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What I HAVE been doing, however, is helping to organise a CONFERENCE, which has been Quite Exciting. It's the International Graphic Novels And Comics Conference which I've previously mentioned attending in other years in Manchester, Bournemouth and Dundee. This year it was meant to be UAL's turn to host it in That London, and as that is a) where I am doing my PhD b) where I WORK I was involved in the DOING of it.
So, when The Current Situation kicked off I was a bit disappointed when it looked like it was all going to be cancelled... until I BEMOANED the situation to The Delegates On My Registration List who suggested that we do the whole thing online instead. This was a GRATE idea, and so that is what we DID! We asked all of the presenters to PRE-RECORD their presentations and then upload them to our Figshare site, and then the conference itself was a mix of Workshops, and Q&A sessions done on Blackboard Collaborate. The idea was that people could thus look at the presentations any time they wanted, and then have plenty of time to talk about them afterwards.
It was a HECKLOAD of work, not least for me as I was looking after the Figshare side of things, which involved three items which SHOULD NEVER BE MIXED: Academics, Technology, and Deadlines! Eventually though we got it all sorted out between the four of us who were running the event, all ready to kick off on Wednesday last week. It had been a LOT of effort, so it came as a bit of a surprise to us when we started to realise it WASN'T just a load of hassle for nothing, and that theere was actually loads of good stuff there. Furthermore, it all BLOODY WORKED!
This latter aspect continued to delight us through the next three days - IT WORKED! Loads of people got involved, all of the Q&A sessions were full of questions, and people seemed happy... very happy, in fact. The only major issue was that there waasn't anywhere to GOSSIP between sessions or in the pub afterwards, but other than that it worked as well - or BETTER - than a normal conference would.
And best of all, all of the presentations are online FOREVER for anyone to have a look at. Go on, have a look at The Conference HUB site, where you can find out everything that was going on and then link directly to the papers.
It was a GRATE experience all round, though flipping knackering. I'm just glad it's not our turn again next year!
posted 8/7/2020 by MJ Hibbett
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