Yesterday I attended the ACM West conference in San Jose. Most of the attendees were from the Public Access community. One session I attended was on the topic of Youth Media, mainly with regard to camps, outreach programs and intern training through public access TV stations. i was struck by the community element, something I feel is missing in most of the competitive, fund-seeking world of Silicon Valley startups. But there are some really great programs out there, and some great volunteers and production professionals looking to share learning about video broadcasting. As example, the Youth Media session began with no moderation or leadership -- they actually didn't show up. So the group looked around, quickly and without question nominated a moderator and turned the session into a very productive roundtable discussion. I'm not sure that would happen as readily at a technology conference.
Later in the evening I met with a couple of people at a Halloween party thrown by my friend Brian Solis who is one of the organizers pulling together PodCamp West. They asked me to program the sessions and conference and to find sponsors. I guess I finally get to pull one together instead of critiquing other's events.