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Michael O'Connor Clarke Michael O'Connor Clarke is proud to be a card-carrying flack. Currently based in Toronto, Michael has spent almost 20 years in corporate communications and marketing roles. He started blogging at almost the same time as he first moved into PR - over five years ago. Now he's trying to figure out how to combine these two areas of expertise for the benefit of clue-seeking clients. In his time, Michael has pitched people, products, processes and pop-tarts, but he has a congenital inability to peddle fluff. Email Michael

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November 13, 2006

Confabb launches - great addition to the PR 2.0 toolkit

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Posted by Michael O'Connor Clarke

One of the things us PR folk are often asked to do is to help research and identify the most important and influential conference events our clients ought to be attending.

It looks like that part of the job may have just gotten a whole lot easier with the launch of Confabb, described as "an aggregate database of major conferences, conventions, and trade shows sorted by industry with social networking tools designed to empower conference attendees to improve their overall experience."

It's too early to know for certain whether this thing will become the central magnet for conference listings and discussions it is aiming to be, but from a design and functionality perspective alone it certainly gets my vote already.

I'll confess to being a little biased, as I'm a long-time fan of the co-founders, Salim Ismail (of PubSub fame) and Cameron Barrett (blog pioneer). These gents know what they're doing.

The search and browsing capabilities of Confabb already give the service a considerable edge over competitors. It's a lot more flexible and easier to use than the old approach, as epitomised by sites such as the American Tradeshow Directory. I know where I'll be sending my account teams to do their research from now on.

I only have one other quick observation on the sevice so far, but I'm going to spend some time digging deeper into it.

It's mildly exciting to note that I have a listing already in their Speaker Directory. Rather puzzling to note that a number of much better speakers (most notably David Weinberger) are not yet listed. Odd. But then, I see that even one of their initial investors, the inveterate conference-goer Dave Winer, hasn't made it into the lists yet. Doubly odd.

Still - a valuable and very interesting thing they've done here. Excellent stuff.

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