£5k buys me a lot of developer hours or gets me to five conferences

By Conor O'Neill | January 15, 2007

I was excited for a very short period this evening when I spotted on Ryan Carson’s blog that there was an opportunity for web app startups to get on stage for 10 minutes in front of the entire audience of FOWA. There were only three spots left. I was just about to shoot off an email saying “me me me” when I spotted the final line “The cost is £5k”.

I’m still stunned. Surely the only start-ups that can afford to spend 5k are the ones who are already funded and who don’t actually need the PR? I was highly critical of LeWeb3 but Loic deserves great credit for the start-up room idea where the cost was a big fat zero. I would never begrudge anyone making a few quid but it seems like the highest cost is being targeted at those least able to afford it.

I attended Ryan’s “How to Build a Web App” Workshop in July which I highly recommend to everyone I meet. One of the strongest messages I took from that was not to waste a penny. I honestly imagine Ryan tut-tutting me every time I buy a wifi voucher at an airport. I’m also reminded that Ryan got all of the DropSend branding and UI done for £5k.

I’m afraid £5k for 10 minutes in front of a room of heavy hitters simply makes no sense from a self-funded startup ROI perspective. I’ll spend £30 on a few pints to meet the people I really want to talk to.

I’ll be genuinely interested to see who does hand over the moolah to present.

UPDATE: It looks like Jason Calacanis and Mike Arrington agree with me. Here’s hoping we can get one of the slots at TechCrunch20.

comments powered by Disqus