Arizona Tweetup

Arizona Travel Tweetup

Today marked the 4th Arizona Travel Tweetup. All told seven of us made our way to Boulders on Broadway for a great mixture of travel conversation, beer, food, and travel-tech talk.  It was absolutely fantastic seeing familiar faces and putting new faces to twitter handles.

Everyone had lots of great stories and a wealth of fantastic advice, new resources and insights.

The following were in attendance:






@AlexBerger – You’ve already found me =)

Didn’t make it out this time? Stay tuned for details about the 5th Arizona Travel Tweetup. Should be happening some time in May/June!

The Arizona Travel Tweetup – In Review!

Arizona Travel Tweetup Crew

Howdy all! Just got back from Tempe and the Xtreme Bean where I had the pleasure of kicking off the first Arizona Travel Tweetup.  I’m thrilled to say that despite busy March schedules we had a better than expected turnout – offering the opportunity to lay the ground work for a better organized Arizona travel community.

We talked twitter, wordpress, travel tips and more while exchanging adventure stories and getting acquainted with the people behind the twitter handle.  It was an absolute blast! You can find the details behind the meet-up here as well as a growing list of Arizona Travel blogging/twitter personalities.

In attendance:

@AlexBerger – Virtualwayfarer – Scottsdale, AZ

@girlfromarizona – Girl From Arizona – Tempe, AZ

@khegre – Khegre on Twitter – Phoenix, AZ

@tomtravel2 – Tom Travel 2 – Scottsdale, AZ

Thank you all so much for coming out.  I hope to set up another tweetup sometime in the next 2-3 months.  If you have any suggestions/venue ideas/requests or comments please don’t hesitate to post them here or shoot me an @Alexberger on twitter.  I’d love your feedback and participation!

Arizona Travel Blogger Meet Up!

Tempe Town Lake at Sunset by Alex Berger

Howdy friends, it has gradually come to my attention that Arizona is an often overlooked powerhouse for independent, travel minded bloggers and travel based social media personalities. Many of us cross paths online via twitter, blogs or social forums on a regular basis – but seldom put 2 and 2 together/meet face to face.

For a group that highly values social interact, meeting new friends and stories of adventure, this just doesn’t strike me as acceptable. The solution?  An Arizona Travel Blogger meet up. I’m not talking about anything fancy – just coffee or a beer, a few hours of conversation and a chance to share wisdom while putting names with faces, blogs and twitter handles.

Date: Saturday, March 6th at 11:30AM.

Location: Xtreme Bean which is located on the South West Corner of McClintock and Southern in Tempe, near the US 60/101.  Yelp profile here.

Coordination: Use twitter hash tag  #aztw. My phone number is 480.313.2441 if you want to confirm anything or are having issues finding the coffee shop.

Spread the Word: So, here’s the challenge.  Let’s make sure we don’t miss anyone.  Are you aware of travel tweeps, bloggers or industry personalities that might like to join?  Make sure to either send them to this post, or get me their e-mail and I’ll reach out to them.

Arizona Travel Bloggers:

@AlexBerger – Virtualwayfarer – Scottsdale, AZ

@DonnaLHull – MyItchyTravelFeet – Tucson, AZ

@dkeahey – Adventurous Wench – Arizona

@girlfromarizona – Girl From Arizona – Tempe, AZ

@GoSeeAz – AZ Central Travel – Phoenix, AZ

@khegre – Phoenix, AZ

@pen4hire – A Traveler’s Library – Southern Arizona

@roamingboomers – The Roaming Boomers – Scottsdale, AZ

@tomtravel2 – Tom Travel 2 – Scottsdale, AZ

@TravelWriting – Travel Writers Exchange – Arizona

@upupandagay – Up Up and A Gay – Phoenix, Arizona

-Post below to be added to the list.

I look forward to the opportunity to meet you all face to face.  If you have any additional thoughts/feedback/etc. don’t hesitate to shoot me a message or respond here.   Let’s make this happen!


Is E-Mail Dead? A Millennial Weighs In

Orkney Islands - An Old Rusted Tractor at Sunset

I was recently approached by Scottsdale Airpark News Magazine to write a piece on social media. I chose to weigh in on the life (and death) of e-mail, the generational gap in usage behavior and explain the conundrum baffling many business experts: why don’t young business professionals rely on e-mail as their primary source for communication?  This post is a follow up to another piece I wrote entitled; Social Networks, E-mail and User Behavior in August of 2008.

From Scottsdale Airpark News:

Is E-Mail Dead? A Millennial’s view on today’s trusty tool

Stop! Before you click the send button and fire off that next e-mail, ask yourself, “Who is my audience and what is their age demographic?” As we prepare to enter a new decade, it’s time to think about how the use of e-mail has changed since 1995. Those who are 26 years and younger—“Millenials”—have a very different attitude about it than Generation X or even Y.

In the mid to late ’90s, e-mail was the leading edge. It offered unparalleled utility, was time effective and cost sensitive. It quickly became a requirement in most places of business and a part of our daily routine. Yet, despite its apparent necessity, the next few years will see e-mail moved to the endangered species list.

Change of Address

Non-Millennials embraced the Internet during a period when Internet Service Providers (ISP) and work-associated e-mails were king. If you’re over 26, you’ve probably had one e-mail address associated with your home ISP and a second professional e-mail for work. Most non-Millennials change their e-mail only when they move or change employers, so they have had maybe two addresses in the last 10 to 15 years.

Millennials, on the other hand, have been forced to adapt. During the peak of the tech boom, America’s youth were flooding online. Hungry for privacy and their own piece of online real estate, they signed up for free e-mail providers like Hotmail, Yahoo and eventually Google. They had free time, a burning curiosity, and a native understanding of the web which drove them to explore … sometimes recklessly.

What many discovered was an inbox inundated with spam. While older generations used e-mail for conversations, Millennials had instant messaging. The end result was a transient relationship with e-mail. Too much spam? Just register a new address. Interests changed? Register a new address. too childish? Time for another. An environment quickly evolved where keeping your address book up to date was impossible.

Enter Social Media

Many people were shocked by how sites like Facebook became so successful among young people. The answer is simple. Social media sites provided a “one-stop shop” for most of the resources Millennials desperately needed. They wanted a simple service that essentially replaced e-mail with a database-driven address book that users automatically updated—and one that provided real-time chat, e-mail-like functionality and the ability to share rich media.

Facebook and co. rocked the boat but didn’t end e-mail’s dominance. After all, e-mail still offers value not readily duplicated by social networks. It remains our go-to resource for sharing documents and files, the preferred medium for professional communication (especially due to its archival value) and a necessity for trans-generational communication.

It’s time to prepare for a new decade, one that’s no longer shackled to e-mail. File sizes are skyrocketing and have quickly swamped e-mail’s capability. This has spawned spinoff resources, such as, which allow quick and easy file sharing. Social media is no longer the sole domain of Millennials and the occasional early adopter. It’s reached a critical mass where Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn are commonplace. They’ve become the new status quo, paving the way for the mass adoption of Google Wave and similar products delivering a more engaging, real-time, collaborative and user-friendly experience. It all points to a future that is sure to retire e-mail to the domain of rotary telephones, typewriters and fax machines.

So, before you hit send, ask yourself, is e-mail really the right medium for your message?

Alex Berger, a Millenial, is the author of the blog, as well as an analyst with Fox & Fin Financial Group, 7333 E. Doubletree Ranch Road, Suite 200, Scottsdale.;; @MandAAZ.

View a .pdf of the print version here.

Have thoughts, comments, or your own insight to add?  Please join the discussion with a comment below!