Mashcon11: The Revolution Will Not Be Televised. (It Will be Tweeted.)
Think of it like a Phish concert inside a Star Trek convention.
Was it a keynote? Performance Art? The Second Coming? All of the above? I’m not really sure, but the sight of Pete Cashmore addressing a throng of adoring (more on this in a bit) Mashers as MashCon11 opened was something to behold (and possibly something to fear, love or loathe.)
Disarmingly low key in jeans and a white shirt, Cashmore used his soft Scottish accent to review his story, the creation story of Mashable, and in fact the creation story of social media as we know it.
Very expected in an opening speech, right? Of course. And it was well said, too.
Unexpected were the live tweets projected behind him as he spoke. He was “socially” ogled, proposed to, and involuntarily had his hair auctioned for charity. This does not go on at the 4As.
It was clear that this was going to be a different show. Beyond the obvious style differences, there were many substantive differences worth noting.
Your actions speak so loudly I can’t hear what you’re saying.
Emerson said it. These folks live it. Their speed from concept to action is nothing short of head-snapping. It’s not just that their given medium is largely prose—often 140 characters or less. It’s more than that. They are by definition people of action. While many of us with more “traditional” backgrounds labor over copy or getting images just so, Mashers certainly follow the “perfect is the enemy of the good” mantra. They’re creating ten pieces in the time it takes us to do one. It’s not that their work isn’t good or is sloppy. It’s mainly good. It’s just much less filtered so they can get on to the next thing (which is never-endingly backlogged.)
Start. Don’t Join.
Many of us dreamed of joining that certain organization when we “grew up.” Most of us had that dream delayed right out of school, so we “worked our way up” at lesser stops on the way up the mountain. I see absolutely none of that with this group. They don’t want to join someone else’s team. They want to start their own. Or not be on a team at all, but be the best one-man-band out there. This is a fundamental shift. They don’t ask permission, “pay their dues,” or defer to their elders. They get busy. They are ballsy busy bees.Continued on the next page