Re: [nyhackr] Meetup attendance; new mandatory fee

From: user 2.
Sent on: Sunday, January 15, 2012 7:18 PM
I agree. Another method is to actually count attendance and overbook based on past experience, and be generous with people on the wait list, who may be the ones who are anxious to attend, while the others are just routinely saying "yes, I'll go" but have other things come up.  

In other words, treat people equally, even those who show up at the last minute; don't turn them away out of "principle" when there are empty seats. 

The Met Opera has people not enter after a show begins until the first break / applause.  

Sometimes people, especially NY'ers have so many unexpected things pop up, that they can't attend and can't let you know; e.g.: subway delay, crisis at the office, medical emergency , sick kid/wife/friend, rain without an umbrella (we don't have cars, as in the suburbs), too hungry to make it on time, forgetfulness, multiple calendars (work, home, iPhone, DayTimer).  

And it happens even to me with the best of intentions:  few of us are perfect, even if we try to be. 

Oh, the fee is ok. But I'm saying there are alternate methods. Wealthier people won't care about wasting $20, while $5 may be a lot if you're a student or unemployed and also have to pay transportation, which if it's a taxi is another $10 to $20 each way. 


Regards, Pete Lindner...
Sent from my iPhone[masked]

On Jan 14, 2012, at 5:04 PM, Sal Leggio <[address removed]> wrote:

Thanks, Drew.
That will make it easier to get on the list! I am often closed out.


From: jim greensberg <[address removed]>
To: [address removed]
Sent: Saturday, January 14,[masked]:55 PM
Subject: RE: [nyhackr] Meetup attendance; new mandatory fee

I hear you Drew. I just tought of sendind you a thank you and cheer up message! 
 
-------- Original Message --------
Subject: [nyhackr] Meetup attendance; new mandatory fee
From: Drew Conway <[address removed]>
Date: Fri, January 13,[masked]:39 am
To: [address removed]

All,

It is with regret and disappointment that I write this email.  For many months I have been frustrated by the chasm that exists between the number of people that RSVP for our meetup, and the number of warm bodies that show up at the event.  I have tried several tactics to shrink this divide: change venues to a more central location, take attendance, public shame---but, nothing seems to have worked.

Last night we had 100 people RSVP 'Yes' for the event in less than 24 hrs of posting it, and ended up with another 40-or-so on the wait list.  In the meantime, several people emailed me asking if they could be "last minute adds." I obliged when I could, yet none of those people showed up.  Also, 65 of all the RSVPs for last night indicated that they would coming early for pizza. By 7:30 we had a crowd of roughly 50 (if I am being generous), and about 15 came early for  pizza.  You don't have to go to the New York Open Statistical Programming Meetup to recognize the failure in those numbers.  While we have very generous support from Revolution Analytics, their contributions only offsets the cost of pizza, videography equipment and software, and web hosting I purchase to support our meetup.

Given the current situation, I have decided to make the registration fee mandatory for all RSVPs.  I always viewed this as a last-ditch option, and here we are.  This is the only credible commitment device Meetup provides, and I am now forced to use it.  The most immediate consequence of this is that if you have already RSVP'ed for future meetups you will have to re-register and pay the fee.

Finally, for those of you that indicated your interest in Mike's talk last night---which was brilliant--but were not in attendance; the video has been posted online: http://vimeo.com/35005701

I look forward to seeing you at a future meetup.


- Drew




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