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Voting is now closed for this years VMworld submissions

Ok so Voting is now closed,  hopefully the sessions that you voted for will  be accepted and we will be all happy, but some how I do not think that will be the case, once again the party will be overburdened with Vendors plying thinly disguised sales pitches and VCE staff toeing the company line.

To be truthful I was disappointed with the sessions this year,  not the content or subjects, but the presenters.

if you removed EMC or VMware there would have been hardly any submissions that made it through to the voting stage. Now whether that was an indication of lack of external content submission, or more an indication of a Machiavellian plot to reject not VCE content before voting I cannot say.  

Another thing that annoyed me this year has been the blatant hi-jacking of popular independent content and repackaging it with VCE Staff.

Point in case, the Storage Super-Heavyweight Challenge, run by Cody Bunch, with a number of senior Storage bods you may have heard of,  Chad Sacac, Vaughn Stewart etc.  it extremely similar to and Q and A session run by Rick Sherver (EMC) containing wait for it, yep, Chad and Vaughn,

Another one:- The Annual Ask the Experts, staffed by senior Bloggers, has also been hijacked.

One of the things I loved about VMworld was that it was Pseudo Independent.   The little guy had a chance to have his say and do his session. 

I wait with baited breath to see how many of those session are not staffed by VCE personal.

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12 comments

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    • Duncan on May 20, 2011 at 7:01 pm

    Anyone is free to submit whatever he or she feels to submit. The attendees, during this part of the voting, decide what is popular and what is not. The fact that EMC/VCE submitted many sessions has absolutely nothing to do with the lack of “external content” submitted. I was part of the internal voting committee and as far as I have been able to tell all sessions that were part of my track were published for public voting (Technology and Architecture), except for NDA sessions of course.

    About the Ask The Experts session staffed by Senior Bloggers, I believe the line-up is similar to 2009 except that they replaced you with Frank Denneman. I can understand you are disappointed that you were not asked to be part of the panel, but that’s no reason to claim it is hijacked. A single person was mere replaced by a higher ranked blogger, more than like to increase the chances of getting through.

    I am sorry you are disappointed. I strongly believe that quality sessions will be accepted regardless of the speaker.

    1. I am sorry you feel that this was a personal attack, it was not. it was more of a mussing type post.

      As per not being asked to be on the Ask the Experts panel. Whether I was asked or not is irrelevant, what is noticeable is that all the member of the panel, including the moderator are VMware and EMC. it is that I was mentioning, the is no real independant on the panel. the best thing about the “Ask the Experts” used to be the “independant” nature of the panel, sadly that appears to have gone.

        • Duncan on May 20, 2011 at 9:06 pm

        As just tweeted, ALL sessions were up for public voting except those containing futures! There is no conspiracy theory or plot whatsoever.

        1. Glad to here that, maybe the imbalance is just due to all the sweeping up of talent that the vendors have been doing over the last two years

            • xYike on May 22, 2011 at 4:31 am

            “maybe the imbalance” ?? This is silly and costing you credibility – ONE person on the panel changes and you want to start claiming a hijack? Stand back and take a objective look.

          1. One person changes, personally I have no problem on not being on the panel I was not on those prior to 2008 and was not on the 2010 panel, I was not even at VMworld 2010, and I am not even sure of Attendance in 2011. The point of the comment is that all the panelist are either VMware or EMC personnel, there is no independence. THAT IS THE POINT. This session originated originally circa 2007 VMworld or maybe earlier and awhen I first sat on it in 2008 it was staffed by the Moderators of the VMTN community, and only modertators and senior members of that community, currently only Duncan is a moderator of the community, but he is also a VMware Staffer. it is now just another mouth peice for the VCE. Now I want to state this AGAIN. There is no doubt of the quality of the panellists and this is in “NO WAY A PERSONAL ATTACK ON ANY PERSON”. they are some of the best that VMware’s PSO and EMC’s vSpecialist team offer. and the session will be one of the more useful as it will be fluid and varied in content.

            From my time on the panel, I can say we were pressed and probed on our knowledge of virtualization. If the panel has kept to the open question format it will be hard on the panelists.

            But the thing I commented on was the imballance of VCE content over none VCE content. I pointed out two sessions were there were hijacks. Codys Storage Smackdown and the experts panel and it suddenly becomes I am Jellous and viciously attacking people because I am not on the PANEL. THOSE THAT REALLY KNOW ME, and not just thougth the content of my Blog and online presence know this is not the case.

  1. I wonder if people don’t understand the opportunity of presenting at VMworld. In the tech track, networking category, other than Jason Nash and me, almost every session was authored by a vendor. While vendors can do great presentations (I spent most of my career working for vendors and always tried to cover technology without too much bias), there could be a lot more independents (VARs, SIs, customers, bloggers) that could add a lot back to the community. It’s a lot of work to do the presentations, but you get back a lot of positive from the VMware ecosystem in return.
    Cheers,
    Stu

    1. I think there’s be a lot of…consolidation…in the industry over the last 12 months as well. Lots of people (like me) who used to be “independent” are now working with a vendor. Hopefully when it comes to things like VMworld sessions, we can remember who the audience is and stay true to where we came from.

  2. I’m sorry you feel that way Tom. As an employee of VCE who wasn’t asked or expected to submit a session for VMworld, I did so because I thought I had something that would be valuable to share with the audience of VMware technical customers. My session isn’t about VCE or Vblocks, it’s about vCloud Director and how Gold, Silver and Bronze tiering strategies aren’t very helpful in the real world, SP or Enterprise.

    Before I worked for VCE, I was a Service Provider customer. I, too, have been active with in my local VMware community although I don’t consider myself a “Senior Blogger” or an “expert” of any kind. I’m a guy with some technical know-how and a lot of experience with virtualization from the Service Provider standpoint. Don’t paint my efforts to interact with the larger VMware community because of who I work for. I don’t think that’s fair to me, to VMware or to the community at large.

    Maybe my session gets accepted; I’d be honored and excited. Maybe it doesn’t. I’m not that well known, so when it comes to public voting I’m at a disadvantage. I tried to come up with a catchy title to attract some eyeballs, but I’m confident that whatever happens it won’t have anything to do with where I work. I submitted the session in my own name, based on my own content and experiences, and that’s all that should be judged.

  3. Have it the way you want guys, but the fact that the majority of sessions are going to be presented by V,C,E guys is, well, a fact.
    I think that no one (including Tom) has doubts about the quality of the sessions and the speakers, but this ‘lack of diversity’ is something that inevitably changes the perception we all had (mine, at least) about what VMWorld used to be. I’m more than sure that all the speakers will do their best to keep the bias apart, but again.. We’re all grownups, and know that it’s part of the game: bias comes as part of working for someone directly involved in this market segment. Hearing very different bells is (or was) a big value, imho.

  4. Hi Tom,

    I get your point, and I understand you look at it this way. But I can’t agree totally on your view.

    First let me say I’ve never been to VMworld and I hope to go for the first time this year. I can’t really judge the other VMworld (except all content found on the internet, which is huge ;)) but I think the content for this year is outstanding.

    Of course, lot’s of the speakers are employed by the “big” vendors. But I think that’s a good thing. It means that the product that you like so much is doing a very good job. And to make their product even better they know they need the people who helped make the product big. I think it’s a great thing that guys like Duncan, Frank, Chad, Scott and many others are really making the product “even” better.

    I must agree with you that there are a whole lot of “vendor” driven content. And while on one hand that might be a good thing, It might be a good idea to give the “independent” a certain share. But then again you might miss out on good content like that of Jeramiah.

    I think we all agree it’s the best product in the market, and it will continue to be. This is, and must be done, by making sure you employ the best of the best. And those are also the guys I like to hear on VMworld. But I also like to hear independent contributers, as they have a rather different (read impartial) view on the products.

    Everyone had the oppurtunity to get his/her session up for the voting round. Hope there is a good mix of vendor and independent sessions. I really like Stuart’s view.

    Arjan

    • Simon Bodecott on May 23, 2011 at 5:23 pm

    This post raises some interesting questions about the VMware community and where it is heading.

    During my formative years as a clean-cut, naive Microsoft engineer I never felt any connection with the organisation, or with my fellow engineers – sure, we got the occasional presentation at IT expos and email newsflash, but that was it. Microsoft just produced software that we deployed and maintained. How I envied my penguin loving co-workers with their script swapping and beardy sense of belonging!

    Having fallen into VMware by chance I was delighted to find the best of both Worlds – the enterprise readiness and professionalism of Microsoft, along with a Linux-like community spirit created by a group of individuals that chose to put their time and energy into something they were passionate about.

    I’ve attended a few of the VMUGs, both North and South, immersing myself in the tradition of vBeers, and have had conversations with some of the most respected people in the industry. There is no class system or “lording it” when VMware people get together, just laughs and an open forum for exchanging experiences, ideas and views.

    It is only natural for VMware — and related hardware vendors — to fish in this talent pool, so that over time the balance between independent and in-house talent will tip in VMware’s favour.
    It is also to be expected that this talent, once on the company payroll, be loyal and positive about their employer, even when commenting personally.

    The danger as this balance changes is for VMware to stop listening to the voices outside the walls and start to believe that only their own views are valid. Those on the outside will then quickly lose their enthusiasm and the community will wither and die.

    Some of the responses on this thread have come over to me as rather defensive, as though any perceived criticism must be shown to be heresy and shot down in flames.

    Tom makes a valid point about how much “outsiders” are able to contribute to events such as VMWorld COMPARED TO PREVIOUS YEARS. I’ve never been lucky enough to attend a VMWorld event so I cannot comment on how valid the changes are. I do know that many of the people I follow on Twitter, and whose blogs I regularly read, are independent voices that speak freely on what they find, positive or negative. Long may that continue!

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