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It’s day one of Le Web 3. So let’s start with the good. One Thousand people from around the world have converged on Paris. Loic and his team have worked really hard to pull together an impressive list of speakers, sponsors and attendees.
Everyone I spoke to last night at the warm up party is hoping the event will live up to the billing and better last years excellent event.
The bad: The speakers are all saying the same old thing and nothing new. Loic’s interview of Niklas Zennström, Founder Skype and Kazaa was certainly not going to worry Jeremy Paxman. As for Lorraine Twohill, Marketing Director EMEA Google, thanks for the internet history lesson and the insight that social networks are big news!?
The rest of the day was fairly bland with one or two speakers standing out. Danny Rimer (Index Ventures), Hans Rosling (Gapminder) and Tristan Nitot (Mozilla Europe). Like too many web conferences of late, the better conversations occurred outside of the conference program during the lunch and coffee breaks.
The ugly: The wifi for the event did not work and this has annoyed many people. Equally there is no backchannel this year and the speakers could have done with the audience feedback to make them a little sharper and more insightful.
Overall the event feels like it has run its course just like the Web 2.0 conference earlier this year. Le Web 4 will be a hard sell, certainly as far as I am concerned. The statement repeated often and frequenty by people I spoke with – “it’s very corporate this year”. The question is how big can an event go before it loses its soul and raison d’etre?
I am off to the party tonight and will update this post after. Tomorrow hopefully will be better?
Update: The party was great fun, thank you Netvibes. Photos to follow.