Frustrated, and it hasn’t even started yet.

February 2, 2009 § Leave a comment

An open letter to those in charge of the TCEA conference.

Dear Colleagues,

I understand (sort of) the need for you to be more strict on registration for your conference. You need to get paid, and sometimes, school districts drag their feet on this sort of thing.  However, you must realize that you are dealing with school districts.  Government institutions.  They are slow by nature.  And messing with the people who really want to go to your conference isn’t going to do anything but make less people attend the conference.  Which means less money for you.  Which also means a smaller, less enjoyable conference for those who actually do get to attend.

It seems as though you’ve decided to make things infinitely more difficult for attendees this year.  For example, there was no way to register after January 9.  No forms to download, no way to even indicate that you wanted to attend.  This makes it difficult for those of us who weren’t on top of their game to convince their districts that, yes, we actually are going somewhere with that PO you’re going to give us.  And I won’t even get started about the mess I think you’ve created by forcing people to register onsite after January 9.

The program this year is really awful.  First of all, you don’t list any room numbers or descriptions for the concurrent sessions – at least not in the version you’ve posted online.  Your answer to this is that you can view session descriptions on the web site.  Except, once I’m at the conference, and I wind up in a session that I don’t like (or get shut out of a session because it’s full), I don’t have time to open a laptop (if I’m carrying one around) go to the web site, search through the names of the other session that sound like they might be good, then click on them to read the description, decide if I really want to go to that or not, then find the room number.  It’s not easy.  The old program had everything I needed at a glance.  This year’s program frustrates me.

Changes can be good, TCEA, but when you’re making things hard for the people who pay good money to attend your conference, well, that’s not good.



EDIT 2-3-09: OK, I finally have the paper copy of the program in my hands…much better.  Titles, room numbers and descriptions all in one place.  How hard would it have been to publish that online, TCEA?


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