OK, actually I'm slogging through the end of Web 2.0 conference, waiting for the last hour of talks before it all ends. Slogging because one, I'm tired and two, this conference is run like a big TV show. I gave up TV a long time ago. I am sure I'm not the first to notice that at the conference arguably for and about user generated content, user relationships, and user ownership of the sites we visit, we are all herded into big rooms to listen to somebody else's conversations with little input. Without a doubt, there are lots of interesting people going across the stage with lots of interesting things to say. The hosts questions are all good. The high visibility of the guests and the companies they represent make it a real event too and justify the cost of the trip. As TV it is really well done.
When it gets down to it, I have been forever spoiled by the Open Space conferences I have been to recently in Crested Butte and various locations in Europe over the last couple of years. It's true that I was able to get some answers and some relationships that will be important or at least enjoyable in the months to come. Still, considering that the numbers of entrepreneurs and VC types were really high, because of the number of ideas still being heavily germinated would benefit by more talk between more people, I'd like to think that we the “users” would be better served by a modified format that embraced our input. I wonder how you do that with 1000 people? Quite a problem.