Web guru and new media and modern publishing expert Derek Powazek, who believes "if you can consume media you can also create it," joins the speaker lineup at An Event Apart Chicago, October 13–14.

September 15, 2008—Chicago, IL—An Event Apart Chicago adds Derek Powazek to its lineup of leading-edge web design and development thinkers for the October 13–14 event created for people who make websites. Powazek, named one of the top 40 "Industry Influencers" of 2007 by Folio Magazine, is also known for co-founding JPG, the photography magazine that's made by its community, and is a co-founder of 8020 Publishing, the company that grew out of JPG's success. Derek joins the lineup of An Event Apart Chicago to present The Wisdom of Communities, where he will deliver practical tips and tricks on how to designand manage positive community participation on websites.

"I think by now we all understand that the web is about empowering people to use their voices," said Powazek. "But how you invite participation can lead your members to create positive or negative contributions. It's not just about design, it's about social psychology."

Powazek will address the "dark art" of nurturing your website community. To maximize the potential of the web requires sites be open to community participation, and having spent 13 years experimenting to see what works, Powazek shares what he has learned—the hard way. According to Powazek, embracing chaos and turning your site over to its community can and will surprise you. Success requires giving up some control. Powazek cites the influence of The Wisdom of Crowds by James Surowiecki as an underlying source of his ideas for web communities. Although Surowiecki's concept is based on markets, Powazek has successfully applied these concepts to online communities.

"On a day-to-day basis, when you're focused on getting the job done, you can lose your connection to the big picture," said Jeffrey Zeldman, co-founder of An Event Apart. "With a brilliant speaker like Derek Powazek, you get it all: hard-won, big-picture wisdom and practical ideas you can implement immediately. Our attendees will gain inspiration while absorbing important concepts that can improve their communities and help their careers. We're thrilled to have Derek on our stage."

To attend The Wisdom of Communities, Derek Powazek's presentation at An Event Apart, register for this presentation and fourteen others. https://store.aneventapart.com/#chicago-2008. Featured speakers include An Event Apart co-founders, Eric Meyer and Jeffrey Zeldman, the two internationally recognized web authorities, plus Andy Clarke, Curt Cloninger, Jason Fried, Robert Hoekman, Jr., Cameron Moll, Sarah Nelson, Jeff Veen, Rob Weychert, and Jason Santa Maria. Speaker topics and bios are available online. www.aneventapart.com/events/2008/chicago/#schedule.

About An Event Apart

An Event Apart is for people who make websites. Join Eric Meyer, Jeffrey Zeldman, and special guests to gain a deeper understanding of web standards and emerging best practices. Be inspired by fresh ideas and new directions. Gain access to the greatest minds and hottest talents in web design today. http://www.aneventapart.com

An Event Apart Sponsors

An Event Apart receives support from Adobe, GoodBarry, and (mt) MediaTemple.

For additional sponsorship information, contact marci@aneventapart.com.

Press contact: Laura Des Enfants, laura@desenfantsaldrich.com