A Tale of Two Conventions

About six weeks ago I had to make a decision whether to apply for press credentials to attend the Democratic National Convention in Boston or whether to take some time off, travel to Oregon and attend the O’Reilly Open Source Convention. Both the conventions started today and end later this week. I made the decision to avoid the political geeks and hang out with a differnet kind of geek instead.

It’s not that I couldn’t attend the DNC Convention if I had wanted to go. I’m confident that my credentials would have been approved. A little known fact is that I was in Boston in early May talking to the DNCC about building a network of blogs and online communities for the delegates and journalists attending. They ultimately decided the cost and timeframe were not feasible, and instead opened up the Convention to bloggers: a decision that has been widely praised and reported.

I also am realizing that one of the reasons I skipped the DNC Convention is that I was completely burned out on politics and wanted a break. After my consulting gig at the John Kerry campaign and dealing with the ingrained politics of D.C., I knew that I wanted to dis-engage from that world and focus on something else. Ironically enough, I keep getting pulled back into web-based political projects. In June, I designed the DraftBruce.com site, a grassroots campaign to convince Bruce Springsteen to play a concert at Giants Stadium on the same day George W. Bush accepts the RNC nomination. Last week, I helped build a web site for a new PAC called the Fight Back Fund whose first project is Win The Senate, a web site that asks people to donate to Senate campaigns. This is very important because even if John Kerry wins the election, the Democrats are still in danger of losing Senate seats to the Republicans.

Since I’m covering the Open Source Convention as a blogger/journalist, I will be reporting my observations here on a daily basis. This morning I wanted to sit in Matt Seargent’s “Stop Spamming Me” tutorial but there were no seats left. So I’m now in a session called “Learning Perl Objects, References and Modules” which unfortunately is way over my head.

Posted by Cameron Barrett at July 26, 2004 01:58 PM

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