foibadgeThinking about the Future of Influence Summit I’ll be attending in Sydney this coming week, and having an abiding interest in the derivation of words, I looked up “influence” in my Collins English Dictionary and was interested to see that although the meanings listed for the noun were not terribly helpful (e.g. “an effect of one person or thing on another”) the first meaning under vb. (tr.) “to persuade or induce” seemed to line up with the focus of the event.

The Summit’s theme is “influence is the future of media” and the website lists the key issues to be covered on the day as:

  • Influence as the new center of the marketing world
  • How influence drives content and publishing
  • The shape of the emerging reputation economy

Who will be speaking?

Back to the dictionary for a moment, I was interested also to see that the word “influence” derives from the 14th Century’s Medieval Latin influentia “emanation of power from the stars” (which those few remaining people who have studied Latin in bygone days will know is from the Latin influere to flow into, from fluere, to flow).

Narrowly astrological considerations and etymological divagations aside, I thought that was rather cool, given that the event organisers, Ross Dawson and Beth Etling of The Insight Exchange, do in fact have a stellar lineup of speakers for the day – an array of top influencers in their own right.

Venues and speakers divided by an ocean, linked by technology

Another very cool aspect of the event is that it will be held in both San Francisco (Aug 31) and Sydney (Sep 1), with simultaneous sessions linked across the Pacific by video.

Ross delivers a new framework

I’m also pleased to see that Insight Exchange Chairman Ross Dawson is continuing his practice of enhancing his events with a graphic “framework” illustration of the theme of the day, as here in his new Landscape of Influence framework image, depicting key features of the landscape:

  • driving forces
  • influencers
  • influence mechanisms
  • influence aggregators
  • influence networks

The framework is issued as a beta, with comments for improvements invited.

Reporting from the Summit

I’m planning to do report live from the Sydney part of the Future of Influence Summit on the day via Twitter (hashtag is #foi09) and, if I can get sufficiently organised in time, via Coveritlive. It would be neat if someone attending in San Francisco wanted to be a co-producer on a Coveritlive stream: if that’s you, please let me know via the comments here or the Contact page on this site.

Note: the September 1 date on the CoveritLive alert box above is the Sydney date – in San Francisco it will still be August 31.

I’m also hoping to grab a few instant interviews with speakers, to post here in days following the event.

(Update: as it happened, I was not able to used Coveritlive because of Internet connectivity problems on the day.)

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Des Walsh is an executive coach. He helps business owners and entrepreneurs worldwide deal effectively with the feeling of being left behind or overwhelmed, or both, about social media – especially LinkedIn - and how to engage safely and effectively with social media to help grow their business. Connect with Des on LinkedIn, Google+ and Twitter. And to stay in the loop, get Des’s weekly Social Business Bites (select snippets of his "best of the week" online finds).