NECC – No Internet in Blogger’s Cafe, NECC Unplugged – WRONG ANSWER

The Internet’s down here at NECC 2009. “Too many people – it overloaded the system” has been the response.

WRONG ANSWER. The convention center knew 14,000 techies were coming. If it couldn’t handle the bandwidth need, it shouldn’t have accepted the contract. Unacceptable response by the convention center.

I asked some ISTE people (staff? volunteers?) here in the hallway when the Internet will be back up and available. They said a reboot was occurring and hopefully everything would be fine in another 15 minutes. I said, “Okay. Well, sorry. I’m sure you’re taking some heat for this.” They shrugged their shoulders indifferently and said, “Oh, it’s no problem. We’re not worried about it.”

WRONG ANSWER. Indifferent to the Internet needs of the 14,000 techies who paid a boatload of money to attend the conference and who have expectations about access to the Web? Unacceptable response by ISTE.

Remember – your organization is only as good as the people who interact with your clients or the public…

UPDATE: I am pleased to announce that the Internet is back up again. Thanks, ISTE. Everyone, cross your fingers that it lasts!

8 Responses to “NECC – No Internet in Blogger’s Cafe, NECC Unplugged – WRONG ANSWER”

  1. Scott,

    Totally agree with the sentiments expressed and the words you’ve chosen.

    What’s the old military expression … if you need a unit, send in a division … if you need a division, send in a brigade … or something like that … point being … overplan … oh, I’m sending this comment using my broadband wireless card!

    I know the wireless isn’t cheap but it’s simply not something we can do without. Who said it first … technology is like oxygen … well, we’re dyin’ over here!


  2. I agree 100%. I am at home in Fredericksburg, VA trying to access #neccunplugged with nothing. Very frustrating. This was also an advertised part of the conference experience.

  3. This experience tells you more about teachers trying to incorporate technology in their classrooms and the frustrations when the system crashes and lesson plans go out the window; kids are in the middle of a great project and technical problems aren’t addressed by the one tech guy who serves our entire district; filters that block the blogs and internet resources teachers want to use…I could go on and on, but I still keep trying in my classroom, no matter what. Often the powers that be give lip service to 21st century skills but they don’t get what they need to do to help the teachers and students have the tools they need.

  4. I agree with Rho that this experience mimics all to closely the reality of teacher & student frustration with lack of access or filtered access.

    I’d like to see some sort of standard “guarantee” posted on conference sites stating that connectedness is a top priority and a team will be in place on site to swiftly & efficiently deal with Internet issues.

  5. otoh, wifi wasn’t designed to do giant conferences, so making it actually work is genuinely difficult.

  6. I agree Scott! It was especially frustrating when you are attending a BYOL Lesson and not only can you not get to the online resources but neither can the presenters. This is a technology conference for goodness sakes.

  7. Technology should be invisible, seamless, & ubiquitous. Sorry it wasn’t.

  8. Amen, amen, amen. I’m a different Diane than the other reply post but share her sentiments. I blogged my own comments about the frustrations of classroom technology. I didn’t hae any problems getting online, but wasn’t at blogger’s cafe either (tho wish I had been.)

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