Monday, February 9, 2009
Day One At UGCX
I am posting this before I leave for the inaugural User Generated Content Conference and Expo. I'm somewhat bleary-eyed from getting about 4 hours of sleep (boy the Grammy-related drama was certainly the buzz last night) but in high spirits. This will be one of those experiences I'll appreciate more and more as time goes by and I've realized I acquired another layer to my skill set.
So what is the UGCX exactly? It's a 2 day conference bringing together industry leaders and innovative types looking to connect with each other and consumers. Various companies and applicable business models must adapt to the needs of their user base to survive. We can take that into a larger forum and apply it to life: adapt or die. The conference focuses on 4 modules: Social Content; Music; Photography and Video & Gaming.
It's a timely subject with the argument over fair use and copyright infringement being fought between artist Shepard Fairey and the Associated Press over his use of a photo to make his now-iconic posters of #44.
Another panel I really enjoyed was The SC2: Marketing 2.0. That panel discussed how smartphone sales are huge worldwide but the marketshare for the United States is quite small by comparison. Yeah I have a theory about that seeing that I lived in the UK in 2003. Everyone was already mass texting each other, all incoming calls were free and my monthly service plan was 1/3rd the price of what it cost in the US. Their opinion was that more devices will continue to be sold though desktops/laptops will never be obsolete. Can you part with your phone? I know I am an admitted Crackberry addict.
What we do on the devices will continue to be further separate from the computer but it has to be fun. We are truly in the digital age. I think this is a great opportunity for people to create a niche for themselves. When you have a 9-year old creating applications for the iPhone isn't it time for some more people of color to think outside the box? Yet again I will lament who the majority of attendees and panelists were: white men. I think I saw three other Black people and they were all men.
People who don't adapt are going to be left behind. I don't need to understand C++ to know it's time to get with the program. My strengths lie not in programming but in being an intuitive user. There are many more things I'd like to do with a phone but most plans in the US aren't even selling the best ones like the Nokia N Series. I'm looking forward to the final set of sessions tomorrow. I mostly focused on music but the Video/Gaming industry is leading the future of everything (that and porn but I'm not touching that one!).
Looks like I'm going to stay a bit longer for an after-hours pitch session where Venture Capitalists may offer to fund some attendees. It's all going in my lock box (brain) for future reference!