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TMCNet:  NY paper claims SXSW has 'lost its compass' [Austin American-Statesman :: ]

[March 10, 2014]

NY paper claims SXSW has 'lost its compass' [Austin American-Statesman :: ]

(Austin American-Statesman (TX) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) March 10--Has South by Southwest "lost its compass" this year? That's what one newspaper says.

In an article that ran over the weekend, the New York Post claimed the festival has "gotten too big for its britches and is trying to be all things to all people." Lots of attendees are grumbling, according to the Post, and some are even threatening not to return.


From the article: "Michael Fernandez, founder of New York experiential marketing firm Factory 360, told The Post: 'Traffic is at a standstill. You can't even get into keynotes. There are overflow rooms for overflow rooms. The frustration level is high.'" But regular attendees know those aren't exactly new gripes. They've been around the past several years as SXSW has grown.

The newspaper also claimed that Austin's hotels are as bad as the ones where journalists and other attendees were forced to stay during the Winter Olympics.

What are they basing that on? One woman's shocking discovery when she entered her room at that Hyatt Regency Austin.

Brooke Hammerling of Brew Media Relations said on Twitter that she opened the door to her room and found it was already occupied by "a half-dressed man." Oopsy.

Went to my room & walked in on dude who had same room and was not expecting guests if u know what I mean. #safetylocks#HyattRegency#sxsw -- Brooke Hammerling (@brooke) March 7, 2014 When Hammerling told hotel staffers what had happened, she said they were "gracious and lovely but I didn't want to stay though they were so apologetic." She ultimately found a room at the Four Seasons Hotel Austin, where the Hyatt surprised her with a special delivery.

"Holy moly," Hammerling tweeted. "Class act of @hyattaustin to send flowers and wine and most importantly CHEESE to me at the Four Seasons." Holy moly. Class act of @hyattaustin to send flowers and wine and most importantly CHEESE to me at the Four Seasons. pic.twitter.com/fqHTQZHhbu -- Brooke Hammerling (@brooke) March 7, 2014 ___ (c)2014 Austin American-Statesman, Texas Visit Austin American-Statesman, Texas at www.statesman.com Distributed by MCT Information Services

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