Since the economy continues to reside in the doldrums, most cable companies have cut back on non-essential projects, however do those reductions include conferences and expos? We will have the answer in a few days as the Cable Connection – Fall 2009 Partners & Events kicks off in Denver October 25-28 with a myriad of forums, conferences, and awards. There is a lot on the attendee plate scheduled within the six-day conference including, ACC’s General Session with NCTA’s James Assey; CEO Roundtable with Starz’s Bob Clasen, Jerald Kent, CEO Suddenlink, Paul Liao, CEO CableLabs, and Josh Sapan, CEO Rainbow Media.
This is just a small sample of the “fare” in store for registered attendees with the budgets and wisdom to both collaborate and take advantage of the knowledge offered by Cable Industry veterans. What are the perceptions of Cable Connection organizers?
Per Steve Jones, Executive Director of the Association of Cable Communicators , “we are projecting attendance of about 200 – 250, down about 30% from 2008. This is due to the economy; cable industry companies cutting back on travel and being outside the major populations centers on the East Coast. Additionally, for our folks in the past, Washington, D.C. has been a good draw since individuals also use the time in DC to visit with their national elected representatives and speak with the FCC.”
Among the highlights offered by the ACC will be the effective use of Web 2.0 tools as an additional line of communication, including how both reporters and customers are using this tool more often. In addition, more knowledge-based information will be forthcoming with case studies of innovative communications initiatives, and will include an update on what operators can expect from the Federal Government and the FCC. The conference will end with a look at “The Future of Communications” and how Web based tools will effect how all of us communicate in the near future.
Although the event is combining various organizations and sessions including ACC, CableLabs, NAMIC, Walter Kaitz Foundation, CABLECENTER, CTAM, SCTE Cable-Tec Expo, and WICT Tech It Out Breakfast, unless it is specifically necessary, it seems that operators will be limiting the number of employees attending the Denver, CO Expo with continuing concerns over spending in a tight economy. In my opinion, now is the time to spend the money to both educate and update employees on critical factors facing the industry in a time of increased competition? Unfortunately, it is always training and collaboration that takes the hit when times are tough. Let us hope this does not reflect on attendance numbers at Cable Connection – Fall 2009.