BookCamp Halifax (#bchfx10): The Value of Community

I attended and moderated a session at BookCamp Halifax 2010 this past weekend. As per usual I left feeling like my brain was exploding with new ideas, but instead of writing a session recap, I want to focus on why I think this BookCamp was successful.

If you want to check out videos of the sessions from BookCamp Halifax 2010, head over to

I started off the day with a session on online communities with Kimberly Walsh and Eric Rountree. At some point, someone made the statement that: if you treat the book like a social object, the community will figure out what it wants to do with it. I think that really set the tone for the day and we, the community, took it and ran with it.

At some point, every one of the organizers came up to me and apologetically said something about the unconference being small, and that they hoped for more people next year but that’s not the point! It doesn’t matter what size the unconference, what matters is that every single person there felt like they were part of a community no matter their age, location, or professional background.

I think it was that sense of communitythat sense of belongingthat made everyone feel comfortable enough to share their experience and opinions, both professionally and personally. The audience members totally hijacked the sessions, but that’s exactly what I wanted to see happen. Session moderators only did the introduction, then ideas bounced around the room for an hour until we had to cut people off. It was fantastic.

Great work to all of the organizers: Kimberly Walsh , Ryan Jones , Robbie MacGregor , and Eric Rountree . And a big thank you to all of the attendeesyou made it your own and I’m glad I could be a part of it.