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Candidate Q&A - Director of Programming 2019


This thread is for questions and answers for the candidates for the 2019 Director of Programming of Altonimbus Entertainment.

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I know the construction caused some hiccups causing the schedule to come out later this year, but in past years one compliant I hear from friends is that the schedule comes out too close to con. Do you have any plans to help get it finished earlier?

The short answer is better communication and coordination with content creators.

There are literally hundreds of people and hundreds of work hours that go into crafting the convention schedule. The programming department is the hub of this work, but we just organize the work of others. For us to do our job on time, it's critical that we get all the information from guests, panelists, event coordinators, and zone managers on time. It's our philosophy that we should wait for change requests to settle before we send out the schedule to attendees. This is so you can plan your weekend with some level of confidence that the panels will still happen by the time you make it to convention. No one wants a schedule that is posted early, but then immediately changes as we process all of the change requests.

The longer answer is that I have lot of ideas to try out:

* Be more active in the pre-planning part of securing guest and industry content so we can set aside an appropriate amount of space for that top tier content.
* Cultivate a group of dependable panelists by rewarding those who don't cancel their panels at the last minute.
* Develop a wait list of panelists that are flexible enough to be dropped into an open slot at the last minute.
* Work with development staff to allow bulk import of events (we have to manually enter most items).
* Be more granular with fan panel time restrictions so we can avoid conflicts in the initial schedule.
* Identify major events that happen each year and announce times before fan panel submissions open.
* Pray that people only submit panels that they actually plan to run.I had the opportunity to be a part of the scheduling process this year and it was a lot of late nights for a very small group of dedicated volunteers. They are the experts in scheduling content and I plan to listen to their wisdom on how best to approach the schedule. It's a lot harder than it looks and we all owe them a debt of gratitude for making sure that there was a method to the madness. I hope I am granted the opportunity to take a shot at solving this incredibly complex problem.

Devin Hunter
Nominee for Director of Programming

I’m a “four time panel host” (Ask on Titan 2015-2018). I’ve always run my panel when it was scheduled and I’ve never cancelled my panel at the last minute. So, I’m dependable (I wish I could say the same thing, when it comes to “co-panelists”).

Now, back on topic.

Currently, the Cosplay and Karaoke Contests are both in the evening of day two, which can be a nightmare, for people who want to see both events. So, my two questions are as follows; Would it be possible to have the Karaoke Contest on the morning of day two, with the Cosplay Contest remaining on the evening of day two? How would you handle this issue?

Thanks for being such a dependable panelist, it really helps!

As for scheduling, controlling when an event is schedule isn't always easy. A lot of our event times are dependent on the preferences and availability of those running said event. I like to think that anything is possible when the right conditions exist to allow it to happen. We won't really know until we get our coordinators lined up and we can start planning the events. As a new director, I plan to examine our scheduling traditions to make sure that they still serve our convention and our attendees. My goal is to make sure that our decisions are founded in good reasoning, and not do something because "that's how we've always done it."

I'm looking forward to having the chance to take on this challenge.

Devin Hunter
Nominee for Director of Programming


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