The Social Media Valley, or Long Island can certainly claim some bragging rights with this professional. Jeff Pulver has not only been a contributor to the Digital Age, but a visionary leader in communications (or also the communication tools of Social Media) and specifically the power it has given to people. Jeff’s professional contributions would make him seem like a unreachable giant, but I can tell you first hand that he is all about people. Rarely do you find someone so profound that is down to earth, let alone so approachable that he will greats you in casual clothes with a warm smile and a hand out.
Growing up in Kings Point, New York, Jeff Pulver got involved with computers when he was 17. Later, while working at his first job, an accounting firm, he developed and founded Spreadsheet Solutions Corp. an add-on to Microsoft Excel and Lotus 1-2-3, which he wrote. He also invented the CellSocket – a device which allows receiving and making cell phone calls through land lines.
Becoming interested in the possibilities of Internet Phone, a field that was unregulated at the time, Jeff Pulver put his money where his mouth is and in 1995 started a company that will go on to become Vonage, the biggest VoIP provider. He stayed as minority shareholder and member of the board until 2002.
Jeff was the head writer of what is called “Pulver Order” about internet communication, which had become the basis for the 2004 FCC ruling regarding Internet Protocol (IP) communications. Helping shape the VoIP landscape, Jeff set his sights on other implementations of internet communication.
In a 2006 Wall Street Journal profile he talked about Internet Video. “The same DNA that disrupted the telecom industry is well on its way to totally revolutionizing the way the TV, film, and broadcast industry is going to be.” He says in the article.
Seeing himself as an agent of change, he continued in The Wall Street Journal article, his mission is to identify the next big thing in technology.
Jeff Pulver proved himself right when a few years later the “Arab Spring” came to life, facilitated by social media.
For years now, Jeff Pulver organizes and hosts the #140Conf in different cities around the world. In those conferences he supplies the platform and invites speakers for short presentations and discussions about the impact of the internet on different aspects of our lives; on education, media, news, and business. He calls those conferences “The State of NOW”.
“We are living through what is a truly social revolution.” He says in an interview from a conference in Tel Aviv, Israel on November 7, 2011. “What happens when you are living in a world where hundreds of millions of people can discover each other and communicate directly? What do people feel when they connect, engage and every voice matters? People discover that they can stand up and affect a change without really knowing that they are doing it.”
Beside the conferences, Jeff Pulver invests in start-ups: Bloom Studio, BloggersBase, SemantiNet and Seesmic among others. He lives in New York with his wife and twin boys.
Here is another Great VIdeo recordning from UStream – 140Conf NYC
The Next 140Conf in NYC is June 19 – 20