During the Black Thought 2.0 conference, the organizers placed a large screen up front slightly to the left of the main presentation panel. Throughout the conference, the screen displayed live tweets under the conference hashtag #BT2Duke.
That screen and the ongoing twitter conversation was like a constant panelist throughout the event. The audience was always aware of the conversation taking place on the panel and on the screen out there (and in the room) on twitter. At times, panelists would look to their rights at the screen and comment on something that was displayed.
The placement of the twitter screen, as it could be called, was an indicator of the looming presence of digital technologies and social media at the conference and in the lives and activities of the participants. The folks out there on twitter commenting may have been unaware just how integral they were to the flow of the conversations taking place. But they were indeed vital, providing a kind of visual and written soundtrack and feedback loop.
Often, twitter chatter is viewed as the back channel conversation. In this case though, the back channel was up front.
Notes on Black Thought 2.0