Re: [Mtgvenue] Updated potential meeting location list

John C Klensin <john-ietf@jck.com> Fri, 21 February 2020 19:22 UTC

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Date: Fri, 21 Feb 2020 14:22:31 -0500
From: John C Klensin <john-ietf@jck.com>
To: Fred Baker <fredbaker.ietf@gmail.com>
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Subject: Re: [Mtgvenue] Updated potential meeting location list
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--On Friday, February 21, 2020 09:54 -0800 Fred Baker
<fredbaker.ietf@gmail.com> wrote:

>...
> From my perspective, I would rather see people nominate cities
> they would like investigated than try to resurrect what is now
> old data.

Partially for the reason you give below, I don't think we should
be casually discarding cities where we have had multiple
successful experiences.  The list of those is not very long but
we know far more about them from actual meeting experience than
we are going to find out from any amount of investment spend on
site visits.  Whether the data are old enough to be irrelevant
is, of course, another issue.  I'd say "too old" for meetings
before about 2000 or 2005 but at least "maybe not" for most
recent ones; YMMD.

Minneapolis is probably not a good example because there are
many people who really liked it as a location and many who
really hate it.  It seems clear to me that there are enough
people in each group that trying to assess their relative sizes
would not be productive.  Oddly, if we pretended we had never
been there before and assessed it as a new location, I think it
would come out as "suitable", at least with adjustments for
season that would affect some other "suitable" places at least
as strongly.  

San Diego might be another interesting example: we have met
there several times (if one goes back before 2000, maybe as many
or more times than anywhere else).  There are direct
international air connections to both Europe and East Asia
(although not a huge number of destinations in either), and the
odds of getting snowed in are rather low.  But it isn't on the
list either. 

And, as you pointed out in your other note, if we are going to
rate Minneapolis as "unsuitable" because of issues with US visa
policies, we need to take every other city in the US off the
"suitable" list until those policies change or it is clear that
they are changing for the better.

> I also suspect that we will want to think in terms of a budget
> for exploring places. We could pretty quickly nominate any
> city that has an international airport, and task an intern
> with determining whether each city also has conference
> facilities of a certain size. That sounds simple and possible,
> but it would also mean that we suddenly have a whole lot of
> make-work that we don't know will go anywhere. I would suggest
> that we confine research to places potential hosts want to
> hold meetings and have reasonable transportation and
> conference facilities, and explore at most N options per unit
> time.

I generally concur, at least to the extent of believing it would
be useful to prioritize cities for exploration based on some
rational and consistent criterion so as to minimize the cost of
evaluations that are likely to be pointless.  I do think that
"we already know a lot because we've met there at least a couple
of times, especially if that is 'several times'" is a good
criterion for prioritization because a high-information
evaluation should be inexpensive whether it produces
"conclusively 'no'" (Orlando comes to mind but maybe it has its
fans too), "conclusively 'yes'", or "strong subjective feelings
that are too contradictory to easily reach a conclusion" (for
which Minneapolis is almost certainly an example). 

best.
   john