[sent to nanog-futures@, bcc'ing nanog-announce@, apologies for duplicates]
During the past several community meetings, Merit have presented accounts for NANOG which show that revenue from membership fees and sponsorship are not sufficient to cover costs, despite substantial measures taken by Merit over the past several meetings to reduce the overhead involved in NANOG activities.
Recent efforts to plan ahead and arrange meeting venues up to 18 months in the future have provided additional financial pressure, since hotels require substantial deposits. Extending the length of the meeting from Sunday-Tuesday to Sunday-Wednesday has also contributed to increased costs, as have the improvements in network infrastructure which have been evident at recent meetings. Revenue has not increased to offset these additional costs.
Merit and the SC are together working on changes to the sponsorship structure at NANOG meetings in order to increase the value to sponsors from participating with the goal of increasing meeting revenue. Changes will take some time to implement, however, and are by their nature somewhat speculative since the benefits of the changes will not be really apparent until they have been implemented.
At past community meetings, people have clearly expressed that modest increases in meeting fees would not present significant barriers to meeting attendance, so long as the other costs of attending (hotel block rates, travel, etc) were maintained at current levels. NANOG meeting fees are low when compared to other, similar events. The current meeting fee of $350 has been in place since NANOG 28 in June 2003.
Both Merit and the SC are committed to finding a sustainable funding model which will ensure that NANOG continues to be a viable community resource for many years to come, and is predictably and reliably self-sustaining for the benefit of all participants.
In their meeting on Wednesday 2006-11-22 the Steering Committee approved an increase of NANOG meeting attendance fees from $350 to $450. This will be implemented for NANOG 39 in Toronto.
Further discussion of funding models and related topics is encouraged, and should take place on the nanog-futures mailing list. Please see <http://www.nanog.org/email.html> for subscription instructions.
for the SC