I am currently working with the HSM speakers and content team on completing the full calendar of HSM Online Seminars for 2011, many of which are offered for free to interested attendees from anywhere in the world.

One of my personal goals and visions within HSM ever since I joined in 2008, has been to bring all the valuable lessons and insights from their in-person events to a worldwide audience over the Internet.

What is presented at these live conferences and seminars is simply priceless… But in the past, not everyone has had access or the opportunity to get this valuable information.

To put things into context, HSM has been known worldwide for over 20 years as a leader for their in-person events such as World Business Forum, World Innovation Forum and ExpoManagement among others. Each of these events can have thousands of attendees and yet – there’s a potential worldwide audience, many times larger, which simply cannot make it in person (and if they did, quite frankly there would not be an arena big enough to fit them all.)

So by leveraging the Internet and opening these events to a webcast, I am now able to deliver a polished, virtual event experience that lets participants view all the action that takes place on stage from their own computers, regardless of where they may be in the world.

Add to that the capability to view these Webcasts in an On Demand basis, not just during the live broadcast, and you open up a whole range of additional new possibilities and markets including other countries with very different time zones from the USA such as Australia, Europe and Asia.

Now, I have to admit, although the current technology does a great job of transmitting video and audio, it still cannot match the experience of attending in person.

For starters, there are things you cannot transmit over the web such as face-to-face networking, the chance to catch all that happens off the stage such as in side workshops or sharing a drink with a new potential client, and the opportunity to meet and interact in person with the featured speakers. It does have its limitations…

Then again, in comparison, most people who watch the Super Bowl around the world are not physically at the game and they still get to catch the action and enjoy the experience.

In the same vein, for people who are interested in participating in HSM’s events from halfway around the world, without needing to travel and having the option to view the material when it is most convenient for them, there is nothing like webcasting to bring them so close to the action while still being so far.

Music video by Hoobastank performing So Close, So Far. (C) 2009 The Island Def Jam Music Group

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