The thing I find most interesting about a blog conference with a pretty heavy focus on networking, such as Blogopolis (which I will be attending on Saturday), is this:
How many people are the people on the outside that they are online?
I'm not talking about anything freaky, pretending, faking, law-breaking or any of that stuff. But I know that I write reasonably instinctively how I think without worrying too much about it. I do self-edit on my blog more than I do in emails to friends etc, but essentially I write how I think.
However, I do not SPEAK how I think.
So I am really not quite the same person on the outside. Or at least, I am a lot less likely to be, in real life, meeting new people, the same 'voice' as I am online. Now I don't expect to meet any of my blog readers on Saturday, except for a handful of friends I hope to catch up with, so I feel safely anonymous in that way. But having read that there is enforced allocated seating, to prevent any forming of familiar groups and possible exclusion of individuals, and to foster maximum networking opportunities and all that jazz, totally freaked me out! Don't get me wrong, I think it's a very smart idea, and a good idea, and makes sense. But it puts me well outside of my comfort zone, that's for sure.
So I might just be a tad tiny bit shy at blogopolis. I will also be at the pre-conference drinks and don't expect to be quite as shy at a bar with a couple of friends nearby, but even so. Time to suck it up, and see how I go. If all else fails I will hide behind my camera. Actually, I will probably do that regardless. But I promise I will be nice if anyone says hello ;)
And if I'm accidentally sarcastic, please don't be offended. It means I like you.