Today on the first Saturday back in London after my nice, wonderful holidays – which, incidentally, don’t deserve a blog entry of their own as social media did not make a bit of difference to them at all. I missed the meetup with the local twitterati of Rostock due to non-connectivity and hence inability to keep track of developments re. venue.
I did make it to the local Frank Zappa festival (Zappanale) for the first time. They have a good network (however all in German). Also the Hanse Sail seemed to have been providing free wifi in the whole area of the city port, but I never saw it in action so can’t report on how well that worked.
Apart from that I felt rather lonely – of course my son was with me and my mum lives there, but all my friends from school days have long since moved away for better opportunities in Western Germany, so I didn’t really have much of a circle to hang out with. Good times in my mum’s allotment though, very relaxing.
Notable individuals I did meet include Bobby Martin, who I saw on stage at the Zappanale on the Saturday and helped arrange his lift back there after running into him in town on the Sunday. I imagine it’s quite fun for the Zappanale being in this small seaside town of Bad Doberan with its own ancient little steam train – from both side there’s a lot of bemused looks. I also met a local girl called Juliane who updated me on all the latest local business gossip and hooked me up with a travel company, so I ended up going on an English speaking guided tour of my hometown on my last morning there – I could so easily do that if I ever decide to go back or spend the summers there.
Because I miss the seaside.
Anyways back to today, interesting event arranged by Tundun Adeyemo for Nigerian bloggers, about using new tech to make a difference – for lots of reasons up my street, for lots of reasons bemused looks but once I started speaking about why I was there, it all made sense. I do still fall back into the Nigerian slang very easily after spending almost 2 years there.
I was horrendously late due to the facebook map guiding me to Dalston Kingsland rather than Bethnal Green, but managed to arrive on time for Mr Kayode Akintemi’s presentation. He spoke about using social networking and also about a lot of things that are happening in the Nigerian entertainment industry – like people not knowing anything about music, which is true, sadly enough.
Kayode Akintemi, incidentally, is the radio presenter who has invited me a couple of times on his show Wake up Africa on Friday mornings. We share a lot of opinions on what’s happening in the entertainment industry there.
The key point of his presentation was, though: Can Nigeria replicate the Obama effect? Can they change a whole political culture by using similar tech? I wonder.
The big issue obviously being the huge gap in the percentage of people who are connected between the US and Nigeria.
But still, I liked the presentation and had a lot of points of view, if I hadn’t been late I think we might have run it together and I would have run the twitterfall, as there was a good projector connected to a wired-up laptop. As it was I waited a few more presentations and then did my own, introducing myself (i.e. explaining what I was doing there…), presenting the twitterfall about #lightupnigeria, and talking about a few of my experiences in Nigeria – it was very well received.
I really look forward to the follow-up from this. We hopefully have a group of people who will be great to have at Africagathering and other appropriate tech events. And we do like a good party!