After having been responsible for stage management and moderation at various events for several years now, we got together again in the moderation team of the CCC events to prepare this year’s congress. This year’s congress took place for the first time in Leipzig, as the Congress Center Hamburg was partly demolished due to a new building and renovation.
Presenters at CCC events are traditionally called Herald.
Due to private developments with @lindworm and me and due to the increased burden of moving to a new location, we decided this year as an unusual exception not to do a casting like we did at the 32c3 or 33c3 and to invite only Heralde, who have already gained experience on the 32c3 or 33c3. We contacted about 60 moderators who had proven themselves in previous years. A total of 38 of them responded to our invitation, had a ticket and wanted to be a herald again on the 34c3.
We have reduced the additional workload that has arisen in recent years as a result of organizing the stage managers, this year by including another person in our organisation team who has been a experienced stage manager in previous years. Katzazi is the new team coordinator of the stage managers and was in Leipzig in 2017 for the first time in this responsible position.
This year we expected 170-180 talks in the planning phase, i. e. about 20-30 talks more than in the 33c3, but the duration of the daily lecture program was not reduced, the increased number of lectures was realized by eliminating one of the two daily breaks and shortening the lectures. At 33c3, the amount of heralds was about two to three lectures per herald compared to the amount of lectures. That was not enough for us, with so few lectures the individual cannot gain enough experience and get enough practice. Due to the increased number of lectures and the slightly decreased amount of herald (because we didn’t do any casting), there were about 4 lectures per herald this year.
On the day before the event we met in Leipzig, welcomed the herald and made the herald familiar with the special features of the building and the necessary changes. At the same time, Katzazi conducted the introductory event for the stage managers.
Altogether we had about 48 stage managers and 38 Heralde, who carried out the 172 lectures professionally and ensured that most of the talks started and ended on time. Due to the larger number of talks, as well as the reduction of breaks and the unknown building, we were not able to reach the same punctuality level as with the 32c3 or 33c3. The crowd control area in particular caused some headaches on the first two days, as we sometimes had to set up waiting areas for several thousand people on short notice, while the same number of people left the room.
Also the reaction time and the situational attention of the full-time sound and lighting engineers, who were provided by the CCL for our event, left a lot to be desired and caused further delays in the program flow and a suboptimal audio quality of the video recordings of the talks, here we hope for a clear improvement in the next year.
The stage managers were the central point for information in the hall during the entire event and ensured that all trades acted in time and received all necessary information.
While active crowd control in Hamburg happened only rarely, in Leipzig this procedure became much more frequent and happened at most of the lectures in the Adams and Borg rooms. Although Lindworm and I were already busy with the organisation of the Heralde, we didn’t miss the opportunity to host a few lectures ourselves and had a lot of fun on stage again.
We are looking forward to the 35c3!
Image Credits: The Header-image is CC0 licensed and was taken by an anonymous photographer. It does violate our photo-policy, because we don’t allow long-shots or panoramic pictures like these. It was published nonetheless and was heavily blurred and pixelated by me, before I reposted the image with permission of the creator. I have communicated with other people from Congress-Orga to determine how much blurring/pixelation is necessary, to make this picture acceptable. Please respect our CCC photo policy. Thanks for the permission to use this picture.
The other image, the one that is inside the article, was taken by @herrfrankmann and was postprocessed, blurred and pixelated by me. Thanks for the permission to use it!
The bottom image of the empty Hall “Adams” was taken by @da_waschtl. Thanks for the permission to use it!