Note: The video for the State of the Word was later posted to WordPress.tv. Posting a recording shortly after the live presentation is great, but still doesn't negate the need for a free stream of such an important presentation.
Today marks the second day of WordCamp San Francisco. The second day of the "official annual conference of the WordPress community." The day of Matt Mulleweg, WordPress co-founder, presenting the annual State of the Word - the presentation that both reflects on the past year of WordPress and the direction of the coming year.
And you can't stream the talk for free.
To see the talk in person costs you a minimum of $40 plus travel to San Francisco. To watch the talk live on a stream costs you $10 - admittedly not a huge expense, but a barrier nonetheless.
Add the fact that WordCamp San Francisco lacks any sort of "official" naming aside from the insistence of organizers that it is, in fact, the one WordCamp to rule them all, and it's no wonder so many people miss it. Yes, it's in Automattic's hometown. Yes, it's one of the few WordCamps that count Matt as a speaker.[ref]To my knowledge the only WordCamp that counts him as an organizer.[/ref]
But to all appearances to non-insiders, it's just a WordCamp in an expensive city that throws a barrier even on its livestream tickets. Few WordCamps do that.
Few "official annual conference[s] of the [whatever] project" do that, either.
Apple's annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) is far more expensive than WordCamp - tickets run $1,599 each. It's also far more exclusive; potential attendees apply to attend and are randomly selected. They still have to pay a hefty sum, though.
But the keynotes - you know the "one more thing" Jobsian presentations - are streamed live. On Apple.com. For free.
The presentation that reflects on the past year of challenges and sets the tone for the year to come. The most important presentation Apple can make (from the perspective of the consumer) is streamed free of charge for all to see.
For WordPress, you have to pay $10 or wait a few weeks for organizers to get around to posting the video to WordPress.tv. You also have to be enough of an insider to realize that WordCamp San Francisco is really WordPress' version of WWDC ... otherwise you might miss the opportunity entirely.
Do we still have no issues with WordCamps, naming, and WordCamp San Francisco?[ref]I've been criticized, yelled at, and told to back off by many on this point. But it's not one I can give up. When I tell people I won't be at WCSF this year and that I'm disappointed, only the WP insiders seem to understand. Others at meetups, online, or just chatting in person about the project scratch their head and ask why. They don't see the point of traveling for a WordCamp when we can have one here. When I finally get through to them the "official" status of WCSF, they're then frustrated they have to pay for a stream ticket. The comparison I hear most often is one to Apple's WWDC - "I never had to pay to hear Jobs pitch his 'one more thing.'" So yes, it's still a problem. Merely calling it resolved and sticking your head in the sand is not a solution.[/ref]