I have a lot of sympathy for those who can't afford conference hotel
prices, I do. As the father of twins who had to be professionally
engaged with $500/year to work with, I can tell you that I hear you.
But please don't expect the conference itself to select the venue and
complete conference package based on the sole requirement to keep room
rates down.

There were many ALA conferences when I did not stay in any conference
hotel. And when you look at the hotel prices for the conference I'm at
right now (ALA Annual in Chicago[1]) you might well have a heart
attack, as they are almost all higher -- and often WAY higher -- than
the Code4Lib 2014 price. This doesn't necessarily make it right, but
it might put it into perspective, as this conference is attended by
quite a few librarians who cannot afford these prices either.

I guess what I'm suggesting is that the conference organizers have to
make the best deal they can, and allow individual attendees to figure
out what their best option might be. And even in so doing, they run
the risk of not making the numbers of conference hotel bookings and
then be on the hook for the consequences.

In other words, let's give the conference organizers (your
professional colleagues and mine) the benefit of a doubt. They
(seriously) want to put on the best and least expensive conference
they can. And we can all help them do that by doing things like
gathering sponsorships to keep other expenses down. Your (or anyone
else's) participation in this would be more than welcome. Thanks,


On Sun, Jun 30, 2013 at 6:48 PM, Tim McGeary <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> All three of Cary's reasons are absolutely correct, but #3 is the most accurate.  There are a number of negotiated benefits for having conference attendees stay at the venue hotel. Just off the top of my head there are two examples where we are talking at least $75 per person.
> We careful choose the location of the hotel. It is within walking distance of many of the places attendees will want to  go to in the evenings. Other hotels in the city may be less expensive, but are not necessarily within walking distance and do not have the capacity to fit us all.  Keep in mind, Code4Lib 2013 had over 380 attendees, and we are expecting to host a similar number.
> Please know that one of our main goals is to keep the total cost as low as possible while hosting the highest quality conference.
> Don't hesitate to ask more questions.
> Cheers,
> Tim
> Sent from my iPhone
> Tim McGeary
> Director of Library & Informational Technology
> University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
> On Jun 29, 2013, at 9:08 AM, Cary Gordon <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>> There are three reasons to stay at the conference hotel, even though it
>> might not be the cheapest option:
>> 1) You can roll out of bed and into the session;
>> 2) More opportunities for out of band discussions; and
>> 3) There is very likely a hotel commit involved, meaning that the
>> organizers have committed to a certain number of rooms per night in order
>> to get free or discounted meeting rooms, hospitality rooms and other
>> services. Performance on room commits can be used as a bargaining chip for
>> future Code4LibCons.
>> Everyone knows that budget is always a big consideration, and not everyone
>> can or will stay at the conference hotel.
>> Cary
>> On Sat, Jun 29, 2013 at 6:16 AM, BWS Johnson <[log in to unmask]>wrote:
>>> Salvete!
>>>> I am happy to announce that we have secured the venue and dates for
>>>> Code4Lib 2014!  The conference will be held at the Sheraton Raleigh Hotel
>>>> in downtown Raleigh, NC on March 24 - 27, 2014.  Preconferences will be
>>>> held Monday March 24, and the main conference on Tuesday March 25 - 27.
>>>     Hooray, that's sort of close. Maybe I'll be able to pit fight my own
>>> place next year.
>>>> Finally, the hotel has the capacity to host all of the attendees, and
>>> we've
>>>> negotiated a rate of $159/night that includes wireless access in the
>>> hotel
>>>> rooms.  Hotel reservations will be able to made after you register using
>>>> the information provided in your registration confirmation.  We will be
>>>> publishing more details as become available.
>>>     Ruh oh. This was rather shocking. Perhaps you might wish to show them
>>> a search, which puts your $159 just over the Hilton and about
>>> double other places in the vicinity. I'm sure it's nice and all that, but
>>> uh, perhaps they would be willing to come down seeing as how we're sending
>>> a boatload of traffic their way.
>>> Cheers,
>>> Brooke
>> --
>> Cary Gordon
>> The Cherry Hill Company