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Re: [DebConf 23] Guidance for remote speakers

On Tue, Aug 1, 2023 at 8:13 AM <stefanor@debian.org> wrote:
> Hi Lucas (2023.08.01_12:35:03_+0000)
> > > I think it worked acceptably at DebConf 22. *But* it takes quite a bit
> > > of time from core-video team people to get setup. So, if we're going to
> > > support it, I think it would make sense to batch all the remote-speaker
> > > events in a single room (as close to the video team HQ as possible) on
> > > the same day.
> >
> > That would be definitely doable. The only talk which will be fully remote is
> > the one proposed by Ben (mentioned above). The 2 others have in-person
> > speakers, so if we want we can ask them to present without the remote
> > co-speaker.

Old News:
1. It is doable.  If it was not doable, it would be easy to say No
because it can't be done.
2. It is work that is not well defined, documented, and "it depends"
on details that may not be understood beforehand.
 There are a bunch of things (not well defined or documented) that
need to be done by one or more people.  Historically the work doesn't
get done ahead of time and it falls on the video team who says "I wish
someone had done this thing weeks ago..."

New news:
On site presenter + remote presenter, in front of live audience ... is
new and more complicated.

Good News:
The onsite presenter can do whatever they want with their laptop
hooked up. If they  want to run video conference thing like Jitsi and
hook up their own web cams, microphones, audio devices, etc. as part
of their presentation, no one will stop them.  They can expect just as
much help as any other presenter with hooking up their laptop to the
room's AV system.

News we don't want to hear about:
Relying on more help and brian storming as part of getting set up for
their talk 5 min before their talk starts, will not go well. Trying to
get this worked out the week before is also not a good plan.  No one
should expect anything to be working until the start of the opening
session.  In the past, things have happened like
Our equipment is sitting in customs waiting for someone to show up
with a nice enough car.   Wat?
The local company supplying the equipment does not show up until the
morning of the first talk.  Grrr...
The video team not allowed to setup the room until the scheduled time
of the room reservation, which was the scheduled time of the talk.

Encouraging news:
I would propose allowing remote talks with the following requirement:
The presenter designates a person who will be at the event to be their

It is this person's responsibility to "make the talk happen."   If
nothing else, they will show up with their laptop and play a video.
They can do Q&A by forwarding the question to someone offsite (the
remote presenter.)  If they want to ask the video team's help for
something different, they can work that out.    The "something
different" should be the thing that has been done a few times and
someday may evolve into normal offering.

Last year there was a remote talk that did not happen.   I'm not clear
why it did not happen, but if there had been a person in the room
making sure the talk happened, it probably would have happened.

> I don't know if it's on your list but the tech-ctte meeting will also
> have most of the panel remote.
> > > I advocate requiring pre-recording talks for remote presenters.
> > > With a deadline during DebCamp to deliver recordings, so that they can
> > > be checked and re-recorded/edited if necessary.
> >
> > Sure, we can request that.
> We also need a commitment from the content team to take the lead in
> reviewing these recordings and working with the presenters.
> Ideally one person can take the lead on this, I guess.


Having an on site person does nothing to ensure the video quality is
ok.  It would be nice if that person worked one on one with the
presenter, and I would certainly keep them in the loop about the
review and critique process.

After a few years, maybe there will be a "remote presenter advocate
pool"  that can take on remote talks.  People who have done this a few
times and know what is going on.

> Historically, this has fallen on the video team, during DebCamp when we
> are usually busy trying to get set up for the event, and don't have time
> to do the work.


The video team's priority is to make sure the whole event happens with
a high degree of certainty.    We will never reach 100% certainty, so
there are always things we can do to get closer, like installing
monitoring or improving the docs or training new people.

An individual talk will likely never be a top priority until its
scheduled time, and then it is too late to fix problems.

Carl K

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