Re: IETF 62

John C Klensin <> Mon, 20 September 2004 11:06 UTC

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Date: Mon, 20 Sep 2004 06:58:48 -0400
From: John C Klensin <>
To: Lars Eggert <>, Sam Hartman <>
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--On Monday, 20 September, 2004 08:54 +0200 Lars Eggert
<> wrote:

>> Secondly, I'm concerned that people are proposing optimizing
>> for pleasant climate and good vacation spots.  I come to the
>> IETF to get work done; I'd rather be at meetings where the
>> other participants have the same goal.  We should be somewhat
>> careful of optimizing for enjoyable location.  I'd rather see
>> us optimize for who can attend and cost.
> If you have data that shows an inverse proportionality between
> the enjoyability of past locations and the generated IETF
> output, please post it.


I have no idea about actual IETF experience, but, based on
experience with other organizations and meetings of similar
technical focus, the key issue is not whether those who go can
get work done, or even whether some people decide to go it if is
a nice place.  Rather, it is the tendency of people who have to
review and approve travel to look at a destination, pronounce
the words "probable boggle" and then say "no".    And I've seen
enough situations in which that has occurred to make that a real

It probably isn't enough of a concern to say "we absolutely
should, or should not, meet there", but it should be a
significant consideration.

On other observation on the US situation.  In the few years, we
have had a significant problem with participants from some
countries getting to US meetings at all due to increasing
scrutiny of visa applications and consequent difficulties in
getting visas.  Sometimes, those delays have been equivalent to
visa denial, even when no formal denial occurs.  Those
restrictions are qualitatively different from, e.g., the
fingerprint issue, since they prevent someone from even making
the decision as to whether they are willing to put up with the
marginal aggravation and intrusion to attend.  Classes of IETF
participants are excluded entirely depending on their
nationality or normal residency, and that has a direct on IETF
openness and global participation.

That is, fwiw, I've been suggesting that we reduce the focus on
meetings in the US for a few years now.  As others have pointed
out, doing that isn't quite as easy as would appear to be the
case at first glance but, IMO, we should keep trying.


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