Laurin and Nancy at the social media symposium

Laurin is presenting, Nancy is going over her notes, and I'm trying to think up some mayhem that will get me sent to the principal's office. Just like school.

Last night, I participated in a symposium on politics and social media at Francis Marion University. Which was great. Trouble is, I was on a panel with Laurin Manning and Nancy Mace. And they were better prepared than I was.

See, I thought it was going to be just a panel discussion, so I had jotted some notes about points I wanted to be sure to hit on, and showed up. Laurin and Nancy had slide shows, and got up and made presentations. So I had to, too. No problem, really, because I can fill any amount of time… I talked about the old blog and why I started it and how it related to my old MSM job, and the new blog and how it’s going, my Twitter feed (dang! I forgot to mention I’m one of the Twitterati!), how I hate Facebook (it’s the AOL of this decade), “Seinfeld,” my Top Five Baseball Movies, and I don’t know what all.

Then at some point, I realized I’d gone on enough, or more than enough, and shut up. Which I think was cool, but it was way less polished than what the other panelists did.

You know how, when you were in school, there were these girls (and sometimes traitor guys) who always showed up with their homework done? And raised their hands and asked for more work, for extra credit? And when the teacher had been out of the room, and came back, they told her what you had been doing while she was gone? It was like that. Laurin and Nancy were good.

But I survived to the actual panel discussion part, and that went well (I think), so all’s well that ends that way. As it happened, I enjoyed it.

I especially enjoyed learning from Laurin and Nancy.

Laurin was sort of a mentor for me when I started blogging in 2005, and she was well established with the legendary Laurinline. She later was part of the unstoppable Obama social media machine of 2008. Recently, she’s blogged at SC Soapbox.

Nancy, the first female to graduate from The Citadel (how’s that for intimidating?), is founder and CEO of The Mace Group, LLC. She’s also partners with Will Folks in FITSNews— she does the technical side, and leaves the content to Will.

I’m not going to share with you all the cool trade secrets they imparted, because knowledge is power, and I want it all to myself. But I will share this anecdote that they told us about:

You know how Will started his blog? By accident. He was actually trying to post a comment on the Laurinline, and got so confused in trying to do so that he inadvertently set up a blog of his own. Really. That’s the way Laurin and Nancy tell it. The site is much more technologically sophisticated now with Nancy involved, and has more than a million page views a month — compared to my measly traffic, which has only broken a quarter of a million a couple of times. (That’s it. That was my display of humility for this month.)

Anyway, that’s why I was in Florence.

10 thoughts on “Laurin and Nancy at the social media symposium

  1. Bart

    Laurinline was one of the very best blogs to ever grace the internet. Laurin Manning had a way about her and she handled everyone with in an even handed manner. Not once do I remember her making light of another person’s politics. If she didn’t agree, she did so with grace and made her points without resorting to some of the usual trashing of opposing opinions.

    When she turned it over to someone else, it lost it’s character and lapsed into irrelevance within a few weeks.

  2. Brad

    Did you wear your platties of the night?

    Maybe I should start a blog written entirely in Nadsat. But then, who would know what I was govoreeting about, oh my brothers? All the vecks and ptitsas here would think I’d gotten into the moloko plus and gone bezoomny.

  3. Brad

    You have any idea how hard it is to type like that on an iPhone, which keeps “correcting” your typing before you can finish a word?

  4. Burl Burlingame

    That’s funny, I did a presentation last night too, but I wager mine was more fun. At the Honolulu Academy of Arts I hosted before, and led a 45-minute audience discussion after, of a screening of the restored Kubrick “A Clockwork Orange.” It was real horrorshow, my droogies.

  5. Nancy


    Pleasure to finally meet your acquaintance last night, and of course Laurin too. You did great. Now do not impart those trade secrets we discussed! 😉

  6. Kathryn Fenner

    Facebook may be the AOL of the decade, but my friends are on it and I can write whatever I need to say w/o artificial character caps. I guess most of my friends have longer attention spans…..

  7. Ralph Hightower

    Sunday, September 18, 2011, I started watching ESA (European Space Agency) and DLR (Germany’s space agency; don’t ask me what DLR is, ask them), host their first tweetup. I saw a few people on the video stream that I met in Florida from FL, DC, and NJ during the final Space Shuttle mission.

    From what I saw on, ESA & DLR’s first tweetup was professionally run. They learned from NASA’s 25 or so tweetups, 5 covering Space Shuttle launches.

    NASA JPL hosted the first tweetup and NASA HQ followed up by hosting one in DC. One of the registrants was from Spain. The organizer replied “This is in the US”, he said “I have my passport. What else do I need?”

    That was when NASA realized that they caught “lightning in a bottle”.

    I wanted to be part of the NASA tweetup to see the last Space Shuttle launch; I made it to the waiting list, but I didn’t move up to watch the launch by the countdown clock. But I managed to buy a ticket to watch the launch from the causeway. So I organized an ad-hoc tweetup of those tweeting from the NASA Causeway: @CausewayTweetup

    However, I was invited to something that no civilian and few NASA employees have experienced, seeing a Space Shuttle land 200 yards from the runway. I was part of the first and only NASA tweetup for a Space Shuttle landing.

    Launch Photos:

    Landing Photos:
    I shot B&W for the landing since it was a night landing and I thought that shooting color would be a waste.

    I saw your tweetup about the Florence Starbucks drive-thru. I think you trumped @thestate in coverage.

  8. Nick Nielsen

    Ralph, DLR is the abbreviation for ‘Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt’, which translates to German Center for Air and Space Travel.


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