What to do when you present a paper to an empty conference room….

Tiffany Glass DomeI read this article from a link in one of our readings for this week’s class. I’ve been here before – presenting a conference paper that I worked so hard on, to an empty room. http://www.gradhacker.org/2012/01/30/publishing-your-presentations-online/

Terry Brock, the author said:

A few weeks after the conference was over, I had an idea: I sat down with Keynote, opened up my slide show, hit the “record” button, and gave my paper again. Then, I uploaded it onto Vimeo. A few years later, hundreds of people have watched the presentation, and I’ve created a resource I can use over and over again.

There are a number of reasons why I think you should all consider doing the same thing with your conference papers. The nature of the conference paper is that it is only as useful as the amount of people who hear it. If you’re in a popular session, with some well-known archaeologists, then you may get some exposure. But, as a graduate student, particularly if it’s one of your early papers, this may not happen, and then the hard work you put into that paper feels like wasted time. What good is a piece of research if no one is reading it?

This is so true of a lot of papers presented by graduate students. Disappointment and frustration land many papers in a forgotten notebook in the back of a drawer. There’s a lot of great research out there that needs an outlet. I think Digital options, such as video recording your presentation and placing it out on the web is a wonderful way for more presentations to be seen, and Terry Brock hit it perfectly with this article.


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