Speaking both as “back in the day™” organiser and audience member, I don’t recall organisers having much to do with backchannels, they mostly happened because audiences wanted them. There might have been some priming, some coordinated decision about a hashtag, but I think that the main difference is that audiences wanted to *connect*, and this was happening both off and on events.

back in the day™ was a time of exploration, we would all download every single app and create accounts on every single server to try to find tools which would offer a new angle. The more accounts, the better.

Today you are proud of cancelling subscriptions, removing apps, moving away from online tools.

I have the feeling that there’s less interest in connecting these days, and this reflects in conferences.