Should Wired get a press pass to Mix?

Hmmm, I haven’t gotten a pass to the now sold out Mix07 just like Fred Vogelstein, writer at Wired, finds himself wanting. But Jeff Sandquist is having a bit of fun asking the community whether or not he should get a free pass.

Speaking of which, I don’t have a pass to Mix07 either. I still am going, though. Instead of going into the conference, though, I’m just going to hang out in the hallway and do some sort of hallway cam like I did last week at the Web 2.0 conference. It’s my little protest against expensive conference passes to hear about something new Microsoft wants me to talk about anyway.

That said, if I end up getting a free pass, should I go inside? I’ll let my readers decide. Personally I think we should put a Ustream.tv camera on Mike Arrington’s head so we can all watch what it’s like to interview Ray Ozzie on stage. Would you watch that? πŸ™‚

UPDATE: Loren Heiny doesn’t have a ticket either, but will be hanging out in the hallway. Great, we’re gonna have an unconference live hallway outside the event. It’ll be like the Oscars where the stars get interviewed before they head into the event. Heheh.

52 Replies to “Should Wired get a press pass to Mix?”

  1. So why does Mix matter anyways? Silverlight just copying Flash video tricks, coughing up a VC-1 player, long after the train already left the station. That the main attraction? Heart be still.

    So poking fun of the press and dishing up details of private conversations, falls under the definition of “transparency”? This at a closed event? Irony, no? πŸ˜‰

    They should have been PROACTIVE offering the Wired Editors passes beforehand, why make the press do the legwork? They get invited to tons of things, keeping a decent schedule is half impossible. That’s an arrogant and stupid strategy…making the press jump thru hoops, you should bend over backwards to get them to come, not playing the ‘coolest party in town’ fakery.

    Hey, while you are at it, send him his Press “FBI file”, like they mistakenly did with Fred Vogelstein…now that would be “radical transparency”. πŸ™‚

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  2. So why does Mix matter anyways? Silverlight just copying Flash video tricks, coughing up a VC-1 player, long after the train already left the station. That the main attraction? Heart be still.

    So poking fun of the press and dishing up details of private conversations, falls under the definition of “transparency”? This at a closed event? Irony, no? πŸ˜‰

    They should have been PROACTIVE offering the Wired Editors passes beforehand, why make the press do the legwork? They get invited to tons of things, keeping a decent schedule is half impossible. That’s an arrogant and stupid strategy…making the press jump thru hoops, you should bend over backwards to get them to come, not playing the ‘coolest party in town’ fakery.

    Hey, while you are at it, send him his Press “FBI file”, like they mistakenly did with Fred Vogelstein…now that would be “radical transparency”. πŸ™‚

    Like

  3. Isn’t the point of the free media pass to give the media a chance to learn what’s going on and talk about it. The media will spread the story to those who aren’t able to spend the money to get to the conference. It’s a good thing for whoever is putting on the event.

    If I were the conference host, I’d give Wired and any other media the red carpet on the event, regardless of whether it were sold out or not. There’s probably room for one more person. And I wouldn’t hang the writer out to dry in the process, either.

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  4. Isn’t the point of the free media pass to give the media a chance to learn what’s going on and talk about it. The media will spread the story to those who aren’t able to spend the money to get to the conference. It’s a good thing for whoever is putting on the event.

    If I were the conference host, I’d give Wired and any other media the red carpet on the event, regardless of whether it were sold out or not. There’s probably room for one more person. And I wouldn’t hang the writer out to dry in the process, either.

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  5. Personally I’d rather all the passes go to actual developers and designers instead of reporters and “the press”. An actual developer’s perspective is a lot more useful to me than a pundit giving their spin on a technology that they only have a tenious grasp on at best.

    I’ve read so many armchair summaries about Silverlight by people that obviously haven’t even installed the WPF/e CTP that it makes me wish Microsoft wouldn’t even issue press releases to the media about these things. It ends up doing more harm than good because people that know very little about programming end up parroting what some *other* person that knows very little about programming has blogged about the subject.

    If another developer that is more concerned about usability than “what’s cool” at the moment has a positive or negative take on what comes out of Mix’07 that’s a lot more insightful for me as a developer. I’d much rather read a real devs take on a new technology, whether it be Apollo, Rails, Silverlight or whatever.

    I also don’t understand what non-developers/designers get out of Mix? Who cares about Apollo vs. Silverlight, what really matters are the applications. If some amazing new service or web app launches the framework is the last thing that matters. I didn’t see people avoiding MySpace at first because it was written in ColdFusion and I don’t see people avoiding Twitter now that they know that the Rails framework is starting to groan under the load.

    Anyway, as a developer I’m interested in what Mix has to offer but if I wasn’t it would be a big yawn.

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  6. Personally I’d rather all the passes go to actual developers and designers instead of reporters and “the press”. An actual developer’s perspective is a lot more useful to me than a pundit giving their spin on a technology that they only have a tenious grasp on at best.

    I’ve read so many armchair summaries about Silverlight by people that obviously haven’t even installed the WPF/e CTP that it makes me wish Microsoft wouldn’t even issue press releases to the media about these things. It ends up doing more harm than good because people that know very little about programming end up parroting what some *other* person that knows very little about programming has blogged about the subject.

    If another developer that is more concerned about usability than “what’s cool” at the moment has a positive or negative take on what comes out of Mix’07 that’s a lot more insightful for me as a developer. I’d much rather read a real devs take on a new technology, whether it be Apollo, Rails, Silverlight or whatever.

    I also don’t understand what non-developers/designers get out of Mix? Who cares about Apollo vs. Silverlight, what really matters are the applications. If some amazing new service or web app launches the framework is the last thing that matters. I didn’t see people avoiding MySpace at first because it was written in ColdFusion and I don’t see people avoiding Twitter now that they know that the Rails framework is starting to groan under the load.

    Anyway, as a developer I’m interested in what Mix has to offer but if I wasn’t it would be a big yawn.

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  7. Shawn: good point! But, there are millions of developers out there who won’t be able to get into Microsoft’s little conference. How will some developers hear of Silverlight? Maybe from my videos? Maybe from Wired magazine? I’ve heard of a developer or two reading Wired from time to time. I know, it’s rare, but it does happen. I certainly know a few developers (not to mention CTOs) who watch my videos. But, nah, that’s not an important channel to get information out, is it?

    Funny. Microsoft certainly liked me spreading the word back when I was an evangelist (I did a major percentage of the videos that were reaching 4.3 million unique visitors a month on Channel 9). Nah, developers don’t watch Channel 9, do they?

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  8. Shawn: good point! But, there are millions of developers out there who won’t be able to get into Microsoft’s little conference. How will some developers hear of Silverlight? Maybe from my videos? Maybe from Wired magazine? I’ve heard of a developer or two reading Wired from time to time. I know, it’s rare, but it does happen. I certainly know a few developers (not to mention CTOs) who watch my videos. But, nah, that’s not an important channel to get information out, is it?

    Funny. Microsoft certainly liked me spreading the word back when I was an evangelist (I did a major percentage of the videos that were reaching 4.3 million unique visitors a month on Channel 9). Nah, developers don’t watch Channel 9, do they?

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  9. Oh, and you must have missed that Mike Arrington (a former lawyer) is interviewing Ray Ozzie on stage at Mix.

    Gasp! Microsoft is letting a non-developer in the house. Oh, the horrors!

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  10. Oh, and you must have missed that Mike Arrington (a former lawyer) is interviewing Ray Ozzie on stage at Mix.

    Gasp! Microsoft is letting a non-developer in the house. Oh, the horrors!

    Like

  11. “How will some developers hear of Silverlight? Maybe from my videos? Maybe from Wired magazine?”

    “Wired”? That’s the last place I’d go for accurate technical info. I was a developer for 15 years (since retired), and never paid attention to that rag. Nor did I see any other devs paying attention to it (sure, people sometimes read it for entertainment, but not to get serious info).

    Now, if I were Microsoft (and I’m not), I’d go around the “media”, which I regard a bunch of self-appointed (and self-righteous) guardians of the “truth”. The Mix presentations will be online anyway. Why go through the filter of the tech media, most of which hate MS anyway? Why make devs have to slog through the anti-MS spin and/or idiocy of the media?

    I’d still use video interviews like yours, but the print media, I’d shun *with prejudice*.

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  12. “How will some developers hear of Silverlight? Maybe from my videos? Maybe from Wired magazine?”

    “Wired”? That’s the last place I’d go for accurate technical info. I was a developer for 15 years (since retired), and never paid attention to that rag. Nor did I see any other devs paying attention to it (sure, people sometimes read it for entertainment, but not to get serious info).

    Now, if I were Microsoft (and I’m not), I’d go around the “media”, which I regard a bunch of self-appointed (and self-righteous) guardians of the “truth”. The Mix presentations will be online anyway. Why go through the filter of the tech media, most of which hate MS anyway? Why make devs have to slog through the anti-MS spin and/or idiocy of the media?

    I’d still use video interviews like yours, but the print media, I’d shun *with prejudice*.

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  13. Mike: I never said you’d go there for accurate tech info, but you might hear of a new idea, or a new development platform there. Of course the fact that you hang out on blog comments and probably subscribe to my RSS feed, based on your speed of participating here, tells me that you’re WAY more advanced in your news gathering than most developers are. Most developers probably won’t hear of new Microsoft platforms until Wired, or some other magazine, talks about it.

    And, worse of all, most developers don’t get to choose their technologies that they develop with. That’s often left to the CTO or some other suit and they are even less likely to be online, or know about Mix’s Web site.

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  14. Mike: I never said you’d go there for accurate tech info, but you might hear of a new idea, or a new development platform there. Of course the fact that you hang out on blog comments and probably subscribe to my RSS feed, based on your speed of participating here, tells me that you’re WAY more advanced in your news gathering than most developers are. Most developers probably won’t hear of new Microsoft platforms until Wired, or some other magazine, talks about it.

    And, worse of all, most developers don’t get to choose their technologies that they develop with. That’s often left to the CTO or some other suit and they are even less likely to be online, or know about Mix’s Web site.

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  15. @7 … Continuing …

    But that’s me. Which is why I don’t run PR for anyone. :p

    But I see left wing bloggers calling on Democrats to shun Fox News. I can see where one might begin to shun those segments of the media that will bash one regardless of the merits of any issue. Wired trashes Microsoft 24/7, so I say screw them. But like I said, that’s *me*. πŸ˜‰

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  16. @7 … Continuing …

    But that’s me. Which is why I don’t run PR for anyone. :p

    But I see left wing bloggers calling on Democrats to shun Fox News. I can see where one might begin to shun those segments of the media that will bash one regardless of the merits of any issue. Wired trashes Microsoft 24/7, so I say screw them. But like I said, that’s *me*. πŸ˜‰

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  17. I believe Shawn nails it above. We’re not messing with Fred for sport. Mix is a sold out event, but there will be a few registrants who will cancel in the final hours. (There always is). When that happens do we move Fred to the top of the line ahead of a Developer/Designer Customer?

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  18. I believe Shawn nails it above. We’re not messing with Fred for sport. Mix is a sold out event, but there will be a few registrants who will cancel in the final hours. (There always is). When that happens do we move Fred to the top of the line ahead of a Developer/Designer Customer?

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  19. How many people read Wired magazine again?

    So, do you invite one developer? Great, that might mean one app.

    Or do you invite a journalist who’ll write and talk with, say, 100 developers? (I have a feeling a lot more than 100 developers read Wired magazine).

    Which one is a better decision for Microsoft as a business?

    Which one is better for Microsoft’s ecosystem? How many apps will one decision get done over another?

    I see at least four journalists who got invited to be on Microsoft’s stage. Why did they get invited over someone like Fred?

    Oh, and if you think this is just about Wired magazine, Fred was on CNBC last week. So his reach is more than just Wired.

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  20. How many people read Wired magazine again?

    So, do you invite one developer? Great, that might mean one app.

    Or do you invite a journalist who’ll write and talk with, say, 100 developers? (I have a feeling a lot more than 100 developers read Wired magazine).

    Which one is a better decision for Microsoft as a business?

    Which one is better for Microsoft’s ecosystem? How many apps will one decision get done over another?

    I see at least four journalists who got invited to be on Microsoft’s stage. Why did they get invited over someone like Fred?

    Oh, and if you think this is just about Wired magazine, Fred was on CNBC last week. So his reach is more than just Wired.

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  21. Oh, and Jeff, you and I both know that journalists who don’t treat Microsoft well in their articles don’t get the goodies when it comes time to hand them out.

    I know several journalists who got offered tickets to Mix. So don’t play the “we’re gonna put a cold, poor, hungry developer out in the cold” game. It might be that you already have one extra press ticket and you’re trying to decide who is better to let into the event: Fred or me.

    Go with Fred. He has more reach.

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  22. Oh, and Jeff, you and I both know that journalists who don’t treat Microsoft well in their articles don’t get the goodies when it comes time to hand them out.

    I know several journalists who got offered tickets to Mix. So don’t play the “we’re gonna put a cold, poor, hungry developer out in the cold” game. It might be that you already have one extra press ticket and you’re trying to decide who is better to let into the event: Fred or me.

    Go with Fred. He has more reach.

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  23. Robert,

    As I mentioned over on Channel 9, Fred was invited to Mix by me and reminded to register.

    We sold out and now have a waiting list.

    As cancellations come in (we’ll get a few) folks will move up the list.

    Is it fair for Fred to be bumped up due to his reach?

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  24. Robert,

    As I mentioned over on Channel 9, Fred was invited to Mix by me and reminded to register.

    We sold out and now have a waiting list.

    As cancellations come in (we’ll get a few) folks will move up the list.

    Is it fair for Fred to be bumped up due to his reach?

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  25. Jeff: a smart PR team would have held a certain number of tickets for big name PR folks who ask to be let in at the last second. That’s happened many times in the past.

    Remember, I helped plan the VSLive conferences. I remember one time when Bill Gates was speaking. We had hundreds of press requests. We were sold out. Microsoft encouraged us to make room for them. We did. If I remember right we kicked the Microsoft employees and our staff out of the room to make room for the press.

    So, why the change in policy with this show? It looks a little like you’re making an example of Fred.

    Me, I think the real news will be out in the lobby anyway which is why I am gonna be out there.

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  26. Jeff: a smart PR team would have held a certain number of tickets for big name PR folks who ask to be let in at the last second. That’s happened many times in the past.

    Remember, I helped plan the VSLive conferences. I remember one time when Bill Gates was speaking. We had hundreds of press requests. We were sold out. Microsoft encouraged us to make room for them. We did. If I remember right we kicked the Microsoft employees and our staff out of the room to make room for the press.

    So, why the change in policy with this show? It looks a little like you’re making an example of Fred.

    Me, I think the real news will be out in the lobby anyway which is why I am gonna be out there.

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  27. Any serious dev who doesn’t read publications like Wired, simply isn’t *really* in the game. Or maybe they have a cush job somewhere where accountability is not over-valued and they can just coast along producing mediocre and irrelevant and/or outdated borderline useless apps.

    The best and the brightest keep their ears to the ground and both eyes open…they’re hungry for any whisper of what might be happening and are the true innovators as a result.

    Insulating oneself in a bubble of likemindedness is no way to innovate.

    On another matter, ignorning, marginalizing, belittling the media, while tempting and certainly fun, is absolutely foolish. Use them. Beat ’em at their game. They’ll always be a place for “inside baseball” and “NE Journal of Medicine” but I assure you that major leaguers read SI and the brightest medical researchers are just as interested in (and recognize the immeasurable value of) what USA Today’s take is on their research. It’s called having your finger on the pulse of the mainstream–who in the end determine your success or failure (not some techie, no matter how much you wish it to be.)

    Allan

    fwiw – since Fox News has twice the audience of all other media outlets combined, and the latest research shows that 67% of their audience considers themselves “independent”, Democrats are foolish to not utilize that reach. Preaching to the choir is not how you get converts…

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  28. Any serious dev who doesn’t read publications like Wired, simply isn’t *really* in the game. Or maybe they have a cush job somewhere where accountability is not over-valued and they can just coast along producing mediocre and irrelevant and/or outdated borderline useless apps.

    The best and the brightest keep their ears to the ground and both eyes open…they’re hungry for any whisper of what might be happening and are the true innovators as a result.

    Insulating oneself in a bubble of likemindedness is no way to innovate.

    On another matter, ignorning, marginalizing, belittling the media, while tempting and certainly fun, is absolutely foolish. Use them. Beat ’em at their game. They’ll always be a place for “inside baseball” and “NE Journal of Medicine” but I assure you that major leaguers read SI and the brightest medical researchers are just as interested in (and recognize the immeasurable value of) what USA Today’s take is on their research. It’s called having your finger on the pulse of the mainstream–who in the end determine your success or failure (not some techie, no matter how much you wish it to be.)

    Allan

    fwiw – since Fox News has twice the audience of all other media outlets combined, and the latest research shows that 67% of their audience considers themselves “independent”, Democrats are foolish to not utilize that reach. Preaching to the choir is not how you get converts…

    Like

  29. Wired is utter trash.
    Let’s get real, it’s not like we’re talking about the old BYTE magazine after all. Wired is a “hipper” version of the “enquirer” or “register” tabloid tech sites, nothing more.

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  30. Wired is utter trash.
    Let’s get real, it’s not like we’re talking about the old BYTE magazine after all. Wired is a “hipper” version of the “enquirer” or “register” tabloid tech sites, nothing more.

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  31. As a developer that couldn’t get into Mix07 either, I voted to let Fred in. Why? Because of the size of his audience. It’s that simple.

    As for developers like me, Microsoft doesn’t have to be too concerned. We’ll devour every bit of information we can get about Mix07 anyway. That’s why I’m going to hang out in the hallways at Mix–even without a pass. I’ll find a way.

    As for Jeff’s voting idea: This is the first bit of creativity that I’ve seen from Microsoft about the oversold condition. Up to this point, responses have all been bureaucratic. It’s good to see someone trying something creative to get around the problem. It all makes me wonder though: Where are the Microsoft employees volunteering to give up their passes so Fred can get in? What about an overflow room for the keynote and the expected “hot” sessions the first day? There’s always a way–if you’re motivated enough.

    One last point: for us in the community to really make a good decision, what about posting the wait list and having “the audience” vote on who gets in? Let the community pick which people they will pay most attention to.

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  32. As a developer that couldn’t get into Mix07 either, I voted to let Fred in. Why? Because of the size of his audience. It’s that simple.

    As for developers like me, Microsoft doesn’t have to be too concerned. We’ll devour every bit of information we can get about Mix07 anyway. That’s why I’m going to hang out in the hallways at Mix–even without a pass. I’ll find a way.

    As for Jeff’s voting idea: This is the first bit of creativity that I’ve seen from Microsoft about the oversold condition. Up to this point, responses have all been bureaucratic. It’s good to see someone trying something creative to get around the problem. It all makes me wonder though: Where are the Microsoft employees volunteering to give up their passes so Fred can get in? What about an overflow room for the keynote and the expected “hot” sessions the first day? There’s always a way–if you’re motivated enough.

    One last point: for us in the community to really make a good decision, what about posting the wait list and having “the audience” vote on who gets in? Let the community pick which people they will pay most attention to.

    Like

  33. The Editors of Wired will determine the angle of the story that will appear in their publication.

    I think they want to tar Ray with the antitrust brush and glorify Google.

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  34. The Editors of Wired will determine the angle of the story that will appear in their publication.

    I think they want to tar Ray with the antitrust brush and glorify Google.

    Like

  35. If it’s oversold, and still high demand, it wasn’t forecast right…if people want to hear your message, you mean to tell me, Microsoft can’t find extra room? But as with all these conferences, it’s all about the freebie jockeying.

    But the back-channel ‘who should stay in the lifeboat’, ‘vote the unpopular kids off the island’, ‘developers are worth more than journalists’, have no place in anything Marketing.

    Why Fred of ALL journalists? I am sure lots of others failed to register, and tons more that should be there, prop. never bothered. Looks singled out to me.

    Pointless in the grand scheme of things, but hey, what’s a blog without a meaningless eternal war of words.

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  36. If it’s oversold, and still high demand, it wasn’t forecast right…if people want to hear your message, you mean to tell me, Microsoft can’t find extra room? But as with all these conferences, it’s all about the freebie jockeying.

    But the back-channel ‘who should stay in the lifeboat’, ‘vote the unpopular kids off the island’, ‘developers are worth more than journalists’, have no place in anything Marketing.

    Why Fred of ALL journalists? I am sure lots of others failed to register, and tons more that should be there, prop. never bothered. Looks singled out to me.

    Pointless in the grand scheme of things, but hey, what’s a blog without a meaningless eternal war of words.

    Like

  37. “Where are the Microsoft employees volunteering to give up their passes so Fred can get in?”

    Why should they? The guy didn’t think it was so important that he bothered to register on time.

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  38. “Where are the Microsoft employees volunteering to give up their passes so Fred can get in?”

    Why should they? The guy didn’t think it was so important that he bothered to register on time.

    Like

  39. >Why should they?

    They have in the past. When I helped plan a VSLive conference Bill Gates came to speak and we were sold out. Microsoft pressured us to make room for more journalists. They are important to get the story out. We did by making Microsoft employees and other staff members hang out in the hallway until Bill was gone.

    Personally these events are just as much about communicating news with journalists (which is why several were invited to be on stage, basically to assure they’d be there) as it is to communicate with developers who are paying to be there.

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  40. >Why should they?

    They have in the past. When I helped plan a VSLive conference Bill Gates came to speak and we were sold out. Microsoft pressured us to make room for more journalists. They are important to get the story out. We did by making Microsoft employees and other staff members hang out in the hallway until Bill was gone.

    Personally these events are just as much about communicating news with journalists (which is why several were invited to be on stage, basically to assure they’d be there) as it is to communicate with developers who are paying to be there.

    Like

  41. I attended Mix 06 last year and it sucked, so not going this year. Not sure why MSFT is making such a big f….ng deal about not having room for the press, specially Scoble. I would recommend you don’t even attend, or if you do, be sure to capture all the negative energy and unsatisfied attendees like myself in the hallways.

    – EM

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  42. I attended Mix 06 last year and it sucked, so not going this year. Not sure why MSFT is making such a big f….ng deal about not having room for the press, specially Scoble. I would recommend you don’t even attend, or if you do, be sure to capture all the negative energy and unsatisfied attendees like myself in the hallways.

    – EM

    Like

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