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ARSCLIST  February 2013

ARSCLIST February 2013

Subject:

Re: ARSC Conference Program scheduling- Your vote counts

From:

Peter Hirsch <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Association for Recorded Sound Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Sun, 24 Feb 2013 14:49:07 -0500

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (167 lines)

Having attended, I believe, four ARSC conferences and presented at
one, I have just a few marginal comments to make.

I think that, unless there is only one presentation going on at a
time, there will be people who will be frustrated by having to miss
ones that are of interest because they are in your area(s) of
specialty or because they are not and you are missing the opportunity
to widen your horizons. This has been stated already and I do not know
if it is reasonable to cut back drastically on the number of
presentations. Still, it doesn't hurt to state the obvious fact that
you can't be two places at one time. I am making my possibly redundant
point because I am one of those who come to the conferences because I
am interested in all aspects of activity that ARSC encompasses. I
enjoy presentations that are in areas that I am at least moderately
experienced and qualified, like collecting, history of musical
figures, trends in the recording industry and cataloging. Also, I
equally make a point of attending the more technical presentations,
specifically because my knowledge there is pretty sketchy and I just
might learn from those much more expert than myself. I understand the
pull that Tom F. and Steve S. have described between attending
programs situated in your "power alley" to justify attending for
professional reasons and sitting in on what sounds cool or might have
charismatic presenters or guests, but is not related to what you do
for a living. I do receive some financial support from my employer for
attending ARSC conferences on some occasions, though not always and
the amount nowadays does not cover even close to half of my expenses.
This means that I don't feel a major compulsion to only go to
presentations approved by them. I would be happiest with fewer events
so that nothing is happening concurrently with something else, but
that is only my personal take on things. I can see that a conference
program that presents a larger menu is more likely to have something
for everyone, though it does also open the door for those just taking
a stab at presenting who have little to add to the common knowledge of
ARSC.

My experience presenting in Seattle (I believe I had half an hour) was
pretty educational for me and hope at least a little for the audience.
I echo the pleas that you prepare and run through your presentation as
many times as you have to (who could disagree?). I was shocked to see
that, what looked like a few hundred words on the page could take me
so long to enunciate out loud. I cut and slashed and worked on
developing a decent rhythm to the way I spoke. As it turned out, I
read mostly, but also was able to inject comments as they came to mind
or in response to audiences comments. I don't think I had to do any
truncation on the fly, but I would have really appreciated 15 or 20
more minutes, mostly so that there could have been a better Q & A at
the end.

Regarding the use of visuals. All I can say is that when I announced
that there was no multi-media component, just monomedia me talking,
the audience cheered. I have the recording of my presentation that
documents how little the audience wanted to sit through another
PowerPoint lecture. I have seen some good slide shows and obviously we
in ARSC like to listen to things, but I have never liked it when I
felt that the visual was either there to remind the speaker where he
was. I don't mind looking at them afterwards if they are printed out,
but I could do without them while I am trying to listen. As mentioned
a few times, some presenters put the entire content of their talk,
sometimes verbatim. This ought to be specifically forbidden by the
program committee if they are at all interested in assuring a decent
level of quality.

I have trimmed out some of the previous comments in this thread simply
to condense things. It is not that I wish to ignore them, since they
all made pretty good points.

Looking forward to seeing you in KC,

Peter Hirsch

On Sun, Feb 24, 2013 at 11:57 AM, Tom Fine <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> In that case, I do have it backwards. So then make sure a technical program
> group runs parallel to a history/music group as much as possible.
>
> Mike's got a good point also as far as general interest is concerned. Try
> and set it up so the panel on minute opera obscura isn't running opposite
> the panel on minute database obscura unless the expectation is that 90% of
> attendees will be elsewhere.
>
> I don't mean to short-shrift the cataloging/database field. It's very
> important as far as the macro topic of preservation and successful access by
> the public is concerned. But it's a very specialized area, with true experts
> involved. It therefore is inherently not of general interest, espcially to
> the contingent of hobbyist/collectors. The same can be said for the dark
> corners of music and discography obscura. All of it definitely as a place in
> ARSC, of all organizations. But at the conferences, care should be taken to
> have running parallel something of more general interest.
>
> It's helpful to post the audio and some slides after the conferneces. I wish
> this were done in a more timely manner. I'm able to get my companies
> conferences put to a CD-ROM with complete MP3 audio (carved from unedited
> WAV files) and PDF of slides, in a couple of work days (16-20 man hours,
> working at a relaxed pace). ARSC has three days, rather than one day, and
> parallel session, so reasonably speaking it's more like 40+ man-hours. But
> sometimes it takes nearly a half year for audio to show up online. And why
> so few slides? Providing slides online should be a requirement of being
> provided a presentation forum at ARSC. I'm OK with making conference content
> members-only access. Let more people pony up the meager membership cost, in
> fact if more people would join, the membership cost could be held steady for
> a long time or go down.
>
> -- Tom Fine
>
> PS -- I'd also like to see PDF of ALL ISSUES of the ARSC Journal provided
> online for members. Perhaps people who must have the printed version should
> pay a little extra? That's how AES works, and they have greatly reduced
> their printing costs.
>
> ----- Original Message ----- From: "Michael Biel" <[log in to unmask]>
> To: <[log in to unmask]>
> Sent: Sunday, February 24, 2013 11:07 AM
> Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] ARSC Conference Program scheduling- Your vote counts
>
>
> Tom -- I think you got it backwards.  We do not want similar sessions
> opposite each other, we need different sessions opposite.  Having two
> discographical/collecting sessions opposite each other is what the
> problem is.  Many in the group don't care about the technical and
> archivist cataloging sessions, and some ONLY care about these and don't
> care about the musical content or ancient performers.
>
> Mike Biel  [log in to unmask]
>
> -------- Original Message --------
>
> From: Tom Fine <[log in to unmask]>
>
>
> One solution might be to make Thursday all music/discography day and
> Saturday all
> technology/archiving day, with Friday being some sort of mix with a
> longer morning session for ARSC
> business. This could then help people like Steve and myself avoid being
> torn between something of
> curiosity to us (ie something historical or musical) vs a technical
> session that we know we should
> attend to justify the cost of travel (ie it will help our business,
> which funds the travel).
>
> -- Tom Fine
>
> ----- Original Message ----- From: "Steve Smolian" <[log in to unmask]>
> To: <[log in to unmask]>
> Sent: Sunday, February 24, 2013 9:10 AM
> Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] ARSC Conference Program scheduling- Your vote
> counts
>
>
>> Some academics get travel funds only if they participate in a program.
>>
>> I agree with Mike both in the too shortness of many presentations and in
>> the concurrent sessions
>> issue. When there is a conflict, I almost always go to the technical
>> sessions and deeply resent
>> not being able to attend those relating to recording history. Grrrr!
>>
>> As an occasional presenter with a 35 minute limit, I cram as much as I can
>> into that time, and to
>> heck with questions. So do others. Lots of bad info floats around
>> unchallenged.
>>
>> On the other hand, I generally dislike the zombie panels where old stars
>> reminisce. I spend the $
>> 1,000 it costs to travel and register for information, not entertainment.
>>
>> Steve Smolian

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