Send us your questions for CBC Community at ROFLcon
CBC Community's Lauren O'Neil will be traveling to Cambridge, Mass. for the occasion, where she'll be tracking down some of the world's most recognizable people to ask questions.
If you've got something to ask one of ROFLcon's attendees, send your question to firstname.lastname@example.org. We'll do our very best to get it answered.
You can also join us a live chat from the heart of the action on Friday at 4 p.m. EST.
We'll be talking about the role of digital culture in Canadian society with people who've accidentally become celebrities thanks to YouTube, people who study internet culture, and people who create viral memes for a living.
Held biennially at MIT, ROFLcon was founded in 2008 by an admittedly nerdy group of Harvard undergrads.
"ROFLcon is basically the Internet, all in one place," said conference founder Tim Hwang in a phone interview with CBC News "It's a conference that brings together people who have unexpectedly - or expectedly - become Internet famous, along with commentators, scholars of internet and people who simply spend way too much time on the Internet."
Hwang, who started ROFLcon in 2008 with fellow Harvard student Christina Xu, said that what sets this conference apart from similar events is its academic focus.
Viral video creators mix with Harvard fellows, accidental web celebrities sign autographs for their super fans, and journalists document everything carefully.
"One of the reasons I started ROFLcon in the first place was because a lot of the discussion about internet culture is often really, really shallow," he said. "We want make the discussion more substantive, and the way we do that is by bringing in researchers, having them share the stage with people who have actually lived through what's happening online."
Some of the more important panel discussion topics Hwang points out include digital privacy, online copyright, piracy, and professionalization of the space.
"Whether it's KONY, Anonymous, Wikileaks or, arguably, even the Obama campaign in 2008, Internet culture is bleeding out," he says. "Memes in general are becoming a way of communicating all sorts of things - political and beyond."
Sixty-one celebrity guests are currently expected to attend, with more rumoured to show up at the last minute according to Hwang.
Confirmed guests include the Old Spice Guy, Ethan Zuckerman from The Center for Civic Media, Antoine Dodson of Bed Intruder fame, the creator of Nyan Cat, Chuck Testa and talents behind the likes of Reddit, Buzzfeed and the 'I can haz Cheesburger' network.
If you've got a question for one of ROFLcon's guests, please email email@example.com and we'll do our best to round up an answer for you.
Join us on Friday at 4 p.m. for a live chat to discuss internet fame and culture.
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Meet the Community Team
CBC News Community team, from left to right: Andrew Yates, Andrea Lee-Greenberg, Lauren O'Neil, John Bowman
If you're part of the CBC News community, you're likely to meet one of us: we're the folks working to produce and promote your stories. Read more about us.
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