The Confessional: Michelle Blanc
Michelle Blanc, Montreal & The Web | Michelle is one of the first people in Canada to receive a Masters’ in E-Commerce with a specialty in Management. She rocks the web and to Bloggers like yours truly, Michelle represents gravitas because of her vision, her guts and her innovation. Not long ago she was a he and now fully assumes her status as a transsexual entrepreneur. The ballsiest woman I know now enters the Confessional.
You spend a considerable amount of time at your keyboard so answering this e-questionnaire should be a breeze, yes? Nope, I would really rather do it on the phone cause as you said, I spend a considerable amount of time on the keyboard.
Not long ago, you appeared on TV’s Tout Le Monde En Parle (a popular weekly talk show) watched by almost 2 million people in Québec. Do you think your appearance did more for the web or for transsexuals? Well, I know it did a lot for the trans themselves and their families since a lot of them wrote me and told me so. It also demystified what it is to be stuck with (GID)Gender Identity Dysphoria. As for the Web, strangely enough, even though everybody and their mothers think they know the Web, there is still a tremendous amount of knowledge to share and myths to destroy. So on both subjects; there is still a lot of work to be done. But even if the GID is still a relatively unknown phenomenon to the general masses, it is still much less complex of what the Web really is and of how you could use it to promote your ideas or achieve business goals with it.
You co-founded YULBiz with Philippe Martin. The organization gathers business bloggers and is becoming quite influential. How long before governments finally consider YULBiz as a powerful lobbyist group and what would be first on YULBiz’s agenda? Government is so late in realizing what the web could do for it or event monitoring the Web to understand what people are actually saying about them, that it might take quite a while. Here in Quebec anyway. We sent a letter to the prime minister and the other head of political parties during the last election and none of them ever replied or reacted to our request for a digital plan for Quebec.
Who do you see as Canada’s first Minister of Numeric Affairs? And Québec’s? I really have no clue since at every level of government, they seem so unconcerned with the fact that every month, between 40 and 60% of every dollar spent online by Quebecers goes outside the country, that I really can’t figure out who could have a shred of understanding in what deep shit our digital economy is.
I once fell madly in love with a guy because his text-messages were so witty & smart. How has the Web influenced Love? Generally people tend to believe that the Web isolate people and it is quite the opposite. Yulbiz which is an online movement for Business bloggers and business people interested in blogs is now in 10 cities around the globe after just 3 years. And every month, people gathered around to drink and talk, in the real life. Online dating sites did the same thing for quite a few people. Unfortunately, in these types of online dating settings there also is a lot of deception.
I’ve notice that whenever I gather with friends, a good percentage of our discussions centers around social networks such as Twitter and around tech-gadgets like my beloved BBerry. Are we geeks or socially-inept individuals? In the seventies, parents used to freak out about how much time their teenagers spent on the phone. Social media are the new phones and are a quite effective tool of socialization.
The Web is by far the most powerful tool for change. How can we best use it to save Africa and other nations in need? Social media (including blogs) that allow global awareness are already an effective force.
Name the three most essential Net-etiquette rules. Share without hoping for reward. Be passionate & respectful. Do not hide under anonymity.
Name three of your favourite websites? And why?
Google: it’s the door of the Web
Twitter: It’s the coffee break room of the world were a lot of informal (but nevertheless crucial) conversation are talking place
Wikipedia: It’s the people repository of knowledge
On a deserted Island (where there is Wi-Fi, of course) what are the three things that you bring besides your i-Phone and your Amex? My laptop, glasses and snorkelling gears.
Name three songs currently in heavy-rotation on your I-Pod. None. Strangely enough, I never bought a CD in my life (actually I bought 3 eight tracks of Supertramp a very long time ago). I listen to music thru my wife that is a fanatic of emergent music.
When will I see you next? Whenever, on my different blogs, on FB, Twitter, at Laïka were I work often, on some obscure bar where my wife brings me or at one of the numerous geek/bloggers event or conference…