Ticket Update: Approximately 30% of the 150 paid-for BlogPotomac seats have already been sold since tickets officially went on sale two weeks ago. At the current pace, BlogPotomac (June 12 at the State Theatre in Falls Church) will be sold out by April 1. Don’t miss out, register today! Any profits from BlogPotomac 2009 will be donated to DC Central Kitchen.
Last week’s announcement that Jen McClure, executive director of the Society for New Communications Research (SNCR), was going to keynote the BlogPotomac speakers dinner on June 11, marked an important milestone. Jen rounded out a great lineup of speakers, half of which are women. The fifty percent ratio of women-to-men makes this industry unconference unusual.
Before I explain, let me give a hat tip to the other women speaking:
- Co-Emcee Debbie Weil
- SOBCon Organizer and Successful Blog Author Liz Strauss
- Ace Political Blogger Shireen Mitchell
- Radian 6’s Amber Naslund
Most social media and internet marketing conferences are dominated by male speakers. This is particularly difficult to understand given that a majority of industry communicators are in actuality women. The same disturbing trend occurs in the PR and marketing blogosphere. Less than 10 of the Ad Age top 50 ranked blogs are written by women. Heck, even in our society, women still get paid 79 cents to the dollar.
I don’t understand the sociological reasons for continuing this historical glass ceiling (image: Women of the World by angela7dreams). The dynamics are beyond me, but in designing BlogPotomac’s speaker line-up there has been a conscious effort to avoid this disturbing trend. Last year we attained a 40 percent female speaker ratio (thanks again to Debbie, Maggie Fox, K.D. Paine and Kami Huyse), and this year we are at 50 percent. It’s my intent to keep it that way.
I’m highlighting this issue intentionally. I think a lot of this is subconscious, but if we don’t consciously think about it, the trend won’t change. There are more than enough qualified, experienced female speakers that deserve to be linked to, and should share the limelight with men. We’re doing that here, I hope you’ll join us.
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