Febrero 19, 2005

Indy Conference part 2

I'm sitting in Mojo's cafe as other IMCistas hang a sheet to prepare for screening indymedia videos. This is a wonderful environment. I like Austin a lot. The only problem is that the weather has been pretty much exactly like Portland for the last 3 days. Only a little warmer. Anyway, before I babble on I should refer you to the other blogger who has been writing about the conference, the very smart and knowledgable Chris Anderson of New York City's IMC.
He's written a few very thoughtful entries about the conference on the Indypendent blog.

Chris was actually supposed to be facilitator for one of the workshops at 10 am this morning, but he was late because his ride slept in... It turns out that many conference attendees stayed up till 5 or 7 this morning. (I myself decided to catch up on sleep, since sleeping on a stone floor for 2 weeks in Tucson has reduced my immune system.)

Anyway, the session Chris was supposed to lead was about Blogging and Indymedia. I recorded audio of it, but I have yet to encode it. The discussion was extremely interesting and we batted around several URLs and ideas.

Over lunch I met with Bill Conroy, who writes for Narco News Bulletin. In fact, he just wrote a new article about the 'House of Death' in Juarez. Anyway, he drove up from San Antonio, partially to visit his daughter who is attending UT-Austin, but also to give me an interview for my Juarez documentary. He offered some great insights on the Drug War and corruption, and I'm really happy that I got to talk to him, and I'm very happy with how the documentary now is shaping up. I look forward to hunkering down for the next month and getting most of it edited.

Umm, anyway, the IndyConference is really great. I don't know how to really meaningfully write about it write now as it's still happening, other than to simply list the events. So anyway, after the interview with Bill, we went to get coffee and ran into the New Mexico IMC folks, who I met in Albuquerque back in November. They were with some Talahassee IMC guys. We chatted for a bit and then went over to the auditorium to see Amy Goodman from Democracy Now give her keynote speech.

It was great and moving seeing her speak, but I felt a bit like how I often feel, and that is that there was a lot of preaching to the choir going on. Her talk was not really focused on Indymedia in any way, it seemed to be her standard talk about how important independent media is. Which is great, but like, hey, we already know how important it is. I didn't know her Sally Jesse story, or her story about almost being killed in East Timor in the 70s. But although all that stuff was great, what I really wanted to hear was her specific thoughts about the Indpendent Media Center. How does it complement what Democracy Now is doing? What strengths and weaknesses does she see in it? Where should it go? These are the kinds of questions that her presence at an Indymedia Conference should address, not her schpiel she gives to middle american moderate liberals.

Anyway, next were more workshops. I went to a 2-hour session about IMC Video that was very useful. I took lots of notes and I plan to post those on the wiki soon, which is on the docs.indymedia.org site. Then I went to a little of the "how to do a mobilization," and then a little of the "underserved communities" workshop, but then I had to play hookie again and go see my friend's band Brekekekoaxkoax, a sort of free improv experimental quartet that was playing across town.

And now I'm here, watching IMC videos. Fun!

More later...

Posted by steev at Febrero 19, 2005 09:45 PM