[OSGeo-Conf] roll up of my comments on the proposals and subsequent discussions

Darrell Fuhriman darrell at garnix.org
Mon Mar 2 13:48:27 PST 2015

As I mentioned in my previous e-mail, I apologize for being late to the party. I wanted to comment and ask questions, but I was on holiday and trying not to be logged in, so apparently missed the deadline to get my questions in.

1) I’m supremely disappointed that neither bid has committed to continuing the travel grant program we ran in 2014. It’s a small thing from a budgetary perspective, but so incredibly valuable for trying to improve the economic and demographic diversity of the conference and the community. I hope the winner will see fit to include this when they are selected.

2) Agree on the dislike of the % of sponsorship model. We explicitly rejected one PCO proposal we got for exactly the reasons others have outlined.

3) The venue scheduling issue is one I’ve raised before, and one reason I’ve pushed for moving the bidding up to at least 2 years out. Many similarly sized conferences are booked 2-3 years out, and we’re limiting our ability to find venues (and ultimately, to negotiate pricing) by waiting until the last minute (in conference terms) to choose a venue. (This is no fault to the bid proposers, BTW.)

4) Recording is very important, and I think we should make it mandatory. We have been consistently at 400-500 plays/week even after the initial post-conference drop off. FWIW, the cost of the live web streaming was negligible relative to the cost of doing the recording. (Which makes sense, most of the cost is in the labor.)   Many speakers value having recordings of their talks as well. 

5) Dublin: I think your estimate of complimentary admissions is low, especially if you intend to offer free admission to workshop instructors (which you should!) and to local committee members (which you also should!). The marginal cost of an attendee is not zero, and it’s important to not forget that.

That is all I have for now.


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