Just An Online Minute... Ripple 6 Gets Down And Tweets Up
Ripple 6 TweetUp, Ripple 6 offices, New York
January 27, 2008
I watched the "United States of Tara" on Showtime the other night with my good friend and now, strangely, industry peer of sorts, Gail Hilton (Dir. Marketing and Sales for Qwikker). It might be the greatest show on cable as it follows the lives of a family where the mom has multiple personalities, has stopped taking her meds because they made her uninterested in life, and the family just deals. Believe it or not, the show popped into my head as I left the Ripple 6 TweetUp last night. This industry of whatever you want to call it: media, marketing, advertising, digital, consulting, (insert buzzy career move) experts is in a constant state of transitioning personalities and that includes the parties. And the role of someone like me (and you, I see you at these things, too) has to adapt whenever Runaround Sue, the rowdy, bawdy, glossy party, decides to sigh into Mr. Whitewall, the office-based, cubicle-friendly, gently socially awkward get-together. Because really, each personality has something to offer.
Sometimes walking into a small conference room with glowing white walls and sallowing fluorescent lights can suck the energy right out of you. I arrived at the same time as Matt Caldecutt of Trylon PR, once again semi-freaking him out through his headphones, and removed my coat with trepidation as I peered into the room, noticing tiny clusters ("28 Days," anyone? Sandra Bullock... the faux soap opera?) of people tightly surrounding an oblong table. The table was covered in four trays -- two fruit, one veggie, a couple of bottles of wine, a singular bottle of Maker's Mark, and a bucket of beer. I glanced at name tags, expecting lots of "@soandso, @mkting4u, etc" but was surprised to see a lot of full names. And here is where I become a name stickler. Are you ready?
It's called a TweetUp, no? Yes yes, I too hate the combo of Tw+any action on Twitter=new doofy word, but that's how people roll. In fact, back in my IBM days, an official moratorium on naming new projects "Blue" anything went out to the masses because every nerdling with a prototype was blueing it up. Anyway, if we're going to use dorky words like TweetUp, and at the core, it's a gathering of Twitter folks, shouldn't you be ON Twitter to be AT a TweetUp? Talk amongst yourselves.
Of course, on the other side, if non-Twitter-ers appear, there's an opportunity to educate, but then you spend more time explaining "at replies" than discovering more about the person and their job, their favorite toiletries, their knitting circle. I've only been to one TweetUp before, and the organizer did a pretty good job facilitating introductions, conversation, and good times. It seemed in the Ripple 6 crowd, a lot of the people present already knew each other IRL (Google that, sister) and made it weird for a newcomer to edge in. I don't necessarily mean myself, because you know I'll interrupt your conversation to introduce myself.
The guest of honor was Jason Falls. Does that name ring a bell? I got the feeling that it should have for me, but, well, when I don't know someone I'm honest about it. So I asked him. He's a social media consultant from Louisville, KY. He's on Twitter and he has a great accent. And I'm going to assume he has a relationship with Ripple 6. He brought the Maker's Mark and that pleased many minglers. All that booze and no real booze-soaking food must have made the later end of the evening quite revealing.
Before I left to attend to some personal matters (should I carry an attaché when I say something like that?) I met Jeremy Meyers of Sony BMG (@jeremymeyers), who was a little flustered while talking with Zara Altbach, Senior Sales Director at Ripple 6 due his dealings with frustrating folks throughout the day.
Zac Moser of Ripple 6 may have been the official greeter, he introduced himself immediately and was instantly a comfortable conversation partner. I found him flitting around the room, grabbing gab with Carlos Flores (@YCFlores) and Chris Kieff (@ckieff), Director of Marketing at Ripple 6. Even though there was no burlesque, it ended up being a good night of mellow conversation, and it is always a sincere pleasure to meet the flesh versions of those square avatars you communicate with on a daily basis.
Next time, I vote for a special room where non-Twitter-ers have to sit through a "buy this timeshare" Twitter pitch, get a handle, and then -- and only then -- are they allowed in to eat the fruit. Which, by the way, I ate most of. Thanks, Ripple 6!
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It's not really a TweetUp if you aren't on Twitter!