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Re: LWCE/SF 2005 Debian booth organization

On Wed, 6 Jul 2005, Mike Markley wrote:

On Mon, Jul 04, 2005 at 11:07:41PM -0700, Sean Perry <shaleh@speakeasy.net> wrote:
Joshua Kwan wrote:
* The T-shirts were a blast but we ran out really quickly. L/XL seemed
to be the most popular size, but we got a considerable number of >XXLs.
People expected them to be free, too.

my times have changed. We never had a problem getting $10 a shirt, $15
for the 2XX and larger.

We still don't. Just because people want something doesn't mean you have to give it to them. Even at $10 or $15, our biggest problem at the East Coast Linuxworld was running out of them too quickly.

I suspect that the reason people expected them to be free is that, well,
they're at a vendor expo. Most of the booths are occupied by for-profit
companies who have some sort of goodies to give away as advertisement,
whether it's pens or tshirts or stuffed animals or what have you.

The quality of expo freebies has steadily been going down since the golden age of dot-coms so people are getting psychologically adjusted to things not being free but they'll still take a mile if you give an inch. That's why I recommend asking for atlast $1 for CDs. This year in Boston, we only had one arsehole who took exception to this. Most people who find out the goodies aren't free will just put them down, smile, and walk away.

who don't know that Debian is a non-profit (or, at least, operates under
the auspices of one) are likely to view it as just another vendor here
at the conference. From that perspective, it's perfectly reasonable to
assume that the shirts are free.

They may be coming too fast for this, but you could always use the
request for a free shirt as an opportunity to explain the non-profit
status of Debian and the real and potential advantages therein :). Heck,
maybe even find a few willing donors.

My standard line is to ask people if they use Debian, and say "Support your favorite distro by purchasing a t-shirt" if they do or, "Would you like to support the noble cause of Free software by purchasing this nice t-shirt?" if they don't. People seem to respond warmly.

One more thing is that in CA as in MA, you probably can't "Sell" items without paying sales tax, but you can "offer them in exchange" for a "suggested donation."

Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar@debian.org>
La Salle Debain - http://www.braincells.com/debian/

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