Alison Teal notices that the bloggers have been fiercely territorial about seating and vantage points in the blogger section, and that there seems to be a politeness differential across the generation gap(s):
There is a reserved section on the seventh floor for the bloggers, but I’ve stopped going there. The Internet has been a little sketchy and the floor is uncomfortable. All the desks are taken by the time I get there and to my surprise none of the twenty and thirty year olds are jumping up to offer an elderly woman their seat.
I spent the first night on the floor leaning against a makeshift desk leg, complaining loudly about my arthritis and aching back in vain. On the second night, the desks and chairs began to free up right before Theresa’s speech. Seriously. I guess the younger people thought she wasn’t going to have anything of interest to say. I’ve long been a fan and still think she has the most to say – and in five languages. So I’m sort of saying “shove it” to the floor of the blogging section, which makes posting a bit harder.
Perhaps it has to do with rock-concert mores. If you decide to go to the pre-convention parties while others station themselves in a seat, the others feel entitled to the seats they have staked out for themselves, at the cost of missing out on some of the free drinks and corporate pork.
Also, no matter how loudly Teal complained, I doubt it was louder than the crazy-making din that builds and builds all night, along with the temperature and the tempers of everyone trying to file their stories.
There also seems to be some kind of instant hierarchy among the supposedly egalitarian blogger set.
Some come early and grab the best seats and have sat in those best seats the whole time. Others come early and grab the other good seats (high chairs) on the above level.
The CNN/Technorati team (no credentialed blogger among them) always have about a quarter of the primo space locked up, or they give it magnanimously to people who arrive later, never “upgrading” those of us squeezed into the awful chairs. (Whine, whine.)
The rest of us squeeze into tiny stadium seats and then have to deal with nonbloggers and journalists and cameraman constantly squeezing through that tiny space, jostling our laptops, stepping on our cords and often yakking loudly.
That’s one of the reasons why I didn’t even go into the hall on Wednesday. Burn out and frustration. I watched Edwards speech from the Blogger Bash. I watched the rest of the speeches in various bars and other public spots earlier in the evening. I talked to a lot of noncredentialed people and locals. I knew I had to save up my energy for the last push tonight.
I do apologize for not giving up my hardwon seat on Tuesday night. Then again, I haven’t been in any airconditioned, premium, or “honored guest” suites, myself.