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SXSW 2011 Panel: What Exactly Are We Doing on the Web

posted by DL Byron on August 13, 2010

A social network problem is having a really great panel, but not wanting to annoy everyone by pitching it cause you find yourself annoyed by all the panel pitching. My approach this year is to assemble a great panel, write a description, submit it to the Panel Picker and hope it gets picked up on merit vs. a personal publicity campaign.

What Exactly Are We Doing on the Web

Nearly 20 years into this industry, one that we mostly just made up as we went along, it’s time to ask what exactly is our craft. What do we do and how well do we do it? We’ll ask questions about a professional ethos, our values, and ongoing growth from the early days to now and the future. We’d also like to point out a few things along the way, like how maybe it’s time for us to have a little red sports car.

There’s a lot going on with that panel. Yes it’s the “what do we do now with this web thing we made,” but much of it has to do with a lament and general feeling I found my peers having this year. A webhead, mid-life crisis and much of the discussions that led to this panel came from the Design the Ordinary talks I did this year, including the ones with with Kevin Tamura. In that talk, we questioned the state of web design and asked if it had become to decorative, ornanmental and driven by, well, the wrong drivers.

Much to discuss in What Exactly Are We Doing on the Web. Probably too much for one panel, but just as we did with the Try Making Yourself More Interesting panel from 2 years ago, maybe we’ll fill the big hall with our peers discussing relevant, contextual topics. I know it’s on my mind and the minds of the people I chat with daily.

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