It was over lunch in late 2016 that Emma-Louise Elsey and Holly MacDonald decided they wanted to revive the Salt Spring Digital group. Both women run successful businesses from the island that operate primarily through virtual channels, and most work days are spent in front of computer screens. It’s a great way to make a living, but can leave you feeling isolated. Plus, working online is sometimes hard to discuss with people who aren’t also in the business. The two women first met at a Salt Spring Digital event in 2009 and reminisced about how much they enjoyed the meet-ups. Both expressed an interest in increasing the human connection, and finding local people who are working in similar circumstances who might want to socialize and connect for business purposes. Checking in with Christopher Roy, one of the group’s founders of the now nearly 200 member networking group, he was keen to support the revival. While the group has come a long way from its humble beginnings of a handful of “techies” who met at local restaurants, the aims haven’t changed. In addition to connecting to with others for social or professional connections, there’s also an interest in strengthening the digital sector as an economic force, and connecting local businesses to much needed technical support. Digital businesses are light on the land, reduce the need to commute and offer working age islanders and families the ability to earn a decent living. Bringing younger people and new skills to the island, digital businesses are a great fit for Salt Spring.
The tradition of in-person meetings continues, beginning February 15th from 6:00 – 8:30 at Shipstones – we’d love to meet you. Mark your calendars for the 3rd Wednesday of each month at a different location. You can also join the Facebook group to join the conversation and events. Learn more and RSVP at saltspringdigital.org
Wondering if Salt Spring Digital is for you? The modern digital worker can be: a coder, a developer, a graphic designer, run an online store, a film-maker, a marketer, an educator, etc… Gone are the days where you had to speak tech language to be considered a digital worker. If you build things for online consumption, use an online space to market, sell or deliver an online service, work remotely or run a business with an e-commerce option, you should join Salt Spring Digital.