Friday, November 05, 2010

My opinion about GeekFest

Okay, I am going to say it like it is, what is GeekFest:
1- GeekFest is an unorganized thing, it is what the community has to offer and the community offered those topics. <-- What I mean is, if I was "organizing" this and not "unorganizing" it and had much more time on my hands, I would have done a whole different thing and called it something else and not GeekFest and what we know of
2- It did end up being a sales pitch, but you know what, I didn't find it that annoying, since these are interesting websites and portals and products and projects out there, why not know about them?
3- Oh and 0$ budget, and we all have full time jobs, so we put this together by email and in our own spare time, like in the morning, in the weekend...

What is a Geek:
Some people expect GeekFest to be about programming and computers and technology only, thing is, look up Geek on wikipedia and check the definitions paragraph, it's sorta basically an intellectual curious person :) So topics can be almost about anything interesting and new.

Now what bothered me the most is:
Some people wouldn't keep quiet. It was like an hour and half, and then you could've had all the night for yourself to talk, but after the event was done you left, and you talked through it, tab ma lei? Why why why?

What I loved:
The people themselves, there were great vibes, I wish people stayed a bit after the event ended so I could've met all those new faces. I know that people do miss each other or are eager to meet each other, there were people who aren't on twitter, so this is really something good. 

Tip for next time for whoever is organizing it:
I personally chose Plum, since I thought the casual having a drink thing would be nice, but Lebanese people shouldn't be given the freedom sometimes (excuse me for saying that) and instead we should book a boring conference room, and then if there is a hall near it with drinks that would be perfect, but that would mean we need a hotel, and then BAM idea of geekfest is ruined.. so this is what I mean.. if we want to do what everyone expected GeekFest to be yesterday then we'll have to make it a high caliber thing in my opinion, and since we don't want to change the concept of geekfest, we would have to call it something else.

Thanks to:
THANK YOU everyone for coming, really, I had a huge smile on my face for seeing all these new faces, I just unorganized, and maybe one day if I have much more time on my hands, I would try to put a different kind of event together, something more serious :) And I hope you'll all come back again. Thanks for Plum bar for giving us the venue for free. Thanks Naeema for the graphic design. Thanks Nokia for giving away the cool N8 device, I didn't win, as usual. 

That's my disclaimer, hope no one got offended, and really glad a lot of media covered it, I was truly surprised since it is an informal thing, thanks to all the speakers for showing up, and thanks for the help I got from my friends.

Check what the others had to say:
Danielle from This is Beirut
Moe from Arabianism

This is the website of GeekFest Beirut.


  1. Lilo I do not think you should be offended by whoever says what. The community as a whole takes ownership of the event and molds it into what it wants. This time it was like this and had its good and bad points! Each time is different and special - This is Geek!

  2. I personally loved the thing that was going on yesterday. you can call it Geekfest, huge tweetup or whatever; It was great. Some topics where really interesting if people listened. great work Lil =)

  3. As far as I can tell the un-organisers did everything possible to make the night. The problem was those who came exclusively to talk. I wouldn't have thought of it in advance but the L shape of the bar made it easy for people to ignore the speakers and only chat. If Geekfest is maintained as an informative social gathering rather than simply a social gathering then yes, you probably need to do like you say and have a space more similar to a conference room or have drinks only available at the breaks and after. Maybe if the venue sounds more boring, we will get rid of those who are not interested in the Geekfest side at all. I am sure as the event matures, the presentations will be more in line with expectations. You did a great job.

  4. Liliane, the fact the over 100+ showed up and enjoyed their time was enough to prove the event was a success. You did an amazing job and we all know the effort you put into it.

    The presentations could have been better. It was a social media event after all and I expected the speakers to share their social media practices with regards to their businesses. They had a great opportunity to do that last night but they didn't take advantage of it. It could have been a great learning experience for all of us and more interesting that what they are selling.

  5. Ginger, did I meet you? And thanks, you're right, what you and Moe said is very logical, thanks for the support really, I am happy people enjoyed it in a way or another, and yes speakers could have taken a better advantage!

    Thanks rabih and darine :)

  6. No, I wish, you were pretty busy and I wasn't there long. The Shankaboot crowd did talk about social media marketing methods.

  7. True, but as we all specified, there was too much noise, I only was able to focus when I was standing near the speaker.

    Hopefully I would get to meet you next tweetup or something :)

    Oh that is so weird being busy yet it's an unorganized event :P I just cant help it hehe

  8. You know how I felt about the event! I thought it was a smashing success! The problem is, since we don't get together often, we are all so eager to chat and catch up on everything that has been happening with out lives! So I agree, if there are to be speakers next time, in order to give them the platform they are look for and in order for guests to take something away from the speakers, the event must take place in a room where people will not be able to interrupt, and then, after that..the fun will begin! But all in all, it was a great event, and I really look forward to the next one! Look at what you were able to achieve with a full time job! Seriously, you should quit your job and become a promoter! haha :D