SXSW 2007 – Ghost in the Machine

So, I did my first South by SouthWest this year. Not my last, I hope, but not running back either. Was on a panel called Ghost in the Machine: Spirituality Online. The festival itself has 3 parts, film, music, and interactive, which is where our panel was. Very tech heavy, very interesting, but a bit out of my league. Nonetheless, everyone is very friendly, people wanted to learn and to talk, and overall it was a great experience. On the panel were:

James McNally – moderator – Consolation Champs

Rachel BarenblatVelveteen Rabbi (SXSW post)

Keven Lawver UltraNormal (SXSW post)

Gordon AtkinsonReal Live Preacher

Had a great question from the audience, I think it was from Kevin Smokler, that caused me to answer that I blog about religion, not faith. I am an academic. I am activist. I do the work of faith. I talk about faith within my community. I blog about religion, although I think my faith comes through. I think I might have to do a better post on this point.

Prior to the panel, went to lunch with all the panelists and Gordon’s wife Jeanene (apologies for misspellings). Great conversation about why and how we blog, some of which we turned to soundbites for the panel, that will eventually get podcasted. Also, discovered through Gordon, the real, deep conversations people are willing to have about faith, not religion, with people they haven’t met, because it’s safe.

After our panel, went to dinner with the same group and about 20 other people. Talked AOL business, did lots of consulting. Important business dinner. Immediately followed by an ice cream run, where I discovered Mexican Vanilla ice cream. Yummy. Kevin Smokler was with us, and convinced a large number of people to do a bit of performance art in the middle of a rather busy road. I passed. I have two kids and I don’t drink. Kevin Lawver was kind enough to post a video of said event.

Out of panel discussions were fantastic, and I suppose that’s true for any conference. Religion is clearly not a big thing here, but I think it could be, and I wouldn’t mind coming back and doing something else on the topic.

Technorati Tags:

One thought on “SXSW 2007 – Ghost in the Machine

  1. Out of panel conversations were fantastic, weren’t they? I feel like in the end the conference itself is almost incidental; it’s the long delicious mealtimes that I will remember.
    I’m interested in the distinction you draw between blogging faith and blogging religion, so if you write more about that, I am all ears. 🙂
    I agree that religion isn’t a big thing at this conference, but there definitely seemed to be interest; I could imagine doing something else around similar themes at some point. Meanwhile, I’m glad you are home safe & sound!

Comments are closed.