in an online sense, but his work with SacPress so interests and relates to what I’ve seen with TP and NEast, that I’m itching to introduce myself and chat a bit.

The real take away here is that it’ll be hard to not come away with a meaningful conversation, meeting or thought from BCNIPhilly this Saturday. So get your sense together, reserve a spot and come out — and present something. Check out a panel picker here.

If you’re in to brands, lead organizer Sean Blanda shares just some of more recognizable brands that are due to come.