- ULB Solbosch Campus, Brussels, Belgium
As usual, FSFE had a booth at FOSDEM 2018.
It is no secret that participation in FSFE's booth at FOSDEM can be one of the most exciting and rewarding jobs FSFE has to offer at all. So this year, we again had a huge team of motivated staff and volunteers behind and in front of the booth, which made it possible to handle presence at the booth very flexible, so everybody could leave have a break or visit a talk whenever they wanted.
Like last year, we made use of a shipping agency to get information material and merchandise from Berlin to Brussels and back. This time, we directed the delivery directly to ULB on Friday afternoon, where Ulrike, Jan and a few volunteers stood ready to unload the packages and bring them directly to the FSFE booth space. For the way back, a volunteer living in Brussels fetched the remaining material at ULB on Sunday evening and stored it at her home until later during the week the shipping agency came to pick it up and transport it back to Berlin.
Everything worked very well this year.
Many of the booth team shared the impression that this FOSDEM saw even more visitors than ever before. At least in past years, from time to time it was calm at the booth and the booth team had time to talk to each other, this year there virtually wasn't a single minute when not at least one visitor was at the booth talking to us.
After the last year's record sale, we didn't expect to exceed that, but this year's FOSDEM topped everything we ever had: 495 (!!) T-shirts, 75 hoodies, 46 bags, and 34 baby bibs, as well as bags full of smaller items, most notably over 100 "There is NO CLOUD" magnets. We were quite caught by surprise about the sales of children's T-shirts and zipped hoodies, which both were completely sold out in most sices way before the event was over.
Traditionally, FOSDEM was the place to take a lot of Photographs for the “I ♥ Free Software” campaign.
Many people already arrived during Friday, so the first meetup was on Friday night 20:30 at Goupil le Fol - thanks to Erik for organising this!
On Saturday evening, we invited everybody interested to meet us at The Funky Monkey, and even though there was a little back-and-forth about the corner of the pub which would be assigned to our group, in the end it was a nice place to be.
On Sunday evening finally, we went to Place Jourdan to eat the best fries in town, sat into Chez Bernard, where you can take the fries with you. Sitting there in this very nice round, with excellent fries and the good feeling of having survived FOSDEM, is an experience that we most probably want to repeat in the years to come!
Again, FOSDEM was a great experience to work with a great team during 2 very intense days. As Cryptie put it: “If you aren't tired after FOSDEM, you haven't been at FOSDEM”