# administrivia

Ivan Reese

02/04/2020, 11:53 PM These folks are building a platform for organizing / running online conferences, meetups, video AMAs, 1-on-1 mixers, etc. I just had a call with their CEO, and they seem to have some tools that would be nice for doing things like the virtual symposium we did late last year. They are interested in trying things with our community. I'd like to gauge your interest. 1) They're very focused on mobile. Presenters can use a web app, but viewers need to use a mobile app. I think everyone needs to make an account, too (though I'm not positive). 2) Their business model is that viewers/attendees pay a small fee, and they take a 25% cut of that fee. The rest of the money goes to the organizers (so, me?). They might consider other payment models, like allowing me to pay them a single fee for hosting the event (Probably something like $50-100, I guess?), which would probably be money that comes from the (upcoming) Patreon, or perhaps from a sponsor if we found one. Interest? Thoughts? I want to do more events like that symposium, whether we go with some sort of richer platform like this or just stick with basic Hangouts or Zoom or whatever.
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Nick Smith

02/04/2020, 11:55 PM
I think relatively few people in our community would be willing to pay to watch a video conference. I also would want to engage (view/present) from my Mac, not my phone.
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What kind of benefits does their platform offer over Google hangouts and our existing/planned media platforms?
Perhaps if our community becomes "professional" enough in the future to run a large-scale virtual conference, then this platform might offer value and be a good way to raise funds.
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Ivan Reese

02/04/2020, 11:59 PM
Benefits are mostly integration (scheduling, video, chat, ticketing all in one) and rich messaging (Eg; for the video AMA, nice tools for both question askers and the person being asked)
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Not sure that we need that stuff, but it's nice to have options. Personally I find Hangouts lacking.

Steve Dekorte

02/05/2020, 12:56 AM
Iā€™d give it a try
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Breck Yunits

02/06/2020, 10:09 PM
The fee model actually might make it more fun. People might put more effort into it if they are paying for it (and know other people are paying too). I have no idea how it would turn out but I would not be surprised if you could raise a lot more money this way for the community than Patreon. Just because IRL people seem to pay for live events (conferences, concerts, happy hours, fundraisers, etc)
The first virtual symposium was fun but if you decide to do another I think it would be a worthwhile experiment to try charging (a small reasonable amount) and see how it goes


02/07/2020, 2:38 AM
Would certainly work as a filter: has pluses and minuses.


02/09/2020, 1:16 PM
I guess one of the objectives of the symposium is to widely share ideas and demos. And charging the view will lower the audience.
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Ivan Reese

02/10/2020, 4:41 PM
Yeah, I can't imagine how charging admission wouldn't be a lose-lose-lose. 1) Audience loses because they have to pay for something that, realistically, we'd otherwise offer for free 2) Presenters lose because their presentations don't reach as large an audience 3) Organizers (myself and whoever else involved) lose because they have to justify why this thing that could be free has a price, and thus need to articulate what we're doing with the money. If we give the money to presenters that's a hassle (and it probably wouldn't be very much money), and if we keep the money that looks like rent-seeking. The only reason we'd do this is because this startup wants us to do it. That's no good, especially when there are perfectly viable free options.
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Breck Yunits

02/11/2020, 3:53 AM
I think paying to watch presentations doesn't sound like fun. However, paying $10 for some type of "virtual networking hour", where everyone is participating, could be a fun way to spend an hour as well as a fun way to raise funds for @Ivan Reese and the group.
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