10 Things You WON’T Learn at PodCamp Pittsburgh

Three years ago, Pittsburgh became the second city (after Boston) to host a PodCamp.  Now, with PodCamp Pittsburgh 4 happening this weekend, I’m proud to announce that the event I helped to create has just sold out for the first time.*  But by “sell out,” I mean in terms of capacity, not ethics.

As you may have noticed recently, I have a big problem with people exploiting social media channels (as well as exploiting people) to make money and build reputations through dishonesty.  The basic tenet of social media is that “your voice matters.”  But, at the risk of coming off like an elitist prick, I’ll add one caveat to that statement: “Your voice matters as long as you’re not a valueless asshole.”

Hence, if we’ve done our jobs as organizers properly, here are 10 Things You WON’T Be Learning at PodCamp Pittsburgh 4:

  • Hate Speech: The Internet Makes It Easy!
  • How to Be an Anonymous Racist Douchebag
  • Sexism: It’s Okay!
  • How to Steal Other People’s Work for Fun and Profit
  • Why You Should Join a Multi-Level Marketing Scheme
  • Death Panels Aren’t So Bad: Why Old People Don’t Belong Online
  • How to Organize a Fringe Group Militia Using LinkedIn
  • Gaming the System for Numbers So You Can Feel Loved
  • Who Needs Literacy When You Can Have a Blog Instead?
  • Stalking Your Ex: How Social Media Can Bring You Together (Again)

Granted, PodCamp Pittsburgh is an open-source “un-conference,” which means people can sign up to host whatever sessions they’d like.  But we do have a quality control process in place that’s meant to ensure two things:

  • The people who are speaking know something about their topic, and
  • Their topic won’t do more harm to the world than good.

If you feel we’ve failed in our mission to weed out the bastards, let us know.  It won’t happen again.

Thanks for caring, and I’ll see [some of] you at PodCamp.  (And if your socializing skills need a jumpstart, fear not: just remember this.)

*  Technically, because non-VIP tickets to PCPGH4 are free, people can still attend as walk-ins.  But since The Art Institute of Pittsburgh does have a maximum capacity of 500, and since all 500 spots have been claimed, this event is a “sell out.”  Get cozy.