Remote participants, registration, and mailing lists -- unintended consequences

John C Klensin <john-ietf@jck.com> Sun, 03 April 2016 15:29 UTC

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Date: Sun, 03 Apr 2016 11:29:30 -0400
From: John C Klensin <john-ietf@jck.com>
To: 95attendees@ietf.org
Subject: Remote participants, registration, and mailing lists -- unintended consequences
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Hi.

Not to complain but to add to whatever consideration occurs this
week about getting remote participants, more evidence that these
things need to be thought through carefully has turned up in the
last 24 hours.

* Apparently, remote participants who have registered are listed
on the "registered attendees" list without any differentiation
from face to face attendees.  That has resulted in my getting
several "when can we meet up" messages and some confused people.
Not a big deal, but an unnecessary waste of people's time.  More
important, if questions arose in the future about who was, or
was not, at a particular meeting, it could lead to even more
confusion and inconvenience (e.g., IIR, registration records
have sometimes been the subject of subpoenas).

* When we register, we apparently automatically signed up for
the [95all] and allowed to check the box that gets us on the
[95attendees] mailing lists.  That is fine -- I used to have to
try to monitor the archives of [NNall] to be sure I didn't miss,
e.g., important schedule changes (although most of those are
copied to IETF-announce and/or the IETF discussion list).
Announcements of specially-formatted agendas, workshop and lunch
seminar announcements, and the like are as useful to those of us
who are remote as those who are present (even if relevant
sessions are not supported remotely, we know what we are
missing).  But the N/S ratio is incredible -- I really don't
need the regular extended  discussions of plug converters,
nearby restaurants, SIM cards, laundry, nearby ATMs, and so on.

So, for the future, if we are really going to do this remote
participant registration thing, it would be nice if someone
would really take responsibility for thinking through all of the
implications and take action on them.

To all who are in Buenos Aires, best wishes for a successful
meeting.  And to all who are participating remotely, let's hope
that these difficulties with registration are the last problems
of the week and that everything else --the actual feeds and
connections-- will go really smoothly.

    john