Here at #SxSW, books are big. Books are shiny. Books are heavy. If you want to get some attention, you need to have a book, or be on a book cover. A bit bizarre for a conference that screams “Interactive” all over the internet is the fact that all books I’ve seen are totally made out of dead trees. Plain paper. No huge online crowd sourced project, no big multi-channel social media endeavors, nothing excitingly interactive. Plain paper.
Interestingly, most of the people I speak to in the Samsung Blogger Lounge gave up reading paper stuff ages ago. If they cannot pop it onto their iPad, it does not exist. With more than 100 people in the room, the 50 free signed copies that are being giving away each day are more than enough for the people who want one. Knowledge is heavy. Flying knowledge home costs a ton.
It seems that the best way to promote your social media knowledge and experience is by using a technology that was old 500 years ago. But then again, nothing wrong with old technology. Looking more closely – apart from the weight – there is not a lot of difference between the Social Media Book and the iPad: watch!