On August 13-15, the attorneys of Marcus Stephen Harris LLC attended SocialDevCamp 2010, exchanging ideas and providing insights on the law’s impact on app development and the inclusion of social media. For those unfamiliar with SocialDevCamp it is billed as an “un conference” and “summer camp for the social web.”

While the mood of the conference was relaxed, in reality, it was informative and insightful which is why it drew hundreds of participants.  Conference attendees included technology executives and developers from new technology providers to Fortune 500 executives who set the pace of the tech race.

Keynote speakers drawing attention included Andrew Mason, CEO of Groupon; Chriss Messina of Google; and Ben Huh of the Cheezburger Network.  Other noteworthy speakers were Brad Floria, founder of Windy Citizen; John Dallas, Jr. of  Hillview Partners and Sundha Jamthe of PayPal.

Key takeaways from the conference were:

·         80% of people spend most of their money within 10 miles of their home.
·         Companies you should have on your radar: A Space Apart, Sprout Box, Empire Avenue, Lightbank, Woopra, Ice Rocket, Weave the People, Firmology and TwitterFountain.
·         Foursquare and similar apps are just the beginning of the social scoring, rating and achievement trend.
·         Mobility based applications that simply duplicate the functionality of websites will not survive.


Apps are being used to leverage social proof (see social networks outside of their networks) which is a psychological phenomenon, also known as informational social influence, occurs when people are unable to make their own decisions and follow their peers’ que.  The apps that actively leverage social proof, can create loyalty and establish repeat visits, and are better positioned to survive in the long run.  These applications can deliver advertisements in a way that is more personal, yet inexpensive while reaching a larger audience.

The current trend is to use apps to merge virtual presence with reality. Farmville’s recent partnership with 7-Eleven allows users to exchange their Farmville achievements for real products — this is just the beginning.

Mobile + Social = Mocial.  Taking your social networks with you on the plane, train or on foot allows you to use apps in connection with GPS to let friends in your network know where you’ve been and where you’re headed.  Notice that iPhone users’ Facebook pages often indicate that several hours ago they were at the new restaurant you heard about.  Mocial networking allows you to quickly comment and ask, “How’s the food there?”

With 3G networks shortly becoming passé with more 4G coverage, consumers will likely see a quality of life increase as our tech providers help us strike a balance between technology to do work as well as balance social interaction and leverage human capital.

Marcus Stephen Harris LLC is one of the leading technology law firms in the Illinois. Marcus Stephen Harris attorneys regularly attend industry events to keep abreast of current issues and to provide legal insight. For more information about this event and the intellectual property and technology law firm of Marcus Stephen Harris, LLC please visit http://www.mshtechlaw.com for contact information.  This firm serves nationwide clients in technology, licensing and intellectual property transactions and litigation.