Although it's been already a couple of weeks since the re:publica took place in Berlin this year, I'd like to share some thoughts on this years re:publica with you.

A little backstory

It's been my third re:publica this year. And despite this fact, it's still hard for me to describe the re:publica to other people. It even starts with the simple things. Is it a conference? Is it a meetup? Is it a fair?

Well, this article is for you. And for me. It's an explanation and a recap. And in the end, I hope, you'll get a better feeling of what the re:publica actually is.

Internet conference

The re:publica took place for the 11th time this year with the motto "Love Out Loud", short: LOL.

In short, I would describe re:publica as one of the biggest internet conferences in Germany/Austria/Switzerland.

It offers such a variety of topics, that it's hard to find a common ground here, however, the internet is the ONE common thing here.

Let me give you some insights on the topics covered as this year's event, by showing you some talk titles:

  • The Future is Female
  • Gleiches Web für Alle - Ist meine Website barrierefrei?
  • Are we living inside an ethical (and kind) machine?
  • Turkish delight: A for Arrest, B for Bots & C for Censorship
  • Mit den Trollen ums Datenfeuer tanzen

These are just a small selection of talks, and as you can see here, topics range from business and the future of work to politics, to arts & culture, and love.

All in all, there are more than 1.100 speakers (with 47% female speakers (to all the other tech conferences: see, it's actually possible!)) 13 stages, various meetings & networking rooms, and more than 8.000 attendees.

Proper planning recommended

With the experience of two previous re:publica visits, I knew that visiting the re:publica requires two things.

1) Do not plan too many sessions in advance: If you plan all your timetable in advance, a full day of re:publica can be pretty busy and stressful. Rather go with the flow and be flexible when it's needed.

2) Plan must-watch sessions in advance: Each year, there are some sessions and talks which are an absolute must-watch. Plan them in advance and be there 15 to 30 minutes ahead of the session. Chances are high that other people are there too.

re:publica program

One of the particular reasons describing the re:publica is its diversity of visitors.

Usually, when visiting trade shows or conferences, you'll find it quite easy to describe the visitors:

  • Developers go to development conferences
  • Marketing people go to marketing events
  • And media managers go to media meetups

Sounds legit, right? Well, the re:publica is different. I'm sure that you'll find all those mentioned groups there, besides bloggers, security experts, Internet activists, politicians, and others.

About love and hate.

Let me draw your attention, to the following topics now. As the slogan suggested, this years event was all about love. But was it really?

There's been this track "Love Out Loud", but if you take a look at the various sessions, some of them are more focused on hate, hate speech, fake news, and similar ones.

So without further ado, let me give you a selection of talks you should (or at least can) re-watch from this years re:publica 2017. Sorry for all the non-german speaking people here. I guess most of my selected talks are German ;-)

Elisabeth Wehling: Die Macht der Sprachbilder – Politisches Framing

This has been definitely one of my favorite talks at rp17.

Turkish delight: A for Arrest, B for Bots & C for Censorship
Fakes, Leaks und Desinformation - Verlässlicher Journalismus im Nachrichtensturm

Great insights on how journalism works in 2017 with great people from the ZDF (it's German).

Gunter Dueck: Flachsinn – über gute und schlechte Aufmerksamkeit
Sascha Lobo: Vom Reden im Netz.