Penguicon 7.0 Concom Meeting
July 4, 2008, 3 PM
Introductions being concluded, general mayhem ensued as the group tried to reorganize itself and obtain agendas to loosely refer to during the remainder of the meeting.
Chuck brought 10 copies of current budget, which will be submitted to the board as the intended budget in 3 weeks. (Later found out the meeting is in 1 week, not 3.)
If changes are needed, email firstname.lastname@example.org. Ron suggested that the budget be sent to the Concom list. Chuck agreed to send the budget for review by Concom members.
Anyone who needs to spend money this year must make certain it is included in the budget this week. Also, items in current budget need to be reviewed for accuracy, and missing data added (example: income for T-shirts). Budget is currently tight, so any expenditures must be sent to Chuck to be shoehorned in. Budget may not be changed in the future, depending upon board review.
Matt will make a plan for T-shirts and look over storage to see if there is anything better we can do.
Limey and Jer are the only ones who have provided Chuck information. In other examples, Eco track currently has no items in the budget.
Current total expenditures: $33,000 Current expected income: $31,000
Columns reading “Cross Charges” and “Cross Charges 2” - remember to add in if you are doing something for another area. Discuss it with them before you charge it to their budget.
Clipboard for Matt will be added to the budget, but the headset mike will have to wait. :)
General discussion of headsets for discussion over the weekend: approx. 6 – 8 individuals raised their hands that they would use one if we had them. Jer will look into costs for rental, purchase. Ops needs at least 1, pref 2 so they can give the floater to Registration as needed. Others: hotel liaison, con chair, program ops. Perhaps secretary of violence. Consuite – no, they have a phone, not track heads, nor GoH liaisons, nor board members.
Jer will investigate the price on 10. We can adjust down to 6 or so after. This would be a multi-year thing if we buy, so shouldn't be part of this year's budget, but would need board approval.
Jer now wants to draw a salary. One bid was submitted for $7.00. :)
Jer can get an awesome price on postcards. Matt to send publications person the copy with which to make an image for front and back. Need two versions – one to mail, one to set in stacks at shops, etc. (The latter does not need space left for a mailing address.)
$500 set aside for advertising. Why won't we advertise? Because we really need someone to help us determine where best to spend this effectively. This budget keeps dropping because it's not getting done. Jer and Scott volunteer to take care of marketing/advertising if they can add to the budget for it. One thing we've wanted to do for a long time is send a postcard to everyone on the mailing list, and clear out the deadwood from the list. Jer will send out mailer, but won't process returns to clean up mailing list.
Matt emailed our head of Registration, Aaron Thul, to request that a new registration page be written for the new website. Aaron said he'd do it in a week. Rumor has that he's writing it in ASP.Net.
(Jer has written a page about the new hotel and will email it to Ron immediately to go on the site.)
Registration page: Brazilian Beef
Are rates set for Brazilian Beef, LAN Party, and Geeks With Guns? (These also go on the registration page.) Chuck suggests bumping the price by $2.00 for beef. Jer said that we should offer more food (potato, corn) to justify the additional cost. $8 for just beef isn't worth it. Jer votes against increasing the price at all. Any increase in beef price right now is more than off set by what we made.
Grill prep wants appropriate tools, cutting boards, additional man power. Jer suggests cutting the meat in advance, which shouldn't affect the flavor and will improve the cooking process on the day of. Jer will tell the hotel to give us steak knives as well so that there is no post-cooking cutting either. Chuck says the last few days prior to Penguicon has traditionally been nuts. This may leave scant time for the prep suggested. Matt wants someone who is not central to Penguicon be the person in charge of beef prep. Asked if Lucy could do it. Lucy said that she may be at clinics and doesn't know her schedule, so may not even be able to attend Penguicon. However, if no one has volunteered by November, she'll check her clinic schedule to see if she can take on BB. (Jer also said she could bring a cow if she has access to one.)
As for knives, cutting boards, tongs, and flippers, Jer suggested this be included in the hospitality budget. If this is an ongoing useful item, let's just work it into the budget and hold onto these. Jer suggests having a BB meeting to figure out where to obtain the supplies, both physically and with respect to budget.
General consensus: don't raise the price, leave it at $6.
Registration page: LAN party – Dave and Nick
What price for the registration page? Is last year's price why we didn't get quite as many people as we expected? No.
One failure point is that people don't expect to sit there all weekend, so they don't bring their computes. Possibly expand sponsors' involvement to expand the number of systems they bring, so as to increase involvement. When everyone was playing the same pre-announced game together, every machine was rented out. Perhaps schedule tournaments – Dave and Nick to create a schedule – and have prizes
(Discussion of pronunciation of Ken Konarzewski's last name.)
Cygames has built a console pit for LAN parties where people can come in and check out a game for Wii, 360, PS3, and 2 or 3 legacy systems and play games. All they want in return is to hang banners. This will be in the same room as the LAN party.
Price for LAN party will be left the same - $10. Rental machines were $5 hour, but people stayed for more than one hour. (Money went straight to MythLogic, not to us, and they didn't care.) Suggest starting LAN a bit later on Friday. Throw MythLogic on our website as a sponsor if they can up the number of rental machines
Plug for an MPCON event taking place the same weekend as ConVersation.
Registration page: Geeks with Guns
Leave price the same? Matt will email to Garrett Kajmowicz to confirm.
Assistant to conchair is now Bryan Robinson. He was a volunteer at the convention and put in a ton of hours. This weekend he is busy with things out of state or he would be here today.
Need a volunteer to collect photos and put them in one gallery, then embed it in the website. Ron indicated that there is already a plug-in that pulls anything from Flickr that pulls photos tagged with Penguicon. This doesn't pull non-Flickr stuff. Jer suggested that we ask people to upload things to a Penguicon set on Flickr. We don't have one. Free accounts are limited in the number of photos that can be uploaded. How much does an annual subscription cost? $20. Chuck suggested that he should add a Penguicon Flickr account to the budget and we agreed.
Video should be pulled from YouTube, but the plugin Ron is using for this isn't working. Content is pulled, but not pushed to the page. Ron is looking for a fix for this.
Angie Fox isn't here. Matt will email Angie Fox to follow up.
Bill Korsak would like game dealers to be in the Dealer Room and not have any in the game room. Agreed. Give them a discount if they run a certain number of games? This should be added to the next agenda, for discussion when Angie is available.
Why don't we go to local businesses to request that they advertise? No one was willing and had the sales ability in the past. Now, we have Scott Kennedy and Tyler Haske who will look for local businesses to advertise in the program book.
Rate change for space in the program book? Jer will benchmark our rates (http://pc6.penguicon.org/advertise.php ) against other cons (Marcon, etc.).
The goal is for advertising to offset the entire cost of printing. If we are still paying, we either aren't charging enough, or we aren't putting in enough advertisers.
Suggestion: Charge extra for time specific advertising. Example: By the morning programming, have an ad for a breakfast place.
Allison asked what Jer thought about the bags that Marcon handed out. Jer likes bags. It's one of the sponsorship things we looking at.
Also mentioned that if we get swag, we should look at it in advance and figure out how we are going to hand it out.
Jer and Scott will make a prospectus oriented toward face to face conversations with potential sponsors. Goes along with the “What is Penguicon?” book project. They'll knock this one out in the next few weeks. Plan B is for Jer to write some entertaining, but expletive laden, copy. Just kidding.
Matt will send an email to the man of a thousand names about ribbons. On the topic of ribbons, we have a $200 line item for ribbons. We are printing a thousand “relationship status” badge ribbons to put in a box at the end of registration. These are the black ribbons with a series of capital letters. Available, Monogamous, Polyamorous, Married, Celibate, so on and so forth. A huge poster above the box explains the code. Use the provided black magic marker to cross out the code letters that don't apply to you.
(Dan sat in Jer's lap on the love seat. Matt went to get his camera but missed it.)
Courtney Holloway says the local writers she spoke to claim to have gotten little benefit from the Writer Workshop we have had for the last few years. Is she allowed to modify it? Matt says as Literature Track head she has full authority to shake things up and make it fresh. May want to consider highlighting this. Courtney to email Matt a blurb about what is new and different to go on the features page.
Bill Korsak recommends to put an insert in the program with just the game schedule.
Matt described the binary solar system of Penguicon. Orbiting twin stars of science fiction and open source software. A music planet, a comic planet, a gas giant of gaming. Asteroid belt of food and drinks. An Oort cloud of every topic someone wants to bring just one time. An arrow-shaped sign reading 'center of the universe', pointing to the hot tub. This will be made into a web comic on About Penguicon page. Send screen shots to Scott while we are waiting to complete it. Matt noted that the planet graphics are taking a lot of time which is why it isn't on the website yet.
Live Podcast are feature worthy. Jer claims he will be running nude through a live video podcast. ;) Ecogeeks health/eco track is new. Alternate reality games. OSBP 2.0? Just kidding. Conchair says no.
Do we feature the mascots in any way? We're going to try to do something at opening ceremonies. Cage match was suggested.
In an email, Laurie Adams suggested EFF and comics legal defense fund, which we have done before. Suggestions: Tom Smith hospital bills. Matt to send suggestion to the auction person, Laurie Adams, and see what she thinks. Greg Williams will be an auctioneer.
Discussion of webcomic programming ideas postponed until Programming Meeting. Webcomic artists tend to attend Penguicon? Who has confirmed for this year? Molly is not here to tell us, because she is under house arrest in an uprising in Mongolia. discussion of webcomic artists redacted from notes
Official agenda is complete! No one had anything to add! And it only took 2 hours. A programming meeting will be scheduled within the next three weeks, per Randy. Look for an email from Randy.
Next meeting will be in August, at the hotel. We need to give them a range of choices for dates so that they can set up the area to walk through. 9Th, 10th, and 16th, in that order, will be presented as possible dates for the hotel. Send questions in advance for hotel staff for Jer. If you don't need to be on the walk through, please plan to leave at the end of the meeting so that everyone isn't parading through the hotel. Date will be confirmed by Jer within the next week.
possible dates to hold the next meeting in the hotel, followed by a walk through .