BlogHer ’09: “There’s so much power in this room.”

For some, a ballroom crowded with several hundred bright, accomplished and outgoing women might be a scary place.  A conference with close to 1,500 women with opinions and blogs is probably even more frightening!  But as we juggled our glasses of wine and tried to make conversation over the din at the first night of the BlogHer ’09 conference, one wise woman turned and said to me, “There’s so much power in this room.”

It was the way she said it that struck me — part in astonishment that so much female potential to be harnessed could be in one place, but there was also a tinge of sadness that sort of said, “Why aren’t we doing something with all this power besides waiting for the swag bags?”

Obviously, there’s more to a blogging conference than the parties and the goodies, but it is a fair question — what could we do to grab an opportunity where so many women gather?  How can we  make an impact or, even, start a movement?

The list of big and small things goes on forever.  Kim of Hormone-Colored Days has called for conference goers to save their unused hotel toiletries for a women’s shelter.   On a bigger scale, the question is being asked today by Veronica and others – what do politics mean to women in a post-Sarah Palin world?  (Is it even possible to imagine a post-Sarah Palin world!)  And the beginning of a movement is underway to take back the integrity with which many of us write, even though there are some who suggest that we are nothing more than product promoters.

It is good to pause and focus on what else we can be doing with this accumulation of power.  We’re so much more than the sum of our blogs.  If we each take a moment to step away from the swag and the cocktails to think about what we could do to contribute to our communities, both online and off, we can take the next steps toward “world domination.”  And I know we’ll be able to do it so skillfully, that the current powers that be will never even notice!

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10 Responses to “BlogHer ’09: “There’s so much power in this room.””

  1. Donna Says:

    Glad you are there to add to all that power (and so wish I could be there with you!) Enjoy!

  2. annie Says:

    There’s more to women blogging than product pimping and swag? Who knew?

    But it’s a good question and one I don’t think has been addressed by the larger XXblogosphere.

  3. Daisy Says:

    “There’s so much power in this room.” I was attending an alumni “tea” for my sorority (gulp, yes, I was a Greek geek) and my friend and I said almost the same thing: “Wow, we’re among the movers and shakers here!” The local United Way chair, the woman who had organized the building of an accessible playground, several local teachers… we realized then that we’d pledged our membership not to a giggling batch of partiers, but to a group of amazing women.

  4. Myrna Says:

    Listening to Tina Brown this morning. She commented several times about the power and the clarity of the voices of the women in the room. She evened stated that she will be reaching out to several writers for the Daily Beast. All three of the panelists evidently spent a great deal of time here listening. Quite a statement that is one way of confirmation of your statement.

  5. Rebecca Self Says:

    Nice to meet you last night in the Shutter Suite! I don’t usually write about politics in my personal blog, but thought you and your readers might enjoy a post I wrote today. It was prompted by the food at BlogHer… sponsored as it was by giant conglomerates: http://www.xpatadventures.com/we-are-what-we-eat

  6. Asianmommy Says:

    I’m so sorry that we didn’t get a chance to meet this year. Hope to see you in NY next year!

  7. LindaLowen Says:

    Amen, sistah! But you’re preaching to the choir with me. It was my first BlogHer, so I found it a little overwhelming. The one social action workshop I attended (with the amazing Gina MacCauley) proved that one woman can affect extraordinary change. I wish more of this existed at BlogHer — that this was a priority instead of the other stuff. Thanks for speaking your truth, which is mine…and many others, I suspect.

  8. Corina Says:

    Power. Something that we need to be careful not to swindle. I did not attend BlogHer, but we have seen the good that this community can do. Time to refocus, regroup, re-purpose, and use our power for good.

  9. WhyMommy Says:

    Absolutely.

    100%.

    We do have power, and we need to be careful in what we say is important.


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