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AAN Convention Round-up

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The Association of Alternative Newsweeklies held its annual convention last weekend in Philly. A few of us from Seven Days got to go, including moi.

My list of highlights includes:

  • David Carr: I didn't quite understand his appeal until I saw him in person. He's quite a character.
  • And Nick Bilton, who spoke to a packed house at the AAN web conference in San Fran in January. There were, like, 10 people in his Saturday afternoon session. Which was a pity. I think that might have been my favorite talk. The tips I got there turned out to be really useful.
  • Winning awards: Seven Days picked up a few accolades this year in the AAN awards contest. We compete against papers with a circulation of 55,000 or less (we distribute 32,500). Our website won third place for Best Website, Eva Sollberger won third place for Best Blog (which is weird, because she's really a videographer, but they didn't have a video category). Ken Picard won third place for his series about local Chinese restaurants that mistreat their workers. And Suzanne Podhaizer won FIRST PLACE in the Food Writing category! Very exciting.
  • I have to include, in my list of highlights, the city of Philadelphia. It was much more fun than I remembered (the last time I stayed overnight there was for a Free Mumia protest in 1999.) I was impressed with the people from the local tourism office, and their uwishunu campaign. I wish I knew of something like that in VT.
  • Also, the private Liberty Bell tour was awesome.

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