On Mon, Nov 16, 2015 at 9:06 PM, Jon Stanley <jonstanley(a)gmail.com> wrote:
On Mon, Nov 16, 2015 at 8:42 PM, Josh Boyer
> It's not double edged. It's exactly how we say the conference funding
> works. We fund people coming to provide the content of the
> conference. Speakers first, then if there are funds left over, we
> fund non-speakers. Which, aside from the lower number of non-speaker
> registrations anyway, is why the majority of the conference is
> attended by speakers.
I think that when you say "we" fund, you mean the Council and the
Premier Fedora Events budget. I think that Stephen was referring to
something broader. Lots of people's $DAYJOB doesn't see the
attending Flock (either as a speaker or not, actually) and forces them
to take vacation in order to do it. I suspect that this is equally
true for (some) Red Hatters that attend, but particularly for those
that are not speakers. Their $DAYJOB doesn't fund it as a business
trip (I suspect that I may be able to convince mine to at least not
make me take vacation now that I'm a member of the Server WG,
something that has demonstrable value, even if I am self-funding the
trip - though hopefully they'd pay for that as well!) .
How is that any different from any other conference? It isn't. You
can either convince your employer it is worth their time/money, or you
cannot. It is simply the nature of conference travel. Being a
speaker helps massively in most situations. Flock tries to make it
even better by not charging conference fees.
This speaks to my specific situation, but I'm certain that there
many others in the same situation - self-funding an expensive trip (at
least when it's on the opposite continent that they are) and taking
vacation time in order to better Fedora. Inspiring, but not exactly
fair in my mind.
I've paid out of pocket before as well. I did not feel slighted or
for it to be unfair. I felt strongly enough that it was worthwhile.
Fedora, for me, is inspiring. That people are willing to pay out of
pocket because we cannot afford to cover everyone's costs is even more
That said, I don't think that the conference itself should fund
folks, except to the extent that it is possible without compromising
other things - venue, etc. However, we should make it *much* easier
for folks to do a business justification to their employer of the time
that they spend working on Fedora, to include attending Flock. I so
happen to have a manager that "gets it" - not everyone is so lucky.
You say we need to make it easier. Great! I don't disagree at all.
Do you have an actual suggestion though?
Seriously, if we're being candid here, Flock is the Fedora conference.
There are employers that use Fedora (outside of Red Hat even!) and
wish it to improve for whatever reason, but most companies are
interested in technology that runs on top of the distros. And that
technology often is distro agnostic and often has it's own conference
if it is hot enough. Flock isn't comparable to LinuxCon, or
DockerCon, or whatever the hot new technology tomorrow will be.
Business justification for Flock is a tiny part of the overall Fedora
marketing and relevance problem. We're working on that, but it isn't
as simple as funding more people to attend Flock with money we don't