Internet Week New York Kicks Off

David-Michel Davies, aka "DMD," during opening remarks for Internet Week NY

New York’s technology industry gathered in Chelsea this morning to kick off Internet Week New York. This is the fourth annual iteration of the week-long event, which takes place around the city and strove for the maximum amount of crowdsourcing during the planning.

At the event’s HQ in the Metropolitan Pavilion, media and exhibitors heard opening remarks from David-Michel Davies, aka “DMD,” chairman of Internet Week NY. After a few quick thank yous to exhibitors and sponsors, he turned the microphone over to Katherine Oliver, commissioner of the Mayor’s Office of Film, Theatre & Broadcasting. She would be the first to discuss the importance of the technology industry to the future of New York City. More on that in an upcoming post.

In the HQ pavilion, companies including Meebo, Yahoo, AOL, and ShareThis were gathered. There’s also an interesting exhibit called Digital Archaeology from Story Worldwide, an international marketing and advertising firm, tracking the history of the Internet.

A piece of the Digital Archaeology exhibit from 1995.

The exhibit is meant to serve as an archive of the Web. Websites from the history of the Internet starting in the early 1990s are showcased on computers that were the top-of-the-line during their time. Immediately, you’re transported back to the computer you had in high school or college, and it’s amazing to think how far we’ve come in just a short time.

“With the rise of the app and the social Web, I think there won’t be such a thing as a website,” Jim Boulton, deputy MD of Story told me, making his prediction for the future.

One of the pictures on sale through ArtWeLove. Stanford Bunny (Green Matrix) by Shelter Serra

Also there repping a good cause is ArtWeLove, an organization that has asked anyone interested “Can You Draw the Internet?” Some of the drawings are available for purchase with proceeds going to the NYC Fund for Public Schools.

And Google is there with its Watch This Space campaign, which launched in September and discusses the company’s “vision”  for display advertising. The campaign’s website has some data here that might also be useful for PR pros.

There will be more than 250 events during the course of week, and you can learn more about them and the wide range of event sponsors on the #IWNY webpage. (That’s a hashtag you might be seeing a lot of this week.)

We asked DMD if you can have too many events at a conference. Can it be too overwhelming for attendees?

“We worked hard to make the schedule accessible,” he said. “People will find what’s relevant.” Drawing a parallel between the event and its focus — the Web — he added, “The Internet is broad.” There should be something for everyone.