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Making Friends for the World to See – Thoughts on the 140 Conference

After an inspiring week in New York at Jeff Pulver’s 140 Characters Conference, I feel more empowered than ever about the “Power of Now,”  social media, and the authenticity of the friendships that have developed over the years through twitter and the real-time web.

When given the opportunity to meet people you have connected with IRL, it is a powerful gift which marries technology and friendship. It felt like I was a child at summer camp meeting new friends, bonding in a deep way, and then saying goodbye, wishing it wasn’t over.

After a gruelling trip back home to Los Angeles, I arrived feeling like a lost and weary traveler. It was at that moment, that I started humming the lyrics to the song by Elton John and Bernie Taupin entitled “Friends.” Although the song was released in 1970, it has now become my personal theme song from the 140 Conference in 2010.

Some of the highlights for me at the 140 conference (in no order of preference) included:

1.  A hug from MC Hammer @MCHammer at the VIP party the eve before day 1.

2. Being on the Stage at the 92nd Street Y on day 2 with Tom Miller @TomfooleryTM from Your Tango on the 1st-ever dating panel.

3. Cheering on my New York friend Andrea Syrtash @AndreaSyrtash on day 1 and extending the experience in our radio interview on Saturday

4. Chatting with speaker Mo Krochmal @Krochmal about education.

5. Meeting the elegant and eloquent Ann Curry @AnnCurry.

6. Seeing @GaryVee speak again for what he said would be his last time on stage. He’s gotten tired of life on the road.

7. Meeting New York tweeps at my book signing who have appeared on my #FF list with support from  Imal Wagner @ImalWagner.

8. Reconnecting IRL with Alexis Maybank @giltfounder before the fashion panel.

9. Crying during the Social Media for Social Good panel with @AdventureGirl @AutismSpeaks @Malaria_Envoy and tweeting on the spot to raise funds for these causes.

10. Meeting @Loehmanns and talking about my fashion tweets she saw during the Oscars.

11. Dining with @CateTV @Lori Moreno and others before meeting @Kelsey_Grammer at the Broadway Tweetup.

12. Having Kelsey Grammer personally send me a tweet before his performance at La Cage Aux Folles.

13. Playing with Silly Putty from my new friends at Answers.com.

14. Cherishing the first 140 Conference yearbook as a reminder of those I met during this powerful week.

15. Knowing that the 140 Conference Meet Up in Los Angeles is on May 10th and the 140 Conference returns to LA in October.

What is the theme throughout this message? It’s about friendship – Connecting,  Reconnecting, and creating memories together both online and offline. Whether you met back in the 70s or met for the first time on twitter, friendship is powerful. Friends now announce their engagements on twitter and facebook. Friends unite to support friends. We cheer on our friends when they are successful. We feel sad for their losses.  We send virtual happy birthday messages. We post obituaries online of those we love and will miss. We engage in a dynamic and powerful way, often in 140 characters or less.

Thank you @JeffPulver for bringing meaning to every element of our lives, through education, inspiration and friendship. All of the videos are now available for viewing by clicking on the watch this button on the agenda. I do hope you have the opportunity to view my panel, Experiencing: Love, Dating and Romance in the Real Time Web where we talked about the theme of authenticity. It was a joy to share my stories with you and to hear yours in return.

And now, with permission, the words to Friends, by Elton John and Bernie Taupin.

I hope the day will bring a lighter highway
For friends are found on every road
Can you ever think of any better way
For the lost and weary traveler to go?
Making friends for the world to see
Let the people know, you got what you need
With a friend at hand you will see the light
If your friends are there then everything’s alright
© 1970 Dick James Music Limited

About Julie Spira
Julie Spira is a social media expert and bestselling author. She works with individuals, businesses, and authors on creating their social media presence on the web.

  • hayes562@mail.ru

    Jeff Pulver’s 140 Characters Conference is really inspiring which feel more empowered than ever about the recent power like social media, and the authenticity of the friendships that have developed over the years through twitter and the real-time web. It gives the feelings of a child at summer camp meeting new friends, bonding in a deep way, and then saying goodbye, wishing it wasn’t over.


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