[Yapc-na-organizers] YAPC Auctions

Jim Brandt cbrandt at buffalo.edu
Fri Apr 17 04:34:52 PDT 2009

Daniel J. Wright wrote:
> Hello,
> I'm seeking historical information about YAPC auctions.   Most
> importantly:  Who runs them, and where does the money go?
> The issue:  We'd rather not have to deal with doing an auction this year. 
> There are a few reasons:
> 1.  They take up a lot of time and it appears that few attendees seem to
> enjoy sitting the entire way through.

I think the key observation here is "the entire way through." I think 
most people find them fun, but they can drag on longer than necessary. 
Keeping it fun and shorter would be ideal.

> 2.  Getting cash sponsorship for YAPC is more difficult in our present
> economic situation.  The option of an in-kind donation for the auction is
> a very attractive alternative to prospective sponsors, which we don't
> want.

The only danger here is that the other option is to not donate at all. 
Given the economy, I'm thinking taking in-kind donations might be a more 
attractive option and a creative way to make up for companies who just 
don't have the cash this year.

> 3.  Somebody has to take the time to organize the auction.

True, but it has been a regular part of YAPC and it's part of the job of 
organizing and running a YAPC.

> So, ideally, we'd like to either do away with the auction, or make some
> major changes to it.   But before making any decisions, we'd like to gain
> a little better understanding of what we are dealing with.

It may be ideal for the organizers from a planning perspective, but as 
has been mentioned, the auction has generated fairly significant cash to 
help support YAPC in past years. In a way, it subsidizes the cost of 
YAPC by having people who have the cash bid on things. If you were going 
to consider not holding the auction, you would need a really clear 
financial plan that indicates where the extra cash would come from.

Jim Brandt
The Perl Foundation
email: cbrandt at perlfoundation.org

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