Image by Ben Sutherland via Flickr
I spent Saturday at the second Western Mass Pod Camp at Westfield State College. A pod camp, for those of you who are unaware, is a gathering where people come together to learn about social media. As a person who has been blogging since 2003 and heavily involved in social media for a couple of years, I have to admit I was skeptical that there was much for me to learn. But I am here to happily report just how wrong I was.
Most of all I learned new tricks and techniques that I was able to apply immediately. I learned from Steve Garfield, for instance that I can download Qik on the iPhone for just $1.99 and capture video using the still camera on my old iPhone 3G. I learned from Christine Pilch that I could save my LinkedIn profile as a PDF, something I didn't know was possible. I found out about functionality like polls and announcements. I use LinkedIn all the time, but like everyone else, I use what I use and I don't pay attention to the rest.
As I was talking to one of the organizers, Morriss Partee, he pointed out how important it was for people to meet each other in this fashion. We all socialize with one another online, but too rarely meet each other in real life. Gatherings like Western Mass Pod Camp give people the opportunity to meet one another and make concrete business connections. We need to get out from behind our desks from time to time and see the people we spend so much time with virtually because there is so much to know and so much to learn. And no matter how much you think you know, there is always more.
I'm thrilled I took the opportunity to spend my Saturday with these people, and I highly recommend it. You'll be surprised what you'll discover.