Kevin Kelly is at it again. And all I can do is link.
Borrowing some ideas from Chris Anderson‘s Long Tail concept, Kevin postulates that to make a decent living, an independent creator (musician, artist, writer, whatever) need only amass a thousand “true fans,” defined as people who will buy whatever the maker creates. The challenge, says Kelly, is that the artist has to maintain direct contact with all of these people or they will stop feeling “connected” to you. The good news is that the web has many tools (blogs, RSS feeds, podcasts) that allow creators to maintain direct connections with their fans.
It’s a compelling argument, and the discussion unfolding in the comments is enlightening, with people jumping in with examples of successes and failures. Go over and have a look. Then come back, if you’re a True Fan of mine!
I’ve always been a big supporter of the BarCamp concept (a free self-organizing “unconference” where everyone is expected to contribute or participate), although the original BarCamps are way too technical for me to understand, never mind contribute. So I was happy to find out that CaseCamp Toronto is happening again on April 29th. CaseCamp is a marketing version of BarCamp, with people presenting case studies, and because there’s a big crossover with my favoured tribe of web nerds, there’s usually a heavy dose of social media wonkery. For some reason, these only appear to happen in Canada. My only disappointment is that it’s happening at the exact same time as two other potentially interesting events: StartupCamp 2 and Raindance’s free “99 Minute Screenwriting School.” If anyone makes it to either of those two, would you mind reporting back? And if you’re interested in CaseCamp, sign up soon. There are almost 100 people coming already!