The other day, Stephen Arnold published a post entitled “Conference Spam or Conference Prime Rib” bemoaning “an increasing amount of conference spam” in the enterprise search space. Sharing his frustration with the marketing and hype that passes for technical discussion in this field, I posted a comment extolling the upcoming SIGIR Industry Track as an opportunity to bring some substance to the conversation.
To my delight, Arnold included the comment in a follow-up blog entry today. While I don’t take this as an explicit endorsement, I find his arguments very consonant with the case I made in my call to action several months ago. Moreover, Arnold doesn’t mince words when it comes to criticizing trade shows in which “the real losers are the attendees who spend money and invest time to hear lousy speakers or sales pitches advertised as original, substantive talks.”
Over the next months, I’m attending the Enterprise Search Summit, presenting at the Infonortics Search Engine Meeting, and organizing the SIGIR Industry Track. I’m also presenting at Discover, Endeca’s annual user conference. At all of these events, I expect substance, not warmed-over sales pitches. Hopefully these two posts on Arnold’s widely read blog will help inspire such an outcome, or at least will serve to shame some of the worst offenders.