SXSW report Card. What no progress report?

It’s pretty late, but I just sucked back a few RedBulls so I’m a little awake and want to do something to get rid of the extra caffeine in my body. Hello blog!

For those of you trying to decide whether or not you should have attended SXSW 2007 or 2008, here is a brief score card for the event.

Host City: A+
Austin is a beautiful city with some of the hippest bars, most eclectic nightlife and  wonderful quaint restaurants. Austin is so also so welcoming with the most amazing people who are ready to share their favorite bar or tell you a story about their life. While it rained heavily on Sunday night and sprinkled on Monday night, Austin’s spring was a perfect escape from the not cold enough to be winter-not warm enough to be spring mix in DC. Good thing I got a scarf from the Blogger event.

Accommodations: A
We’re staying at the Hyatt on S. Congress. A bit of a schlep from the convention center, but a pretty hotel with room for plenty. Here’s a hint, after the convention, tell the Hilton or the Courtyard Marriot people that you are staying with them, but don’t want to go back to your room. Ask the hotel’s clerk if they can check your bag. I did it tonight and it was the best decision I made all night. Dropped off my bag at 8 and picked it up at 2.

Panels: B
The panels were entertaining and informative, but left a lot to be desired. Some panels were too top level for their title. For example, the Lonelygirl15 panel on Sunday could have been a lot better. After all the topic was about the behind the scenes of lonelygirl15. The problem was 85 percent of the room had never heard of lonelygirl15. So the creators of the show had to spend 30 of the 55 minutes explaining what the show was. This was a 101 lesson and wasn’t intended for the crowd that should have been in that room.

Hallways: A+
There were some great people at the event. And everyone was so friendly. It was great to see the lonelygirl creators talk to Andrew Baron of Rocketboom. I got to meet <a href=”http://www.abcnews.com/amanda”>Amanda Congdon</a> for the first time. I spoke with Ze Frank and became close with Zadi Diaz and her husband Steve of the JetSet show. Steve Garfield one of the first videobloggers was there. He’s so nice. I got to meet a ton of people, talk them up and hopefully do some business with some of them in the near future.

Parties: A
Some of the parties were hit or miss. The Fox Party at Six on 4th and Colorado was nice, but was kind of lame. It was Fox’s party, but there was nothing to tell you what that meant. Fox’s party must have been MySpace, etc. But there were no signs, no swag. Nothing. I did get to drink a few beers on Rupert Murdoch and that makes me happy. I then got to go to a bunch of great parties including the Blogger party, Rocketboom’s party Austinist’s party at Pure Volume, the Tejas2007 party at Pure Volume, a few lame parties at Lucky and one at Karma Lounge where a guy dressed as a pirate tried arguing about the war.
However, the best arty of all was BlogAds party at Austin City Limits. I still can’t get over the band, the location, the people, the excitement and the fun. It was hard to get there: It was pouring, my cab driver didn’t know where to go (neither did the 3 other cabs that kept circling around the UT landmark). But once we found it, it was an unreal experience that I hope to live again. Plus my cab driver was the best guy ever!

Well that’s it from the conference. I can’t wait for SXSW 2008. I hope you give me your feedback for 2007 and make it back out here for 2008!

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