Saturday, July 19, 2008

So-So Friday Saved by Swag

Friday at BlogHer 08 held few surprises for me. I was actually disappointed in some of the sessions. For instance, I had expected to get more practical, hands-on tips from a session on social networking. Instead the panel was pretty much telling me to do what I already did, and they even seemed behind the curve. Honestly, who doesn't use FriendFeed these days? And we all know about Twitter, right? And why, for heaven's sake, are you guys still pushing Technorati? How is Technorati relevant to Moms, even tech-savvy Moms, unless they live and breathe tech 100% of the day? I love me my gadgets, but Technorati fell off of my list of must-reads a long time ago.

I found myself skipping some of the afternoon sessions and heading out to do some shopping, and judging from the crowds of women I saw streaming out of the hotel into the streets, I wasn't alone. And, as it happens, the lovely cosmetic artists in Saks Fifth Avenue took me in hand and treated me to a makeover that left me feeling refreshed and ready for Friday's cocktail party.

One of the highlights of Friday, though, was schlepping around the hotel and chatting with other bloggers, meeting sponsors and hearing about their new products and why they had come to BlogHer 08. I'm still annoyed with Apple for NOT being in that group, for ignoring the biggest gathering of women bloggers completely, as if we didn't matter. I even wrote to them about it, and I'll be really interested to see if I get a reply from Katie Cotton over at Apple.

But I digress.

I was talking about the great bloggers, and the sponsors at BlogHer08.

Which brings me to the swag.

The. Single. Best. Swag. of Friday? The Zivio Boom, from Joby.

Joby, if you hadn't heard of them, are the people responsible for this cool Gorillapod, a tripod you can turn every which way to hold your camera in the perfect position for taking family photos and the like.

But the Zivio Boom is a new Bluetooth headset, and Joby were letting us beta test it at BlogHer08.

The Boom won't be on the market until later this summer, but the Joby Zivio guys were out there fitting bloggers for it for the beta test. And when I say FITTING, I mean it, because this headset has the most custom fitting set-up I have ever seen. The incredibly patient Zivio guy had to deal with enormous crowds, and at least one really rude blogger who tried to cut in line and wanted him to "just give her one" so she could run off to a meeting that ALL OF US WERE ATTENDING, and who had no respect for the product at all, but was in some kind of free stuff relay race where the first one back to the hotel room won or something. But he talked with each blogger individually for the longest time, explaining very sincerely and passionately the reasons they came out with this headset, chief among them that the designer of the headset had so much trouble with other Bluetooth headsets out there fitting correctly that he got fed up and made his own. So this headset comes with six different ear designs, three each of the typical "mushroom" in-ear kind in assorted sizes, and three "scoop" designs which don't push so far into the ear.

I think you are with me in appreciating how awesome this product could potentially be, just from that one feature, especially if, like me, headsets usually just fall right out of your ears. I must have freakishly loose ears or something, which is just disturbing on way too many levels to contemplate. But the Zivio Boom has other things going for it as well, like a neat extendable mic that really works when the wind is blowing instead of making it sound like you are in a hurricane when you call someone on your cell phone. And it's all sleek and sexy and small, so you feel like someone in a sci-fi movie when you put one on.


Audrey said...

I smiled reading your post. There have been times I've attended seminars on various topics and sometimes I couldn't believe I paid to be there when I should've been paid to teach :) I found you through

Anne-Marie | The Write Spot said...

I'm sorry that you were disappointed in the social networking session that I spoke at. It's so hard with BlogHer because there is such a mix of newbies, people who've been blogging a little bit and are trying to mesh social networking with their blogs, and people who are very comfortable with social networking and bookmarking. It's gotten to the point in the techie sessions where we need a beginning, intermediate and expert session. Even so, you can't believe how many people came up to me and said the session went completely over their heads. LOL. You live, you learn, and you get more swag. I do appreciate the feedback, though!

Viv said...

Anne-Marie, I think you have hit the nail on the head when you say, "We need a beginning, intermediate and expert session."

BlogHer has become so HUGE that we really need more of a break-down into smaller groups. You know, maybe I should just get off my butt and offer to host the intermediate session (who knows, by BlogHer09, maybe I will even be an expert!).

I think the forum provided for you had some problems, as well. We were sadly in need of power strips for our laptops and better audio for the speakers this year. The Westin St. Francis is a beautiful hotel, but their technology still needs a lot of work!

Anonymous said...

So... how's the headset work in noisy environments, and in the wind, now that you've had and and been using it for a little while? :)

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