February 24, 2012
Bronze is Wonderful and Represents More Than Just a Few Dollars
Yesterday, Joe Hodnicki wrote a post stating Thomson Reuters (TR) was "...doing the AALL Sponsorship thing on the cheap." Yes, it is a fact that TR is listed as a Bronze Sponsor for the AALL Conference which AALL defines as being in the $5,000-$24,999 range. But it is also a fact that AALL does not take into account the following events which TR is also paying for (in whole or in part) at the Conference this year:
1. The annual Thomson Reuters Customer Appreciation Reception to which all librarians at the conference are invited. I had a fantastic time at last year's event at the Reading Terminal Market and I can only imagine how much that event cost. And I also know TR let the event run about an hour past its scheduled end time because everyone was having such a blast and incurred even more costs as a result.
2. PLL SIS Summit Luncheon on Saturday to which all summit attendees will be invited
3. Conference of Law Library Educators Breakfast Roundtable
4. Academics and Government Librarians Luncheon and Speaker
5. ALLUNY/LLAGNY?NJLLA Reception
6. Government Librarians Leadership Breakfast and Meeting
If AALL did count all of these events TR would be well over the Gold Sponsorship level. Why doesn't AALL count these events? For that answer you will have to ask the AALL leadership. But my point is that regardless of whether or not they are counted TR is certainly not doing the conference "on the cheap".
As LLAGNY president this year I have gotten a much better understanding of the sponsorship that many vendors, including TR, provide to librarian organizations so that we can hold events, programs and give out grants, awards and scholarships. So on behalf of myself (and not on behalf of any organizational position that I hold) I want to say THANK YOU to all of the vendors for your sponsorship. (Caren Biberman)
Caren and Cheryl...don't try reasoning with Joe or attempting in anyway to answer him with actual facts. He prefers to ignore the facts and just rant and rave. I once suggested that Joe just pick up the phone and call someone at West/Lexis to ask his questions, and then post, however, this would not serve his purposes. I view Joe like the National Enquirer or some other tabloid, entertaining but full of crap. The Three Geeks or Jason Wilson or Jean O'Grady are much more interesting and actually view the issues from all sides.
I would LOVE to see Joe's reaction if West cancelled the party (which I see he attends) and held it in another city at another time other than during AALL, which he seems to be suggesting. It certainly would be cheaper for West!
-- KC, I have attended the "West Party" sometimes (eg NOLA, DC), sometimes not (eg Denver, Philly). And I would be fine with West cancelling its event and using the money instead to sponsor AALL sessions. The fact is that most vendors spend money outside of the sponorship opportunities AALL solicits contributions. The fact also is that AALL publishes the list and contributions for sponsored funding which is what I cited for the offical tally. -- Joe
Posted by: KC | Feb 24, 2012 9:23:56 AM
Thank-you Caren for elaborating and clarifying! I agree with you completely. All vendors sponsoring events of any kind as well as offcial AALL conference sponsorships should be commended not criticized! These sponsorships help to defray the individual attendees personal or firm paid expenses via less meals, drinks etc. and provide great opportunities for all to mingle and network with our colleagues and the vendor reps too.
Posted by: Cheryl Niemeier | Feb 24, 2012 6:10:28 AM
I agree with you Caren. I don't see why, for example, Saturday events sponsored by TR are not counted. Of course, Saturday events like the PLL SIS Summit are not included in the offical programming because the Summit has been a work-around the annual meeting programing system. AALL would have to admit this to be the case, I guess, to count sponsorship contributions for the tally used to identify levels of sponsorship.
During the regular annual meeting, Lexis and Wolters Kluwer co-sponsor the Annual Meeting Opening General Session/Keynote Speaker and, for example, Innovative Interfaces sponsors a Joint Reception of the TS/OBS/RIPS/CS SISs.
However, the West party is just the "West Party." A vendor's customer appreciation reception is just that. Every vendor can conduct one of those and it has nothing to do with AALL. It just happens to located in the same city during the annual meeting.
All AALL has to do is organize an "all members reception" or some such thing and characterize it as a sponsorship opportunity with a target contribution level. Then, whomever offers the most cash would get credit or co-credit as joint sponsors. And that gets added to the tally for sponsorship level status.
That, however, would not eliminate the opportunity for vendors to offer customer appreciation events, which are not sponsorship opportunities, nor in my opinion should be counted toward sponsor contributions because each vendor can conduct one by its own choice to spend as much money as it want to as part of its parallel schedule of events outside of AALL.
The "West Party" may be fun but it is solely at West's discretion to offer it, what to provide at it, where it will be held, and how long the party will last. I recall one year, DC?, when West shut down the party exactly on schedule ... a first in recent memory at that time. I remember it clearly because a colleague and I picked up the $100-plus bar tab afterwards as we all scratched our heads of that -- but, that was West's call. Joe
Posted by: Joe Hodnicki | Feb 24, 2012 5:47:33 AM