Poll

SHould Hidden Earth Stomp be a Disco or a Rock Band...

Disco
24 (51.1%)
Rock Band
23 (48.9%)

Total Members Voted: 47

Author Topic: Hidden Earth Stomp!  (Read 10892 times)

Offline kay

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #25 on: October 06, 2013, 06:53:35 pm »
The price of Hidden Earth covers a lot of things that an individual may not participate in -  eg ....the lectures

Correct me if I'm wrong but the lecturers don't get paid.

The ticket price for Hidden Earth covers the cost of the venue, not the presentations.


The lecturers don't get paid, although they do get a discount, but if Hidden Earth weren't running 3 lecture streams in parallel, it wouldn't need such a large venue and it wouldn't need to purchase 3 sets of AV equipment. And everyone is sharing in the cost of this, even if they only attend one or two lectures over the whole weekend.

Offline Cap'n Chris

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #26 on: October 06, 2013, 07:51:30 pm »
People attending (and paying for) Hidden Earth might indeed not attend a single lecture; whether or not they do is neither here nor there - their ticket price pays for the event. What they make of it is up to them. Hiring in a band is most definitely an additional cost. If a significant proportion of attendees specifically wish to attend a live gig then it would seem reasonable for them to pay an additional sum, over and beyond the cost of their standard ticket in order to offset the cost of hiring in a band, surely?


Offline kay

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #27 on: October 06, 2013, 09:07:08 pm »
Hiring in a band is most definitely an additional cost.

 I'm not sure I agree. Is Hidden Earth simply a set of lectures? Or is the stomp and all the other ancillary activities part of the event? In which case hiring a live band isn't an additional cost, it's part of the cost of staging the event. All purely personal opinion of course.

Offline Cap'n Chris

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #28 on: October 07, 2013, 08:17:59 am »
If additional (ancillary) elements are, as you claim. not a burdensome extra cost (i.e. drain on the net donation going forward to Ghar Parau) then why not augment Hidden Earth with a firework show, goodie bags with slices of cake to take home, car stickers and whatever else is viewed as a standard part of the event?

"I'm not sure I agree".

I am sure I agree.

The acid test is this:

Do you want a Hidden Earth T-shirt? Yes? You'll need to pay for it.
Do you want to attend the Conference evening meal? Yes? You'll need to pay for it.
Do you want to use the camping facilties? Yes? You'll need to pay for it.
Do you want to attend the Stomp?

Offline Bottlebank

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #29 on: October 07, 2013, 09:46:05 am »
I'm with Kay, I view Hidden Earth as a social event, as do many others. I may attend a couple of lectures but I see lectures as an ancilliary element.

If you don't believe this drop admission prices by a tenner and charge a pound for each lecture and see what that does to attendance figures!

I'd like to see a decent band included in the price, and to be honest I'd have the band and bar in the same room, that'd ensure a decent turnout. If the odd miserable git doesn't like music let them go outside, or to a different room. This isn't so extreme, smokers already do it.

Following Chris's logic:

Do you want to attend a lecture? Yes? You'll need to pay for it.
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Offline kay

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #30 on: October 07, 2013, 10:18:42 am »
If additional (ancillary) elements are, as you claim. not a burdensome extra cost (i.e. drain on the net donation going forward to Ghar Parau) then why not augment Hidden Earth with a firework show, goodie bags with slices of cake to take home, car stickers and whatever else is viewed as a standard part of the event?

Why not? - if it brought in enough extra people to cover the cost.

Quote

The acid test is this:

Do you want a Hidden Earth T-shirt? Yes? You'll need to pay for it.
Do you want to attend the Conference evening meal? Yes? You'll need to pay for it.
Do you want to use the camping facilities? Yes? You'll need to pay for it.
Do you want to attend the Stomp?

Do you want to visit the Trade Hall?
Do you want to have a go on the BCA "cave"?
Do you want your club to have a  stand?
Do you want to enter one of the competitions?

All of these have some associated costs which could be charged for.

The acid test is not comparison with other things that you have to or don't have to pay for separately, the acid test, if you are focusing on the donation to Ghar Parau, is whether the overall profit would be greater with the Stomp paid for separately or as part of the entry fee.



Offline mrodoc

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #31 on: October 07, 2013, 10:53:00 am »
Might as well join the discussion. Bottlebank seems to be of the opinion that you can socialise in a bar with a band playing. The answer is no and it has always been thus. I may be of pensionable age but even when I was a student it was extremely annoying to go somewhere to an event where you couldn't move somewhere quiet for a chat and a bar seems the obvious answer. I like live music (still go to  concerts and festivals) but you definitely need a quiet area. At HE this year it was a problem that the disco and bar were so close. Perhaps we should go back to what used to happen namely a ceilidh and a stomp (I am thinking back to the late 70's and 80's)! So have loud music we can bop to but keep make sure there is a quiet zone as well.

BTW in the list of stuff Chris mentioned as give aways there are couple of good ideas eg promotional car stickers. Perhaps HE organizers could think about that for next year. Also some of us do go to lectures - all the ones I attended were well supported.


Offline mrodoc

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #32 on: October 07, 2013, 10:56:49 am »
Mrs. G. thinks I have been hard on the arrangements at HE this year and felt that they  were fine so I will retract that bit so I don't get a  :spank:!

Offline Peter Burgess

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #33 on: October 07, 2013, 11:03:47 am »
You can go to a live music event or disco anywhere. Where else can you go to a caving conference and be educated/entertained by stories of cavers and their daring do's?

Don't forget what the primary purpose of a conference is. That's what the core cost should cover.


Offline Peter Burgess

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #34 on: October 07, 2013, 11:23:35 am »
Oh, and Disco or Band is neither here nor there for me so I haven't voted. The social element of the event makes the weekend of great value to the caving scene, but people socialise in a variety of ways, music and drinking being just one, albeit very significant.

Offline kay

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #35 on: October 07, 2013, 11:31:18 am »
You can go to a live music event or disco anywhere. Where else can you go to a caving conference and be educated/entertained by stories of cavers and their daring do's?

Don't forget what the primary purpose of a conference is. That's what the core cost should cover.

The primary purpose of a conference includes "networking" and most organisers of conferences try to facilitate that.

I spent a large chunk of my working life attending various scientific conferences. The cost was (obviously) greater than Hidden Earth, but always included tea and coffee, and lunch. If the conference lasted more than a single day, it usually included some sort of evening reception. And the bigger conferences, certainly the international ones, included accommodation, dinners in the evening, they often had a free afternoon with various outings arranged, and there might be a reduced fee for partners covering food and accommodation and some activities.

It would be interesting to know - if the cost of Hidden Earth were reduced to, say, £18 per day but you had to pay extra for the stomp, and a small fee (say 50p) for each competition you entered, etc ... so that the costs covered lectures and nothing else at all ....  would you still go?

Or, if you don't go, would you be more likely to if the cost were lower but only included lectures?

(Figures from the top of my head - I have no idea what the Stomp etc costs when spread over all people attending. But I imagine the largest cost by far would be the hire of the venue)

Offline Cap'n Chris

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #36 on: October 07, 2013, 11:31:34 am »
If additional (ancillary) elements are, as you claim. not a burdensome extra cost (i.e. drain on the net donation going forward to Ghar Parau) then why not augment Hidden Earth with a firework show, goodie bags with slices of cake to take home, car stickers and whatever else is viewed as a standard part of the event?

Why not? - if it brought in enough extra people to cover the cost.

Quote
The acid test is not comparison with other things that you have to or don't have to pay for separately, the acid test, if you are focusing on the donation to Ghar Parau, is whether the overall profit would be greater with the Stomp paid for separately or as part of the entry fee.

So which is it?

On the one hand you seem to be saying it's OK to have ancillary, non-core events so long as they bring in sufficient additional (i.e. secondary ticketing revenue) money to cover their cost...

.... but on the other you seem to be saying it's OK to include ancillary, non-core events in a single entry fee provided you end up selling more tickets than you might otherwise sell (probably impossible to determine unless you compare parallel universes) and as a result cover the additional costs incurred by staging them.

Offline cavegirl99

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #37 on: October 07, 2013, 11:42:38 am »
The trouble with charging extra for the Stomp is that you will get loads of people who do want to go to it, but don't want to pay.  It means you need volunteers to man the door and what has happened in the past is that loads of people just loiter outside until the door staff get fed up trying to stop people without tickets getting in.  This means a poor attendance at the start of the stomp.
I think you get better attendance if the stomp is free, even if that does load the ticket price for people that aren't interested in it.
I agree that it is important to also have a quiet area for people who aren't interested in the music.
And as it is impossible to please everyone all the time, either sticking with a disco, where a variety of music can be played over the evening, or alternating between a band and disco is probably the best bet.

Offline Peter Burgess

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #38 on: October 07, 2013, 11:45:06 am »
It seems quite clear to me that if enough people to make it a success attend a music event and pay for it separately, then those that do so are probably happy with the status quo. A few more people may attend if the cost was subsidied by those that stay away, but if the events are patronised, those that patronise it enjoy themselves, and the event pays for itself, then what precisely is the problem? The only issue as originally raised is what kind of music event should it be.

Offline Cap'n Chris

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #39 on: October 07, 2013, 12:09:00 pm »
The problem is that I know of people who enjoy attending Hidden Earth and yet who would refrain from going if they knew they had no choice but to pay a higher ticket price which was subsidising a stomp which they had no interest in. They would miss out, the overall take would be less, fewer people would attend etc. etc..

Personally I'm all for the stomp (having played many in the past in a band, including at least two Hidden Earths), but would not attend any longer as my interest in live music has declined. A disco (free at the point of delivery), however, IS something I would tolerate!

Offline estelle

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #40 on: October 07, 2013, 01:05:36 pm »
One of the things that the caving community seems to be trying hard to drive is increasing the number of younger cavers as they are our future. I suspect if you took away the stomp/party aspect, then you'd lose a lot of the younger cavers who choose to come now... We can't please everyone all the time, but i think it's important to encourage the younger generation to turn up and they are usually also the ones with the least money so keeping the stomp as part of the general entry fee and hence 'free' is likely to matter to them more, although i bet they spend far more than the stomp would have cost at the bar! ;)
I'm one of those people like cavegirl99 describes below who does like to dip into the stomp and would like to have a boogie here and there over the evening, but not enough to bother to pay for it outside of the general admission costs of the event as for me the spare time outside of lectures is about making the most of HE to catch up chatting with people i don't see often so don't want to devote all evening to the stomp. I can understand from reading the above that some cavers perhaps don't want the noise of the stomp or all the drunks about at all, but what would those that don't want the stomp/piss up prefer to do on the Saturday evening? I thought the Monmouth venue was excellent for having the balcony area a little away from the band/bar allowing those wanting a bit more quiet to chat to do so while keeping the entertainment close at hand.
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Offline Bottlebank

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #41 on: October 07, 2013, 01:26:01 pm »
I wasn't suggesting that you can socialise close up to a live band, of course it helps to have a quieter area.

Can we get some perspective on this - we've booked a couple of live bands for bashes in the last couple of years, and generally the majority of cavers attending have loved them. There have been a few who preferred to move further away and chat quietly but they were very much in the minority. A band will play for an hour and half to two hours, so doesn't absorb the entire evening.

And again, some perspective on cost. A live band costs around £150 to £200 - ok you can pay more if you want but you don't need to - you can get a superb band for this. This isn't a huge amount I suspect in conference terms - I don't see the need to charge extra for it - and if you have the band playing in the same venue as the bar your drinks sales will increase, just selling one extra barrel would cover this.
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Offline Bottlebank

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #42 on: October 07, 2013, 01:39:49 pm »
You can go to a live music event or disco anywhere. Where else can you go to a caving conference and be educated/entertained by stories of cavers and their daring do's?

Don't forget what the primary purpose of a conference is. That's what the core cost should cover.

I can (and sometimes feel I do) listen to stories of cavers reliving their tails of daring do fifty two weeks a year - never needed to go to conference for that one :-)

The prime purpose of the conference in my mind is whatever the people attending want it to be, for some it's social, for others it's lectures, and so on, It could be a long list.

The organisers have a rough job accomodating the wishes of everyone - but my own pitiful attendance record would probably improve slightly if there was a decent live band on the Saturday.  Of course siting it in the Dales every year would help more but that's a different argument :-)
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Offline moorebooks

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #43 on: October 07, 2013, 03:16:21 pm »

I think the organisers have a hard enough time persuading the hard up caving public to attend the event, there must be a significant number who only come along for one day which is testament to that.

Surely the whole idea is to make it economic enough for people to choose what they want to do over and above the basics. As someone says above you can buy the extras as you want  as surely the principle purpose of the conference is to enable expeditions to report back having received grants, for different interests to present achievements and inspire others.

Perhaps then the conference fee should be £45 for a weekend then no extras would be charged you would need a bloody big dining area for the conference dinner though

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Offline Les W

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #44 on: October 07, 2013, 03:44:05 pm »
At HE this year it was a problem that the disco and bar were so close.

There was a separate bar at the far end of the balcony...
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Offline menacer

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #45 on: October 07, 2013, 04:41:26 pm »

And again, some perspective on cost. A live band costs around £150 to £200 - ok you can pay more if you want but you don't need to - you can get a superb band for this. This isn't a huge amount I suspect in conference terms - I don't see the need to charge extra for it -

AFAIK The bands have always been successful and Hidden Earth has in the past always charged for it.

In not charging for it, not only does it becomes an expense partly (albeit miniscule figures) absorbed by those who dont want it, but worstly (is that a word)  neither can the HE event  make a profit from it. :( 
 
So heres an idea.
Why not charge £25 for the saturday night stomp and make the conference free. No? thought not.  ;) Gets coat, Les said he'd regret posting on this  ;D


« Last Edit: October 07, 2013, 04:56:04 pm by menacer »
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Offline kay

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #46 on: October 07, 2013, 05:15:14 pm »

So which is it?

On the one hand you seem to be saying it's OK to have ancillary, non-core events so long as they bring in sufficient additional (i.e. secondary ticketing revenue) money to cover their cost...

.... but on the other you seem to be saying it's OK to include ancillary, non-core events in a single entry fee provided you end up selling more tickets than you might otherwise sell (probably impossible to determine unless you compare parallel universes) and as a result cover the additional costs incurred by staging them.

I was answering different points in both those quotes.

From my perspective the aim of Hidden Earth is to bring cavers together in a  conference to exchange knowledge and get to know cavers from different regions. If a non-core activity adds to the event as a whole, and brings in enough revenue to cover its cost, then there is no problem in adding it.

You put forward as an "acid test" a series of comparisons, eg that T shirts are paid for. But you also advanced as the main aim  the donation to Ghar Parau. If you view Hidden Earth as a charity fund-raising event, then you add things which will bring in more people (or persuade those that do come to pay more), and thus increase the money raised. And the "acid test" is then how much money you raise, not whether people pay for t-shirts or dinners.




Offline kay

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #47 on: October 07, 2013, 05:25:02 pm »

Perhaps then the conference fee should be £45 for a weekend then no extras would be charged you would need a bloody big dining area for the conference dinner though


There's a key difference between the Stomp, which is a one-off costs irrespective of numbers participating,  and things like t-shirts and dinners, which is a constant cost per caver.

How many people go to Hidden Earth? If it were 800 (and I think it's more than that), then the cost of a band for the Stomp would, on Bottlebank's  figures, be 25p on the entry fee. Whereas the cost of providing a free dinner would be £14.95.

Offline Bottlebank

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #48 on: October 07, 2013, 05:26:23 pm »

In not charging for it, not only does it becomes an expense partly (albeit miniscule figures) absorbed by those who dont want it, but worstly (is that a word)  neither can the HE event  make a profit from it. :( 


I think "worst" would have been fine :-)

That's pretty short sighted.

If the end result is increased attendance of course they make a profit - not only on conference fees but also on beer.

I think if you refuse to include things simply because a few boring old buggers don't want them you'd have to rule out pretty much everything the conference does do?

Common sense suggests that if you want a successful conference you not only consider what people who do go want but also want people who don't go would be looking for to persuade them to make the effort.
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Offline Bottlebank

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Re: Hidden Earth Stomp!
« Reply #49 on: October 07, 2013, 05:34:27 pm »
I agree with Kay posted whilst I was typing that, equally if you encourage higher particiption by investing in fixed cost events you'll also get a far higher return on sales - t-shirts, beer etc. 

You'll also get a better return on your existing investment - if the room is already paid for - why not use it? I'm certain turning a room into a stomp/disco venue for one evening hasn't cost a penny extra - at least at the (few) ones I've been to recently.

It partly depends what the organisers want to achieve - for all I know they may want to fix numbers. But if they want to increase from say 800, to 1000, they need to be talking to people (like me) who for example don't make the effort to attend conferences down South, when they live in the North West. Find out what would change that.

Les may regret bringing up the topic, but at least it's getting some ideas out!
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