The Social Network of Food, circa 2004

Voices from the early days of internet conversation

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By David Hammond

Ten years ago, Mike Gebert (James Beard award-winning videographer), Rob Gardner (Oak Parker and now editor of The Local Beet), me and about dozen or so other food fanatics started, a chat site devoted to talking about food in mostly Chicagoland, but including sections on cuisine outside Chicago, cooking and beverages.

Before Facebook, Twitter, OKCupid and just about all other immensely popular ways of connecting online, we developed a social network for local people who wanted to talk about food, its preparation, presentation and history.

We leveraged the new technology of the social network we created to plan social events for like-minded food people to get together at restaurants and other venues to eat food and talk about it. And ten years later, is still going, with more posts than ever per day and over 15,000 registered members.

Gebert, Gardner and I recently had lunch at La Quebrada in Cicero to talk about the early days of internet food conversations and how that changed our lives:

Listen to the conversation by clicking here.


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