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Re: [Debconf-discuss] proposals for DebConf14 +

Michael Banck <mbanck@debian.org> wrote:

>On Mon, Jan 14, 2013 at 08:49:21PM +0100, Daniel Pocock wrote:
>> b) in lieu of the above, Debian itself would guarantee to contribute
>> 50,000 (or maybe more) to DebConf (currently it is cost-neutral for
>> Debian) - so the bidders won't feel that they have to start with
>> each new DebConf year.  
>What do you mean with "contribute"?  Seed the bank account and get the
>money back later, or actually contributing to the conference that

Debconf would not return the money to Debian.  Debian would fund it by collecting the money from regular sponsors and also using surplus from previous events to smooth the cashflows for future events.  E.g. Any surplus from .ch could potentially help a Debconf14 in a venue more like Debconf12

>Either does not make a lot of sense to me in general, and certainly not
>on that level.

The DPL already approves the Debconf budget and the sponsors are giving their money because of the Debian brand.  So it does make sense for Debian to be in the loop, as well as the considerations above about smoothing cashflows.

>> Furthermore, they will be able to go to local authorities, venues,
>> and say "we have at least EUR 50,000 to spend and 300 people will
>> come, will you help our event?" and it sounds a lot
>> better than saying "we have no budget yet, but we want your help"
>Who would say "we have no budget yet, but we want your help"?
>Is there any evidence that this was actually a big problem with
>prospective sponsors this year or at one of the last years?

It is more of an issue for local development agencies, budgeting and communicating with potential venues.

The current team had a 400k CHF budget figure in one wiki page - having a defined Debian grant would help potential teams to focus more quickly

>> c) the bid teams would have to provide more evidence (e.g. final
>> prices and at least one major sponsor, or evidence of government
>> but those things would also be easier to get thanks to (b)
>I co-organized a bid for Debconf11 which did not win.  It was already a
>lot of work and time spent on it.
>I don't think we can expect people to come up with a perfect, directly
>executable bid for the bidding process, which would mean 1-3 other
>perfect, directly exectuable bids are for the bin and potentially a lot
>of time wasted that could be spent making Debian better or whatever.

A lot of time has been wasted in the current process.  It was observed that the preferred venue became a lot more flexible when a second possible venue was seriously discussed.  If two very strong bids are presented for Debconf14, then one of them could then become Debconf15 perhaps, so everybody wins in the end.

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