At the same time it was good to notice that other people were adopting this format too and that many more conferences and seminars were becoming 'participative events'. Well once this new form of 'conference' is given a label then maybe its time has really come and so I was delighted to just read this posting of David Gammels on Unconferences.
This is how an "unconference" compares with a traditional "conference". I love it
Conference Unconference Attendees Participants Exhibitors Participants Recruiting speakers Recruiting participants Content planning Content facilitation Direct marketing Word of mouth marketing Handouts Wikis 12 month planning cycle 12 week planning cycle Sponsorships Donations Once a year As often as needed and desired Large budgets Shoe-string budgets Maximize value for organizers Maximize value for participants Best practices Innovation Top down Bottom up Wisdom of experts Wisdom of crowds Magazine coverage 2 months later Live blogging/podcasting Slides Stories Panels Conversations Best practices Practicing Hierarchy Networks Directive methods participatory methods Participants Contributors/creators Speakers Conversation starters Sharing information Learning collaboratively Instruction Discovery Best learning in the hallway It’s all hallway!