RTFM Education – Virtualization, VMware, Citrix

May 30 2009   2:30AM GMT

VMworld Exhibitor T&C – Storm in a proverbial teacup?

MikeLaverick MikeLaverick Profile: MikeLaverick

In recent days there’s been a number of blog posts about a change in VMware’s VMworld 2009 T&C for exhibitors. Ranging from the relatively measured

http://www.brianmadden.com/blogs/brianmadden/archive/2009/05/28/for-shame-vmware-is-now-banning-competing-vendors-products-from-vmworld.aspx

http://blog.scottlowe.org/2009/05/28/vmware-this-is-wrong/

http://itknowledgeexchange.techtarget.com/server-virtualization/vmworld-2009-contract-verbiage-causes-kerfuffle/

My favourite one is the last one with the word “kerfuffle”. It makes me think of the chap in Little Britain who pushes the “Andy” the fake disable guy around in his wheelchair.

 

This kerfuffle evolved into out right ridiculious venting…

http://www.ideationcloud.com/2009/05/holy-shite-vmworld-no-more-the-independent-virtualization-event/

Until VMware World staff tried to quash the story with its own response…

http://www.virtualization.info/2009/05/is-vmworld-still-open-for-competition.html

Anyway, I wanted to put my take on the whole mater. Firstly, whilst the phrasology of the statement could have been put better (I assume that’s some legal technicality that it HAS to be phrased in such away) I don’t think its the game changer that many people assume. The policy change as I see it is to curb the somewhat extreme acts that exhibitors will go to – from MS handing dollar chips on laminated cards saying that “vmware costs way to much” to noisy exhibitors who create huge audiences with prize giveaway choaking up the alley ways of the solution exchange with people hoping to get a freebie by wearing a t-shirt. Neither practise are particular sporting activities if you ask me. You know as people from England would say “It just isn’t cricket, old bean…”

Secondly, people have articulated worries that VMware will seek to restrict the size of pitches to its rivals like Citrix and Microsoft – and dominate the event with its own agenda and software. The funny thing is VMware already does this! By far the biggest exhibitor on the solutions exchange is VMware. Well, no shit Sherlock as some folks would say. Would you spend a truck load of money on setting up an international convention, only put yourself in the smallest booth possible round the back near the toliets?

VMware has always welcomed Citrix and Microsoft (back when one of them didn’t even have a true virtualization solution!!!) but at the same time has always restricted these big companies or OEMs “buying its way” into the biggest pitch in the solutions exchange, thus squeezing the “little guys” out of the picture. Again if I was VMware – the last thing I would want is to put an event together, which is then totally hijacked by major competitor thus upsetting all my other small partners who equally valued in the channel. 

The reality is – as with all rules & regulations is that people put them in place – because you CANNOT rely on good will and fair play of all the folks taking part. In fact I’m suprised that VMware didn’t do this from the get go when VMworld was first created. These T&Cs must exist because the relationship between the conferrence and the exhbitor is a contactual one. It’s a financial undertaking – as such ANY event organiser would then impose acceptable behaviour clauses to protect the event and the other sponsors from being abused by another exhibitor who shameless takes the piss out the proceedings…

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