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AFS Review: News

No WiFi in Meeting Rooms at 2013 AFS Annual Meeting

Friday, April 26, 2013   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Lorraine Cashman
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Although free WiFi is increasingly available at many corner coffee shops, it isn’t the standard for meeting rooms at conference sites. With a few exceptions, the hotels that host the AFS annual meeting charge AFS around $200 per room, per day, for internet access, wireless or hard-wired; even then, the number of connections is typically limited, as it was in New Orleans, to one connection per room. It is becoming typical for organizations sponsoring conferences to pass on these charges to their attendees in the form of higher registration fees, but we have resisted that trend.

The Providence Omni, site of the 2013 Annual Meeting, is offering complimentary internet access in its guest rooms and in the hotel lobby, but not in the conference rooms. Because the internet access fees they are going to charge AFS are well beyond the AFS annual meeting budget, given our current registration rates, we will not be providing internet access in meeting rooms this year.

Instead, we ask presenters to use more traditional methods to access presentation materials from the Internet – come with your slides or video, screen shots, etc., downloaded on an external storage device, ready to play on the laptop that, as always, you or one of your session-mates will have to provide. (As has been our long-standing custom, AFS will provide only LCD projectors and screens in all rooms, and will provide audiospeakers only upon request--see 2013 Audio/Visual Support for more information.) If your presentation is impossible without live, real-time internet access, contact Lorraine Walsh Cashman at as soon as possible.

Going forward, AFS will continue to assess members' current annual meeting communications needs, and to make every effort to negotiate the best possible package with future conference venues.

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