Cable Groups Weigh Consolidating Events

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Responding to concerns from executives at major cable operators, leaders from several industry trade groups and associations plan to gather in New York Oct. 22 to discuss consolidating industry events.

While the discussions, being led by the National Cable & Telecommunications Association, are preliminary, the talks could eventually yield a week in the spring each year that would include several industry events, similar to Diversity Week events that are held each fall and “Spring Break” events that occur in New York City the same week as the annual Cable Positive benefit. This coming week, in Denver, other events have been scheduled to draw people in town for the annual Cable Hall of Fame event at The Cable Center.

“We thought it was important to collaborate with the leaders of many other associations and societies in the industry to see if there might be an opportunity to do a more efficient job of scheduling industry events around several major time periods in the course of the year,” NCTA senior vice president of communications Rob Stoddard said last week.

Concerns that led to the meeting were raised by the CEOs of some of the major multiple-system operators, who expressed concern about the time spent by staff to attend several meetings throughout the year, in addition to travel expenses.

A team led by NCTA senior vice president of industry affairs Barbara York is leading the New York meeting.

Invites have gone out to several groups including the Cable & Telecommunications Association for Marketing, Cable Positive, the Cable and Telecommunications Human Resources Association, the Society of Cable Telecommunications Engineers, CableLabs, Women in Cable Telecommunications and the Association of Cable Communicators.

CableFAX Daily founder Paul Maxwell wrote about NCTA looking at consolidating events in a Sept. 24 column that cited a discussion at the organization's Sept. 19 board meeting, held ahead of the Walter Kaitz Foundation dinner in New York.

Industry leaders might consider scheduling several events around the week of The Cable Show. The next annual NCTA convention will be held May 18 to 20, in New Orleans.

But while it is possible some new events could be added as soon as May to The Cable Show, Stoddard emphasized that NCTA is taking a “balanced and reasoned” approach to the scheduling of events.

If changes are to be made to the cable industry's events calendar, it's likely they would be made over a longer period of time, he said.