Money and DebConf

I am having a hard couple of days trying to decide what to do with respect attending to DebConf in Argentina. Nothing new on planet, I know. I could buy my flights for about 1150 euros now. And that is only the flights, the travel expenses are more than that.

The reasons that do not motivate too much to buy the tickets at this moment are:

  • I do not think I will get sponsorship (I am above position 20 in the queue) and since I would have to take the month off at work, that will mean a month without income as well.
  • The looooooong trip, my “cheap” flights are via Uruguay with a duration of about 30 hours. Then when you arrive to Buenos Aires, go to Mar de Plata, that is about 6 hours trip. By the way, a trip that costs ~ 37 euros extra. And I do not think somebody else will take the same flights, so it will be boooooring too :(
  • Due a lot of people not getting sponsorship and DebConf being so far for most of Debian contributors, I am expecting a smaller and more familiar DebConf. One of the key points of DebConf is meeting the people you work with, and I would be the only member of the KDE team (it is true we are a small team, but yet…), and similar with another teams.

The current budget of DebConf basically does not have spare money for sponsoring travel, so far the money we got from the sponsors is just for covering the basic stuff we need for the conference: venue and lodging.
This is not a fault at all of the debconf team, actually we are lucky this year we have a more experienced team that in the previous years (key people have been involved in Debconf for years now) and they are acting very professionally. It is the effect of both: DebConf in Argentina being more expensive than expected and getting more money from sponsors. We clearly need more sponsors, and then is where the bit “We (as a project) suck at marketing” enters.


I’m going to ground myself working in KDE stuff for the next couple of days to avoid thinking about this.