Thursday, October 08, 1998

Internet World: WWWAC, Webgrrls and NYNMA event "Soho to IPO: Silicon Alley Matures and Faces Its Growing Pains

Continuing the frenzied pace of Internet World, typical of any conference in town, I headed over to the Jacob K. Javits center on Thursday, October 8th along with Howard Greenstein, Eric Goldberg, Deb Shultz, and Eileen Shulock to begin setup for the WWWAC, Webgrrls and NYNMA event "Soho to IPO: Silicon Alley Matures and Faces Its Growing Pains." Formerly the Silicon Village event, this year the panel discussion, lead by Lisa Napoli was an attempt to discuss, debate, and discern how New York has gone from a town of small startups to a major leading city for new media and companies financial success. Unfortunately, once again the impressive array of panelists (Kevin O'Connor, Doubleclick; Martin Nisenholtz, NYTimes; Candice Carpenter, iVillage; Glenn Meyers, Raremedium; Scott Kurnit, The Mining Company) failed to say much beyond "safe" topics. I think people go to panels because they are interested in the topic. They would like to learn something from the esteemed speakers or be exposed to a meaty debate. Instead we are feed pat answers and recycled musings. Ms. Napoli made valiant efforts to draw out inspired answers and asked a few charged questions, "If you could be one of the other panelists, who would you be?" Mark Stalhman shouted out from the audience of "Up the Alley!" With his charge, the panel ended and the 400+ attendees streamed back into room 1E11 for more cocktails and hors d'oeuvres. This event was successful in bringing together a terrific menagerie of industry professionals ranging from programmers to account people to board members from NYNMA and WWWAC to anyone who has an interest in new media and especially in New York.