Open Sesame (to Open09)
The other week I wandered into a nightclub at 10 in the morning, poured myself a cup of tea and discussed the future of journalism for two hours.
Just another wacky morning in my life as a serial conference dweller.
This one was Open09 and it was aimed at discussing the future of the digital and creative sectors.
It was billed as ‘breaking the normal conference model’ by creating a ‘new participatory experience to explore, inform and create…’
I could go on but you might become as confused as me. Though probably not attended by as many bodies as the organisers had hoped, there was a diverse range of professions represented by the 15 people who attended.
The subsequent debate at Preston’s 53degrees student venue answered specific industry questions such as (and I paraphrase) ‘Who will fund the freelancers of the future?’ It was enthusiastically debated. We had to write our answers down on big sheets of paper.
Run by the University of Central Lancashire, Open09 seemed to be of more value to the professors than people like me taking part. There is no doubt in my mind that the opinions of those actually working in journalism, photography, multi-media or the BBC are important in realising how the industry is already fragmenting and developing.
What did I take from it? Probably what I knew already: If you’re not working for the BBC you could slip away in a tidal wave of cuts and closures. I also learned a new word, churnalism, which I quite like.