Tag Archives: leweb

Use Freelancers to Create a Facebook Killer

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This video features Matt Barie, CEO of Freelancer, the world’s largest online freelancing portal. If you have an idea to create a competitor to Facebook, Twitter, Wikipedia or Google, but you lack the programming talent, you can still do like Kevin Rose did to start Digg.com, what Steve Jobs did to start Apple and what Bill Gates did to start Microsoft – you can just have someone else do all the programming work for you for cheap! Now that we have the Internet, why not hire someone to do it for those $500 or so that you have been saving up?

The potential for building your ideas by worldwide freelancers is huge, but this is also a functionality that needs to connect worldwide freelancers with the companies and idea people who want to build new tools and apps on the web. This is outsourcing of programming and any other remote work you can think of, among thousands of categories of work. If you have some idea, but you don’t have the programming skills to create your idea, consider checking out freelancer.com and sites like it to get the job done.

What do you think about globalized online freelancing? Have you used it?

This video was filmed by Charbax at LeWeb 2010 in Paris

LeWeb 2009: Building Communities

When Loic Le Meur asked me last year to come to Paris and speak at his LeWeb Conference, I admit to being honored beyond belief. LeWeb is one of the premiere conferences anywhere in the world, and it’s held in beautiful Paris. When I found out that Queen Rania Al Abdullah was also speaking, I broke out into a cold sweat. This was serious business, folks. The people who attend this event are hard-core. They are THE movers and shakers in our world. They are smart – passionate – dedicated. Loic is their leader, and I hoped only to make an impact on the crowd in some small way.

Loic asked me to speak about building communities, something which I have been doing online since 1992. This is where my passion lies. This is what I am dedicated to. I walked onto the stage with the hope that the things I have learned along the way would help someone in their journey. I became so filled with the enthusiasm around me that I walked off that stage with my head held high. I feel as though I gave one of the best presentations of my life… not because someone told me so, but because I know that I believed in everything I said.

When you are going to speak to an audience – no matter how large or small – don’t talk at them. Talk WITH them. Yes, you need to tell them whatever it is you know. Of course you’re going to try to win them over to your side. But you still have to actually have a conversation with them… much as you do when you are trying to build a community.

Community comes from inside of you. The tools and platforms available are simply that: tools and platforms. They are not the community. Bring people together and give them the tools to connect to each other and then watch as leaders emerge from within. Talk to them. Work with them. Learn about them and grow with them.

Remember that building a community is not about connecting people to you. It’s about connecting them to each other.

Building Community From LeWeb 2009

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I’ve been online since 1992, and in an official business capacity in 1996. I’m just me… someone who loves gadgets, technology and communicating. I have always believed that community exists inside of all of us. Wherever we go, our community goes.

If you’re familiar with a Venn Diagram, you’ll understand what I’m about to tell you. It involves circles that cross over at points. There are many facets to the person who is me. Where I live is one circle. The fact that I love coffee is another circle. You’ll have to imagine where those two intersect. There are many pieces of me. So, wherever I go, I will look for people I can identify with. That’s where community is. It’s within me, and wherever I go… community goes. The same holds true for all of you.

Over the years I’ve seen many business models come and go, where they claim they’re going to create a community. That doesn’t happen. You cannot create a community. It’s organic and creates itself. No matter what tools you use, the community will grow. It’s all about the culture around it. It’s the culture that surrounds companies and products that will endure. That’s what builds the community, not the product or service itself.

The things we care about the most don’t only exist on one site. We are spread out all over the place. We don’t have to only hang in one place to feel that sense of belonging… we take our community with us wherever we go.

Community requires a tool that can’t be built – our spirit. We can throw tools online. But if you believe that a community is a tool… then you, yourself, are a tool. It’s what you DO with the tools that counts. The people who show up are the community. A community isn’t a blog, nor a Wiki. It’s all about the people involved, and their spirit.

WE are the community, not the developers who make the tools that allow us to interact!

When you look at the blogs that have “made it”, WHY did they make it? It’s because the person or team driving the blog had something unique to say, in a way that made people sit up and take notice. People’s voices are not a commodity.

How do YOU define community?

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Should Twitter be Banned at Conferences?

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I was fortunate to be a keynote speaker last week at the LeWeb conference in Paris. It was definitely an amazingly well put-together conference. I cannot express enough gratitude to Loic and Geraldine for making us all more than comfortable during our stay. I did happen to notice one thing during the conference that bothered me a bit, so I decided I wanted to talk to you about it. Twitter tends to play a large role during conferences. However, I’m not so sure it’s a good thing.

Let’s face it – if someone is a presenter at a conference, they are there for a reason. The conference organizers invited them there to talk to you about something they felt you should hear. The day I spoke at LeWeb, there were several heavy-hitters who went before me that morning. These were dev-centric presentations, from people at Twitter and Facebook. My speech was less tangible, and more of something to really make you think about what exactly community is.

Not everyone in the audience was interested in what I had to say. That’s fine, I assumed that would be the case. You cannot make everyone happy. During the rest of the weekend, I noticed that many of the people in the audience were busy on Twitter. I also happened to realize that much of what was being said was negative, and sometimes even harsh.

The problem with people using Twitter during a presentation is that they are paying more attention to the voice that is in their head than they are to the voice on the stage. There’s a reason the voice is on stage, remember? I’m not sure what prompts people to not want to listen to a particular presentation. But I feel that if you don’t have something nice to say – then you should say nothing at all. People need to learn how to be negative properly.

We need to remember it’s not about us… it’s about the person on stage. Twitter almost takes away from the person on stage, more than it enhances it. People, again, are more interested in themselves than the speaker. If you aren’t interested in a paritcular speech, that’s ok! Just walk on out of the room and do something else. There’s always something else going on during conferences.

I can’t help but thinking Twitter needs to take a backseat when it comes to conference presentations. I’ve seen it detract too many times. Too much negativity can swell, and cause problems. It may be the thought of the crowd, but sometimes it’s ok to keep your thoughts to yourself. There are a lot of important people in the audience, yes. However, the person on stage is the most important one of all.

Those are my thoughts on the matter. It’s your turn. What do you think?

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Are We Really Creating Social Change?

During the LeWeb conference yesterday, Queen Rania of Jordan was one of the featured speakers. If you aren’t familiar with who she is, you are probably wondering why she was a speaker at a technology and social media conference. Before I explain what she talked about – I have to say that she was one of the best and most motivational speakers I’ve had the pleasure of watching in a very long time. She is definitely one amazing lady.

Her Highness spoke about social networking, and asking if we are truly using it for creating social change. She touched on the fact that while we jump on the bandwagon to tweet and blog about important political and cultural situations – we are just as fast to switch gears and discuss celebrities. With that being the case, how, then are we really working towards any type of change for the better?

When we drop something important that could truly make a difference in favor of the hottest new gossip, we are dropping the ball on humanity. Queen Rania asked us to join her on One Day, One Goal. The concept is simple, but could have an amazing impact. Even if you have a cause you’d rather favor than education, you can still participate. Set aside one day to focus on one goal. Tweet and blog your heart out. Pour your passion into what it is you believe strongly in. Dedicate yourself to that goal for the day.

It’s time we stop sitting on our proverbial asses, talking about change. It’s time we actually get up and DO something about it.

Even though Queen Rania was very powerful in her presentation, we have community members right here at home who post amazing things every day. All of you discuss what is important to you, what you believe in, and what you feel is interesting to the rest of us. Keep up the great work!

I hope you took the time today to check out our downloads page. It’s like the box of chocolates that Forrest Gump loves so much – you never know what you get until…

Paris, France Tips

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Next week will be my first time to visit France! I am going to be the Keynote speaker for the LeWeb Conference. There are over 1800 people registered for this particular conference, and the speaker lineup is astounding. I am honored to have been asked to speak at LeWeb – but I’m nervous, as well!

As I said, I’ve never been to France. I also don’t really speak a single word of French! I feel overwhelmed at the thought of trying to get around. I feel lost already, trying to figure out where I should go, what I should see, and what I need to do!

What suggestions do you have? I’ve already gotten several good ideas. Keep them coming!

If you’ve never been to Paris, what would you want to do if you were to get to go?!

[awsbullet:paris france travel guide]

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