Confabb Confabulation

    November 14, 2006

Somewhere along the way with Socialtext, I found myself partially in the events business.

We developed a service called Eventspace to provide wikis for events. By now we have facilitated over 150 conferences, tradeshows, workshops, seminars and camps. The upside is this how many influential users first gained exposure to wikis and now using a wiki to augment an event is common practice. The downside is I go to way too many conference. Part of this is my job, the other part is not complaining.

So I have significant interest in my colleagues Salim Ismail and Cameron Barrett’s new venture Confabb, a site for conferences. I have to wonder if the brand stems from Confabulation (Verbalizations about people, places, and events with no basis in reality) or Confab (chew the fat: talk socially without exchanging too much information). Both make sense, the former does more for me.

There is a decent degree of overlap with the broader visions of Eventful (disclaimer, I’m an advisor) and Upcoming. Some features are lacking (the search feature needs work based on ego tests), but Confabb is off to a good start. It could be useful, but I won’t know until I have tried it through the lifecycle of an event. The upside is the events business is ripe for high margin advertising, the downside is, as anyone in the business will tell you, it is a hard business. But maybe they can help fix that.



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Ross Mayfield is CEO and co-founder of Socialtext, an emerging provider of Enterprise Social Software that dramatically increases group productivity and develops a group memory.

He also writes Ross Mayfield’s Weblog which focuses on markets, technology and musings.