For most of my life paying close attention to LDS General Conference has been primarily an exercise in sleeping. It’s not just conference, but anytime I stop moving and stare at a tv – it just puts me to sleep. With modern technology though, Conference can and has, for me, become a much more interactive and participative experience. In this post I would like to share some things you can do on the internet to participate in Conference. If I’ve missed something, please list it in the comments – I’d like to find out more ways to participate.
- The first thing to do is to actually listen to or watch conference via the internet. This isn’t a requirement at all, but something I do because I don’t have the ability to watch TV. It also makes it easier to have multiple screens going that focus on Conference. You can watch Conference live on the internet, streamed through the LDS.org website.
- Follow Twitter posts about conference, and post your thoughts on talks to Twitter. The hashtag (a way of categorizing tweets) for Conference is #LDSConf using this in your tweets makes it easy for everyone to notice your tweets about conference. There are several ways to follow #LDSConf – my preferred method is via Google’s live updates. Another way is through “What the Hashtag” but I’m not too fond of their interface. During Conference today (1st & 2nd sessions on Saturday) there were over 10,000 tweets about conference. What this ends up doing is really highlighting which parts of talks are really standing out to people – as there will easily be over 100 tweets about a single important quote 2 seconds after the quote is uttered.
- If you are Facebook friends with several other LDS people, your facebook homepage is probably really active with conference discussion (mine is at least). This is a good place to discuss talks as they are going on.
- Internet resources in general. Often times talks refer to other talks or to other important things that can be found on the internet. A wealth of links flow through the #LDSConf tweet feed and will likely be available on your facebook wall. This group research effect will help you quickly identify resources to bookmark for future reference.
- LDS centric bulletin boards. If you are a member of any LDS Centric boards, they might be very lively with live discussion of Conference. This can be a good place to post your thoughts and to read the thoughts of others while Conference is going on.
These are the things *I* find most useful. I know there are many others out there, please share them – especially if they’re really good. The key idea here is to make Conference more participative, to stay awake and to get more out of it. You can always go back tomorrow and re-watch a particular talk (via lds.org or youtube) or read it next month. The key thing I’m looking for is to be able to really pull the nuggets out of conference. It’s also really nice to see literally hundreds of people discussing something so important.