5th Annual PodCamp Returns to Holyoke Community College

Lesley Lambert of Westfield concentrates at PodCamp WesternMa 4. (Photo  Patrick Brough)

Lesley Lambert of Westfield concentrates at PodCamp WesternMa 4. (Photo Patrick Brough)

(HOLYOKE, Mass.) – A full day of lively discussion, info-sharing, and plenty of documentation via smartphone, tablet, or laptop awaits at PodCamp Western Mass. 5 (PCWM5), this year slated to convene on Saturday, March 30, 2013, at Holyoke Community College’s Kittredge Business Center.

The event welcomes anyone interested in learning more about social media and networking, from beginners to advanced practitioners. At this self-styled ‘unconference’ – the only one of its kind in the region and organized entirely by volunteers – participants choose the topics they’d like to discuss. PCWM co-founder Jaclyn Stevenson, director of public relations and social media for Winstanley Partners, a creative agency in Lenox, Mass., said this democratic approach is in line with the key tenets of social media and networking, which aim to involve everyone in a global conversation.

“Our world has always been a social one, and while technology is moving the medium forward, it’s still a very human phenomenon,” Stevenson said. “‘Real-life’ events like PCWM highlight that fact, and offer all types of people – extroverts and introverts alike, opportunities to both learn and teach.”

PodCamps aim to promote education, innovation, and collaboration between new media enthusiasts and professionals of all types, including bloggers, podcasters, YouTubers, social networkers, and the people who read, watch, and listen to them. Anyone can also suggest or lead a session, and topics often include overviews of current and emerging new media tools.

PCWM will be held on Saturday, March 30, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at HCC, with an after-party at Slainte in Holyoke to follow. Attendees are encouraged to bring laptops, power strips, smartphones, and cameras, and can come and go as their schedules allow. The cost of the program is $30 and $15 for students, which includes a box lunch and morning refreshments, as well as a PCWM t-shirt as supplies last. Tickets are limited, and participants are encouraged to pre-register via EventBrite.

PodCamp WesternMass (PCWM) is an independent community-based event launched in 2009, designed to allow anyone interested in the online world to share ideas, hear from industry experts, and participate in discussions at their own pace. PCWM is part of a large network of similar events; the first PodCamp was held in September 2006 in Boston, and today camps are staged around the globe in response to this rapidly growing phenomenon. To learn more or to register, visit the PodCamp WesternMass website.


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