‘Non vendor events’

I noticed this in the digital advertising industry in the past few years. And I’m assuming that there is a similar trend among other industries.

Professional event companies are popping up that are creating short (1-2 day) events that are labelled as ‘non vendor events’.

‘Come to our event and you won’t be sold too!’

The idea isn’t terrible, and it makes a lot of sense. It (should) serve as more of a roundtable where you learn from other people in your field.

But unfortunately in most cases this isn’t what is happening. Rather ‘vendors’ are being charged exorbitant prices for the ability to attend the event.

Most of the speakers are paying to speak (not the opposite).

I get it, there is a business model for it. But something feels wrong.

Rather than curating the best in industry for speaking engagements – the highest bidder gets to speak. And these events continue to be marketed as ‘non vendor’.

‘Less vendors’ would probably be more accurate.