XBIZ EU 2011 Review

The traveling XBIZ roadshow continued its journey from Chicago, IL in June to London, UK in September, with their first [that I recall] European show, XBIZ EU 2011. The adult B2B event was billed as being held September 23-25, but the only thing going on the 25th was the double-decker bus tour. There were two days of the actual show.

This was my first visit to London, so I was unaware that I needed to arrive at the airport a good 12 hours before my first appointment. Unbelievable. Gatwick has to be the slowest airport I have ever been through. Combine that with the distance factor, and suffice it to say I missed the speed networking and lunch the first day. By the time I arrived at the venue hotel, the Radisson Edwardian Bloomsbury, the seminars had begun.

XBIZEU was scheduled after Webmaster Access in Amsterdam and The European Summit in Prague; and before Oktoberfest. It was convenient as an American to be able to make one journey to attend all the shows, but it did seem to show with some of the panelists that were giving the same talk for the third time in a week. That being said, it appeared that there were new faces in the audience so it is safe to presume that bringing the event to London provided an opportunity to attend an adult trade show that had not been previously available to some.

The seminars were the standard fare of traffic, cams, dating, mobile and billing. When I announced that I would be coming to London, I mentioned that there would be a debate between Diane Duke of the Free Speech Coalition and Stuart Lawley of ICM Registry about .XXX. After the fiasco in Amsterdam between Hymes and Dumas, I was really hoping for more information. Instead, there was a lot of disinformation and nothing of much help to anyone that has to decide if .XXX is right for them. After spending time in Amsterdam, Prague and London, I am convinced that the USA point of view on the subject differs greatly from those that live in Europe. I guess that is a topic for another day.

If I felt like a hostage in Prague, London provided everything Prague lacked. You could literally step out the front door and be at a museum or restaurant, coffee shop or pub. The off premise events were frequently within walking distance and the video cameras equipped in all the cabs seems to keep everyone honest. Not once did I feel a cab driver was taking the long way just to pad his fare. I have to say that any preconceptions I had about the British being “prim and proper” went right out the window with the London Opening Bash. That was one insane party. I would also like to say thank you again to Damian Jennings and 3WaysCash for a great time on the bus tour. It was entertaining and gave a great quickie tour of London.

If there was a downside to XBIZEU 2011, London it was that I had hoped to meet more adult webmasters that lived in England. I was able to see just a couple and for the most part, they were people I already knew. I thought that the free admission for affiliates would help, but that only applied to people that stayed at the show hotel. When I asked people why they did not attend, the reasons were primarily financial. It is one thing to give free admission to affiliates, but if they have to pay a few hundred dollars a night to stay at a hotel in order to get that free admission, it does not really make sense, and I can understand that. It might be something for show promoters to consider if they really want to attract more local affiliates.

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