Freedom of Consequences

Boo Hoo Hoo! πŸ˜€

Around February, 2008… approximately five (5) months ago, I decided to ask a member of the video message board, Seesmic if he REALLY, REALLY, REALLY, REALLY, REALLY wanted to represent himself as he did in a video that he made.

What happened? People started crying. BOO HOO HOO! YOU’RE BEING MEAN! YOU’RE TELLING HIM WHAT TO DO! BOO HOO HOO! πŸ˜€

Fast forward 5 months to this week’s events… where a *different* person got penalized for video that HE posted to the internet. Did he post it ~ a year ago? Yes. Was he penalized for it this week? Yes.

So now, maybe people can stop CRYING and WAKE UP! πŸ˜€ It doesn’t matter if you’re having a so-called private conversation with a so-called friend of yours if it’s AVAILABLE FOR THE PUBLIC TO VIEW. People are going to look at the one video that you did and make their own decisions about your content and about YOU as a person. They’re going to decide whether they want to socialize with “a person like this”. They’re going to decide whether they want to HIRE “a person like this”. They’re going to decide whether they want to SPONSOR “a person like this”.

The point I was trying to get across, almost half a year ago, is that all of your content is standalone. You have to treat every video and every text post and every picture as if people are going to look at that ONE item and form judgements about you. You can’t rely on OTHER posts to pull you back into the frying pan out of the fire. You can’t rely on other people vouching for your character, ESPECIALLY when your video is viewed outside the realm in which your friends have juice. If nobody’s ever heard of your friends or they just don’t care what your friends opinions are, you’re short.

The reason people were CRYING is because they want the internet to be about freedom of speech. Unfortunately for them, they’re missing the other side of the coin…

Freedom of Consequences

Yes, you are free and clear to use whatever low-class terms you like when you make video, audio or text posts to the internet. What happens next is… PEOPLE SEE YOU AS LOW-CLASS. Good for you. You’ve achieved your goal. You expressed yourself, and people have a new image of you that you’ve created. Similarly, if you create a video that people see as offensive… PEOPLE SEE YOU AS AN OFFENSIVE PERSON. That’s the way it works. You express yourself, and then, as Otir pointed out, you have ZERO CONTROL over what other people receive and internalize based on what you posted. This is what’s simultaneously fantastic and unfortunate about communication, especially on the internet.

Does it matter that whatever video you’re getting penalized for is a year old? No. People that saw it for the first time TODAY… feel upset about it TODAY…. NOT last year. Unfortunately, the fact that posts, especially video and audio are STANDALONE items means that whatever the focal point is of people being upset can now be embedded ad infinitum all over the web. Guess what? Your context is GONE! The text you wrote on your original page with the video? GONE! The links you had on that page to supporting material? GONE! Your entire library of work up until and surpassing that time? GONE! Comments from posters and/or supporters? GONE! The only thing that’s left is the content that you uploaded and the thoughts of the person who’s newly embedded your video on their page so they can show THEIR FRIENDS that you’re “a person like this”.

I was having a conversation IRL just last night, in which I thought I was anonymous, and then the chick… um… woman says “I’ve read your blog“, hahaha and it was time to change gears. Not because I was being inauthentic beforehand, but because now, I was aware that I wasn’t working with a clean slate. πŸ˜€ We still had a great and interesting convo, but it had already been tinted by her impression of who I am or what I’m about from reading my blog.

That’s the way it works. You express. Other people receive and take away what they want from what you expressed, regardless of your intentions when you posted the text, audio or video. I touched on this in a joking way in “Do NOT Let This Happen To You! :/”. I was saying “some stuff” and then Annie broke out her xacti and it was time for The Kid to say “other stuff”! πŸ˜€


Permalink: http://pixelcurrents.tv/post/33454768
Again… Not because I was being inauthentic when the camera was off, but because what I was saying wasn’t for general consumption. It was a conversation I was having with my friends and totally wouldn’t have made sense outside of the context that they all had from being friends of mine and actually knowing me. I mean… It would have made sense, πŸ™‚ but I can’t express to randoms the same thing I can express to people that have background knowledge of who I am, what I do and why I do it with anywhere near the same effect.
 
Similarly… If you do a video that you put out on public channels that for some odd reason, you consider private… be prepared for people that you didn’t intend to watch that video to view it and make up their minds about “who you are” as a person. If you do a video that you think is funny to your friends and people that know you, and put it on public channels… be prepared for people that you didn’t intend to watch that video to view it and make up their minds about “who you are” as a person. Is there freedom of speech? Of course there is. There’s also OWNERSHIP. OF. CONSEQUENCES.

That was my whole point back on Seesmic.

I couldn’t care ANY LESS how people express themselves on the net.

I wanted people to realize is that they eventually might have to OWN the consequences of their actions/words/videos, and that’s what we all got a front row seat to this very week.

Welcome to the real world, Neo.

Why Are You Doing A Live Show?

Thanks *ENTIRELY* to becoming aware of Jonny Goldstein and his show Reinventing Television in October, 2006, I’ve been doing live shows for almost two years now.


At this point, doing live shows has become a fad. Justin.TV, LiveVideo, Yahoo Live, Mogulus, Operator11, BlogTV, Ustream, Stickam, is YouTube doing live video now? There are tons of people doing live shows now, but to what effect? For what purpose?

I streamed several sessions live from PodCampNYC 2.

I do live shows from my “Live” page:

I still follow and participate in Jonny’s shows on BlogTV:


Rana Part 1

IME, There are only two reasons to do a show live. 1) You’re broadcasting time-sensitive information, or 2) You want your audience to be able to interact live with the hosts & guests.

Time-Sensitive Programming

Time-sensitive information would be the new Apple announcements as they’re occurring or maybe a sporting event like a football game or an MMA event. Basically, it’s a replacement for people not being able to travel to that location and view it themselves, in person. This is why I was streaming sessions from PodCampNYC. There were people in other towns that I was in communication with that were interested in seeing what was going on in NYC *while* it was going on.

In this case, there was communication with me, but not with the people doing the panels. The idea was to give the experience of “being there”. Then again, *I* was the one doing the show, not the panelists, so there actually WAS direct interaction with the host.

Most of the services I mentioned will save your video for you as an archive. This means that if your information isn’t time-sensitive, more people will watch the archive asynchronously than will tune in at that particular day and time to watch your show live. The only incentive they have to tune in live is reason #2.

Audience Participation

The only reason to bother tuning in to an internet show at a particular time instead of watching it whenever you get around to it is that you’re going to have a different experience during the live show than you have watching the archive.

George Kelly did a live show on Yahoo a few months back that I thought was really enjoyable and well-done. George plays guitar, and instead of having people tune in to watch him play whatever he had already decided, he was taking requests from the chat room. Automatically, there was value added, because the show was being created on the fly. Meanwhile, the text-chatters were socializing amongst themselves. George was in and out of attention to the chat room and “a fine time was had by all”. πŸ˜€

Jonny Goldstein‘s shows are fun because he does them consistently and has built up a “studio audience” that’s gotten to know each other via his show and maintained our relationships via other formats of social media. Jonny’s very attentive to the chat room, and he’s more of a facilitator of conversation than someone that just sits there talking to a guest as if there’s no live audience.

The reason I was thinking about this is that as stingy as companies are in trying to leverage pre-recorded video and UGC (User-Generated Content), I can’t see *WHY* they would turn around and waste their money making LIVE shows that are the exact same experience as the saved archive. Where’s the ROI? Are there really so many extra people tuning in to the live show that it justifies the expenditure? Isn’t it just preaching to the choir? For that, assemble the same hosts & guests, turn a video camera on, turn it back off, edit & upload that video and you’ll have just as many people watching it while retaining ducats in your video budget to create some worthwhile programming.

Perhaps ask yourself “What difference does it make if my audience watches my show live versus if they watch it later today?” or “What difference does it make if my audience watches this show next Tuesday, or next month?” If the answer is *NONE*, then save your money and focus on pre-recorded content.

~Bill Cammack

Twitter: BillCammack
Subscribe via RSS or Email
Social Media Category: billcammack.com/category/social-media
 

Do NOT Let This Happen To You! :/

Due to a series of unfortunate circumstances (all of my own creation), this video was filmed by Annie Boccio and uploaded to the internet. We are going to discuss the errors I made that led to this and how YOU can avoid this from happening to YOU in the future. πŸ˜€


Permalink: http://pixelcurrents.tv/post/33454768

Error #1: Do NOT hang out with people who post pictures and videos to the internet. πŸ™‚

I wasn’t paying attention and started doing my usual bar routines that I do to people who never record it. I always leave the situations feeling like I had fun messing with people’s minds, and that by the next morning, it would all fade away and I can forget about it or do it again the next night if I so choose. πŸ™‚

What I wasn’t paying attention to was that we were @ PodCampNYC and I was literally SURROUNDED by media-makers. I’m used to being the only one in the room interested in documenting hangouts, and since I had no intention of recording anything, I was just flowing and enjoying some mental recreation… Next thing I know, I notice a small red camera in Annie’s hands, and as Roxanne CoughBenedictArnoldCough Darling mentioned, it was time to change my tune! πŸ˜€

Error #2: Make sure you have a feasible and smooth-sounding counter-statement to what you were saying before the camera was turned on. πŸ™‚

When I saw Annie’s camera, I blanked. πŸ™‚ Whatever I had been talking about completely left my mind, and I had the choices of either saying something opposite or saying nothing at all. I really wanted to say NOTHING, but I decided to “go big or go home”. I decided to challenge myself to come off smooth and convincing at the drop of a hat on a topic that I never talk about = EPIC FAIL! πŸ˜€

If you’ve read any of the DatingGenius series, you know that the basic premise is that people suck in general and that the sooner you realize this, the better you’ll be able to handle the curveballs that relationships throw at you. The opposite of “people suck” is “people are good”, and I realized practically immediately after accepting my own challenge to GO FOR IT that I have no rolodex of GOOD things to say about people in general.

To go off on that tangent for a second… I believe that people SHOULD be “good” to begin with. I hardly see ‘doing the right thing’ as a reason to give someone props. It’s like Chris Rock said… Don’t brag about taking care of your kids… You’re SUPPOSED to take care of your kids! πŸ˜€ (for the reading-impaired, CoughTymeCough, I am making an example. I do NOT have any kids! :D) So, naturally, what’s wrong with your relationship or your perception of reality is that you fail to recognize how wack people can really be. Without that recognition, you can’t solve the problems of your own relationship because you never look in the right places. So, when things are right about a relationship, they’re SUPPOSED to be right, so there’s no reason to talk about them or have them readily mentally available. This is why I was suddenly at a loss when I ordered myself to “say nice things”.

Unfortunately for me, as I scanned backwards through history for something nice to say about women, I initially slid back to the 1960’s and Women’s Lib (apparently known as Second-Wave Feminism), but quickly landed on the rocky bottom of Women’s Suffrage. I then produced some drivel about equal pay and women driving tanks in the military. Pathetic. πŸ™‚ My mind was racing too fast to notice the look on Rox’s face, but that brings us to error #3.

Error #3: Do not try this 180-degree style with someone with whom you’ve already had intelligent conversations. πŸ™‚

In another split-second, spur-of-the-moment calculation that occurred at the same time I decided to try to talk my way out… I had been counting on Rox to back my play. Unfortunately for me, I’ve had hours of genuine, intelligent conversation with her over the time we’ve known each other, so it was clear to her that I was merely spewing propaganda and poorly-prepared propaganda at that! πŸ™‚ The look on her face is “I don’t even BELIEVE that he’s saying this stuff! :/” So that backfired as well, and she mentions on tape that I was saying something completely different before Annie pressed REC.

Error #4: Do not hope that the fliming is over and go back to what you were talking about. πŸ™‚

Clearly, by clip #2 in Annie’s video, I was no longer thinking about the camera, which is why a) I’m back to my regular mode of conversation and b) I’m suddenly wearing glasses. I’m clearly restarting the “on camera” mental functions because I speak ambiguously and appear to make an error. I say

“Dating and women in New York City? (stalling) Well… (stalling) um… (stalling) Women… should be, uh… (thinking) nice as possible to guys in New York City because… they’re outnumbered…”

Jonny Goldstein calls me on this “error” before I get to continue my statement, and I end up agreeing with him about the mistake, making myself look worse! πŸ™‚ The “they” that are outnumbered are the men. The proper continuation of the sentence is “Women should be as nice as possible to guys in New York City, because they’re outnumbered and can choose any women they want out of the 210,820 surplus single females in this town. BUT… Of Course… That didn’t work out for me either, because I was winging it.

Having said all that… How many preparations have I made in case this ever happens again?

None.

This was a complete anomaly. We were at a social media gathering. We all knew of each other to some degree because of blogging and videoblogging. There were cameras all over the place. I don’t think I’ve ever shown up in so much random media at one time. I got lax and stared entertaining our little group of Rox, Joe, Annie and Jonny with some DatingGenius shenanigans and received a visual lesson in how poorly I play things off when I’m trying to talk about things I never think about.

Hmm…

Maybe I should practice filming telling a chick I love her… In case I ever mean it! πŸ˜€

Jen, Jonny & Rox



Jen, Jonny & Rox, originally uploaded by Bill Cammack.

Jen Myronuk, Jonny Goldstein & Roxanne Darling
PodCampNYC 2
April 25, 2008

How Social is “Social” Media?

Jonny Goldstein interviewed me back in August 2007 on his show Jonny’s Par-Tay [link]. Looking at the countdown timer to the end of the show, around -18:00 he asks me “So… Did you feel a little lonely before you got into all the social media stuff?” to which my response was that I’m actually LESS social NOW than I was before…

Jonny’s response was that it CAN lead to socializing, and he mentioned an instance of an IRL event, Vloggercue, hosted by Wreck and Salvage’s Adam Quirk that he was going to attend BECAUSE of the people that he met and knew because of social media.

While I agree that it CAN… How often *DOES* social media lead to actual social inteaction, for YOU? My point was that I became less social instead of more social because of the fact that my friends are always at my fingertips. For the sake of this post, I’m defining “social” as actually going somewhere to hang out with friends of mine, IRL.

Frisbee Group, April 14 2007 by Bill Cammack

Everyone sitting at that table (Grace, Rachel, Charles, Obreahny, Sandra & Mike), I’m only *seconds* away from interacting with, via social media, wherever I am. Instant messaging, status updates, texting, email, sites, forums, groups. I did a shoot in Central Park with Obreahny and uploaded it to my server sitting out in Central Park, using the park’s wireless access. I get footage from clients overseas via FTP, talk to them on skype or iChat and send them quicktime files for approval/changes. I watched a live stream of PodCamp Philly from NYC and appeared on-screen @ PodCamp Boston while I was sitting in a living room in Maryland.

There’s no reason for me to physically go ANYWHERE unless physically interacting with that person is the reason I’m going. You can’t go snowboarding together unless you actually go snowboarding. Other than that, the current state of communications enables you to be AS in-touch with someone as you want to be. I talk to my friend @CaliNative all day, every day. We’re both MIT Graduates, but we live 3,000 miles apart from each other and never met each other IRL. Meanwhile, there are people that have given me business cards, right here in NYC, that I never spoke to again after that particular day that we met.

Social media allows you to define your enviroment. You can create and maintain relationships that transcend physical and territorial boundaries. You can hold 5 completely separate instant message conversations at a time, which is absolutely impossible on the phone. Does that make you MORE social?… or LESS social? Is “social” being re-defined by technology enabling us to envision new directions?

I also say I’m less social because my tolerance for idiocy has plummeted. πŸ™‚ I didn’t have a lot of that to BEGIN with, but when you get to pick and choose the people you interact with on the basis of their intelligence, common sense and relevance relative to what YOU find interesting or important, it becomes really tough to tolerate people talking about ‘nothing’, or their own agenda which has nothing to do with what you find to be valuable in life.


Anil, Mike, Justin, Debbie, Grace, Bill, Kenyatta, Eric

Photo Credit: Jared Klett

So, yes. Social media DEFINITELY leads to situations where we all get together and have a good time, IRL. I think that more often, social media allows us to FEIGN getting together, which is actually *less* social than more so.

Bill Cammack Ò€’ Cammack Media Group, LLC

Are You A Tech Elitist?

Are *you* a Tech Elitist? If so, how’s that workin’ for ya?

As it’s now Christmas, and we think of The Grinch sitting high on the hill, looking down on all the little people of the village with contempt… Let’s consider our own positions in our respective fields and how we’ve chosen social media sites & groups as well as whom we’ve chosen to affiliate ourselves with.

There was much change during 2007. More ways to communicate. More social sites to join. More video hosts with their own little gimmicks that made them slightly different from the rest. New video editing software. New storage solutions. New live streaming options….

As new opportunities arose, there was a lot of bandwagon-jumping. Sometimes it stuck, sometimes it didn’t. When Twitter was initially unreliable, OFTEN, eventually, Jaiku came along, and there was a mass exodus. The backup plan for when Twitter would go down was for people to immediately start posting on Jaiku until the problem was resolved. Eventually, Twitter became stable, and I didn’t hear a peep about Jaiku for months until they got bought by Google. All of a sudden, here come the Jaiku friend requests.

Even within Twitter, there was bandwagon-jumping. Apps were created so you didn’t have to use the twitter web page with your browser. Some people stuck with them. Some people bailed back to the web site when they realized how many twitter posts the apps weren’t picking up. Eventually, people found found satisfaction in how they received twitter posts. At some point during ’07, Pownce became a player as well.

There was much debate about which status update application was better between the three of them. I ended up sticking with Twitter, and once every so often, I copy/paste redundant posts to Pownce & Jaiku for people that primarily (if not exclusively) use those sites. I’m also biased towards Twitter because I have 341 contacts there vs. 117 on Pownce and 50 on Jaiku, many of which are redundant for the reason I stated earlier. So, for the sake of this post, I’ll say I made the ‘elitist’ decision that Twitter was better for my purposes and essentially neglect the other two services.

On the social site front, I used to have a regular MySpace presence. I had somewhere around 500 “friends” that were rather randomly acquired. What I mean by that is that I had probably 100 contacts that I knew from some other site or forum or that I actually knew IRL and then another 400 or so people/companies that sent me a friends request and then essentially never talked to me “again”. πŸ˜€ … “Again” has to be in quotes, because they never TALKED to me the first time. All they did was click a button that sent me a friends request, and I accepted it. I enjoyed interacting with my actual friends on MySpace, but the vast majority of it I found to be utterly worthless. MySpace is fantastic if you’re a musician or an artist, but I didn’t make many new relationships on MySpace that were worth anything.

Eventually, Facebook stepped its game up, and I migrated to “the better site”. Similar to my Twitter bias for status updates, my MySpace dealings dwindled to ZERO. In fact, if someone didn’t have a facebook account, I wouldn’t even bother to look them up on MySpace. πŸ™‚ “Everybody who was anybody” was on Facebook, so there wasn’t any need to ‘waste’ time on other mass social sites. Recently, someone mentioned MySpace to me, and I inadvertently laughed and said something like “You *still* use your MySpace account?” She replied that she interacts with the people that she knows because of business on Facebook, but her IRL friends are all still on MySpace. I hadn’t thought about it before, but as I sit here on my Facebook hill with contempt… I’m now wondering how many of my ACTUAL friends are still down in the MySpace village, having never made the jump to “the better site”.

The reason Facebook is better for me is that I deal with social media every day of the week. Now that I’m thinking about it, for the average joe, MySpace is more than enough, and there’s no reason for them to look for better connectivity to more REAL people. So now I have to consider whether it’s more beneficial to me to move some of my Facebook-time back to MySpace instead of concentrating solely on the site that’s clearly superior for my purposes.

Next, you have video hosts. I use blip.tv because the options and functionalities serve my purposes as I maintain my own video blogs using WordPress, Show-In-A-Box and vPiP. Meanwhile, other people talk into their webcams and post videos to YouTube. I’ve posted a few videos to YouTube for test purposes, but I wasn’t impressed with the video compression quality at the time, I wasn’t impressed with the Terms of Service and I *CERTAINLY* wasn’t impressed with the dimwitted remarks people love to leave in the comments sections.

For those reasons and others, I’ve left YouTube just about completely alone… However, you can’t argue with the numbers of views that people get, assuming they get “featured”. YouTube has become the go-to for people looking for any kind of video under the sun, so just by having your video there, you have more of a chance of it going viral than if you oh-so-elitely plan, film, edit, compress, upload, post, tag and advertise your own videos like I do. πŸ™‚

The question, again, is “How’s that workin’ for ya?”. Fortunately, another 2007 development is TubeMogul which enables you to upload a video once and have it distributed to multiple video sharing sites. TubeMogul also tracks statistics for you across several sites. So now, there’s less incentive to keep “all your eggs in one basket”.

I’m sure we can look forward to lots more fantastic developments in 2008. πŸ™‚ Personally, I’ll be paying more attention than I was this year as far as whether I’d like to consolidate or expand in the areas of status updates, social sites and video hosting sites. I didn’t even get to talk about live streaming options, like how I think Operator11 is infinitely better than BlogTV….. except Operator11 went completely offline for more than a week, so people like Jonny Goldstein had to retreat to other live streaming sites to keep their shows going. Of course, there’s no way to add a BlogTV archive to your Operator11 show archive, so c’est la vie. :/

Anyway… I think it’s in all of our best interests to pay attention not only to which new app or site has cool features or the elite people flocking to it, but also to whether we’re trading away communications with our core viewers, friends, contacts and followers. Just like The Grinch found out… it’s lonely at the top.

Bill Cammack Ò€’ Cammack Media Group, LLC

ReinventingTV061116d



ReinventingTV061116d, originally uploaded by Bill Cammack.

Reinventing Television, Nov 16, 2006

Jonny Goldstein, Steve Woolf, Zadi Diaz, Dan McVicar

end of days…..

On December 31, 2006, almost 10 months ago, I decided I was going to do a text blog. I needed a title, since I didn’t want it to be called “Bill’s Blog”… *YAWN*

As I searched my mind for a title that meant something to me at the time, “Wasted Days” is what I decided was the most relevant. At the time, I wrote:

The blog is named Ò€œWasted DaysÒ€. I donÒ€ℒt know why. I just like that name. WellÒ€¦ I think I DO know why, but the reasons arenÒ€ℒt tangible right now, so thereÒ€ℒs nothing to say/print/type about it.

I did know why I was writing “Wasted Days” at the time, however, I didn’t feel like ‘flavoring’ the blog with the reason, so I left it out. Also, the reason didn’t permeate my existence, so it wasn’t really fair to call the blog “Wasted Days” to begin with. I didn’t want to add to that unfairness by clarifying my personal meaning for the title.

As this seems to be the season for people ending things, such as blogs, and starting new ones, I was prompted to revisit my text blog, which I had long since abandoned anyway. I figured I’d wrap it up, so that’s what I’m doing right now. I’m ending “Wasted Days”, because the ‘period’ is no longer relevant, and things have morphed so much in the last 10 months (really, even the last three months) that it’s really time for something new. πŸ™‚

To me, Days are Wasted when you know there’s something you want to do or that you feel you *SHOULD* be doing, and you’re not doing it. For me, at that time of title-creation, my not-doing was that I had (and still have) a very special and important-to-me friend that lives on the other side of the country that I had never met IRL, and I knew that as inspiring to me as she was [is], that I wasn’t going to go see her.

Bill Cammack - Wasted Days
The Ghost in the Machine

This was a strange situation for me at the time, because I’m not a long-distance person. It’s basically “out of sight, out of mind”, and I’m not usually inclined to even consider girls that don’t live in Manhattan, and even then, within about 15 minutes on public transportation from my house. πŸ™‚ Nevertheless, thanks to the wonders of the internet (no… not J-date), here I was, admiring someone that I would be bugging every day to hang out if she lived within my AO [Area of Operations], but since she doesn’t, I remained here and she remained there, and my days remained wasted.

“Wasted Days” had the fringe benefit of loosely alluding to alcoholic beverage consuption, πŸ˜€ but it was really about “What would you do if you couldn’t [wouldn’t] do what you really felt like you *should* be doing?”. This is why, in December of last year, my days were wasted.

I believe the first thing I noticed was that since I was blogging, the days weren’t actually wasted, almost from the beginning. I was being creative. I was doing something I felt was interesting and worthwhile. I was also learning… Learning about the process of blogging, tagging, social sites, myspace, facebook, linkedin, ning… I was learning about editing with new software & incorporating new techniques. I was learning about compresson, flash, h.264, fps, data rates… So, once again, even though, inspirationally, the days were wasted, they really weren’t wasted at all…..

Meanwhile, I was making new friends.

Frisbee Group, April 14 2007
Bill, Grace, Rachel, Charles, Obreahny, Sandra, Mike

I’ve always been blessed with fantastic friends… the few, the elite. Ever since kindergarten, and probably before I can remember, I’ve always had my “crews”. Necessarily, as time goes on, we move from social location to social location, from Elementary to JHS to HS to College, some folks to Grad School, then to the workplace, different neighborhoods to live in, different gyms to join… There’s always the building and eventual dissolving of “crews”. The internet in general, and videoblogging in particular has now changed all of that. People are seeing, hearing and learning about like-minded individuals and groups all over the planet and making global, international alliances. This has completely replaced… for me, anyway… local interactions based on physical proximity.

Without recapping the last ten months, which has included 202 linkedin contacts, 279 facebook friends, 247 twitter followers (lots of overlap between all three), etc etc etc… (which I only bring up because it’s an OUTLANDISH number for someone like me that’s used to selecting a few CLOSE, CLOSE friends and staking our claim in the universe)… there were a couple of events in particular that really made me “sit up and take notice” as far as what was really going on and how my Days were TOTALLY not being Wasted….

The first event was meeting Roxanne Darling IRL (In Real Life). We had met via the Yahoo Videoblogger’s group and she had reason to be in NYC, all the way from her home in Hawaii. The first thing that was striking to me was that she just set up the camera and was ready to do an episode of her show Beach Walks with Rox… which now that I checked out that post, that was actually last November 9th, before I even started “Wasted Days”… Anyway… she was ready to just do an episode with no rehearsal, no talking about what we were going to discuss… NOTHING! :O … Just turn on the camera and talk to each other… I was like WHAT??? But I rolled with it, and it came out ok. πŸ™‚

That was a learning experience in and of itself, however, we hung out afterwards and had this really great, intelligent, fascinating conversation, mostly about videoblogging and “the space”, but also about life in general. As I’ve told Rox, that was the best IRL conversation I had had with someone I knew from the internet in AGES. I wasn’t aware at the time that *THIS* is the potential of the internet where people get to express themselves and align themselves with people who have similar viewpoints or even people who have opposing, yet intelligently articulated viewpoints. I knew there was something ‘odd’ (read: FANTASTIC!!!) going on, but I didn’t have enough data to figure it out.

The second event was in January, 2007 @ Andrew Baron’s house, which I have labeled as Rocketboom Party Photos. I don’t remember what the genesis of that party was, but I don’t believe I even had *MY* camera with me that night… Which shows how long ago it was, because I ALWAYS have my camera now. πŸ˜€

At some point, I saw Bre Pettis, whom I recognized from Jonny Goldstein’s show on Phovi.com, “Reinventing Television”. When I walked up to Bre, I introduced myself and started to explain something about myself (that I don’t remember) to him, and his reply was to look at me oddly, as if I had amnesia, and he said “…I know who you are”.

Now, this was somewhat shocking to me, because I considered myself a spectator of Jonny’s show. Until that very point in time, I hadn’t given a single second’s worth of thought to the possibility that people that I didn’t specifically personally solicit to check out my site might have done so. I CERTAINLY hadn’t considered that someone on a show might actually research members of the “studio audience” that were there in the text chat. Whatever the actual circumstances were, I never found out, because my mind was suddenly off on the tangent of “what’s really going on, here?”. I now had to consider my interactions on the net as TWO-WAY instead of one-way, like television. To me, that situation was as if I had walked up to Chow Yun-Fat and told him that I had seen his movie “Hard Boiled”, and he said “I know who you are”. Strange, yet fascinating, amazing and transformative all at the same time. πŸ™‚

Also at that party, I recognized Kenyatta Cheese. I had had a chat with him via blog comments over a quasi-contoversial topic, and I was aware that he had no idea what I looked like, but I knew what he looked like. I walked up to him and introduced myself, and he gave me this weird look, like “How come this guy I’ve never seen before is addressing me in a friendly manner?” I went on to bring up the blog comment conversation I had had with him, and his entire demeanor changed to one of recognition and acceptance. We went on to have an extended, IRL conversation about the blog post in question as well as peripheral topics that we most likely would never have gotten into in text comments.

I still didn’t “get it” after Drew’s party. I think I considered both the Bre and Kenyatta incidents to be easily explained away as isolated situations. I wasn’t getting that people were forming actual friendships and respect for each other that had never met each other IRL. I wasn’t getting that people were learning things about me that I didn’t tell them, because I posted it on the net and they read or watched it without telling me they did. I wasn’t getting that as opposed to selecting compatible people that are within our physical locations where we live, hang out or work, we now have the opportunity to interact… A. LOT…. with people with whom we share similar likes and interests that live ANYWHERE in the world.

I get it now… At least to the degree that I can write this post and wrap up my “Wasted Days” blog. What I get is that it’s not so strange… hehe well, to me at least! πŸ˜€ … to admire my friend across the country even though I’ve never met her IRL. It’s not uncommon to make friendships with people outside of one’s neighborhood, town, city, state, or even COUNTRY!

The Days aren’t Wasted just because I’m not in physical proximity to her. There are so many other ways that people communicate and get to know each other and build respect and create friendships and all formats of relationships that the only way your days are going to be wasted is if you aren’t figuring out what YOU want to do with your own life and your own time…. and DOING it! πŸ˜€


Fin.
Bill Cammack
2007Ò€¦ The Wasted Days
http://billcammack.com
http://reelsolid.tv

Bill Cammack GSX-R NYC Night
Photo Credit: Jay Batista