No matter, I'm sure we'll survive, what of the festival?
It is huge. I was warned about the sheer size of it but you really have to see it to believe it. Meltwater were reporting over 300,000 mentions of SXSW on Saturday alone which should give you a feel for the enormity of the event (or the over sharing of the attendees...).
Picking up the badge took 2 hours, and once I'd finally got that I went along to a couple of sessions and was locked out, too many people! Mental note, get everywhere super early.
You get a feel for the quality of the content when using the official app. The easiest thing is to favorite the sessions you want to go to, and there I was at 9.30am and there was 11 things I wanted to see. I need a clone.
Without a clone, you just have to pick a lane and hope its a good one, which invariably they are. I've seen comedians talking about creative process, UX specialists, the tech guys from Mashable to the Cyborg Anthropologist, who was absolutely fantastic. You can read about her here http://caseorganic.com/ or search for Amber Case on TED, it's well worth it.
There's exhibitors galore, so endless fliers, competitions, vouchers and free drinks thrown at you, but it was the brands giving away ponchos were invariably the most popular though.
One standout campaign launch here is AMEX, who have kicked off a neat promo called Sync, Tweet, Save. Current cardholders just have to link their card to their Twitter account to receive exclusive offers and deals, which they load straight on your card, no printed vouchers, no fuss. A really nice example for financial brands in the social space, and it's certainly generated quite the buzz at the festival.
There's plenty to cover about key themes and speakers, but I'll do that tomorrow as the rain has stopped and Austin has come out to play.
Nic Chamberlain is writing for AdNews from the South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas.