RustConf 2017 and the US travel ban


#1

As you are likely aware, the US has recently instituted a travel ban based on country of origin for several countries. This ban has a religious focus and is already doing harm to some of the most vulnerable people in the world. Speaking for myself, and many others involved in Rust leadership: the ban is not just counterproductive, it’s wrong.

One way that the ban could affect the Rust community directly is with events like RustConf. We recently announced the dates and location for RustConf 2017 – in the US. In particular, we have already placed a large deposit on the venue, which would be forfeited if we were to relocate.

Nevertheless, we wanted to reach out to the community, to understand how the travel ban might affect people who would otherwise want to attend RustConf 2017. It’s not a straightforward calculation, since for many people leaving the US may not be so easy (due to the need for passports and possible risk of being denied re-entry, as well as the greater expense). @skade also made a good argument that a more positive approach is to put additional support behind more Rust events worldwide, including sending Rust team members (which we already do). RustFest, for example, will continue to be held in Europe, and there’s been some talk about potential in South America as well.

Given all of that context: if you have concerns about how your immigration status and the location (whether inside the United States or outside it) will impact your ability to attend RustConf this year, please reply on this thread or email me (confidentially) at aturon@mozilla.com.

EDIT: clarification: the option remains on the table to move the conference, but given the costs and disruption, we want to hear from those affected (and to consider total coverage of Rust conferences worldwide) before reaching a decision.


#2

As one of the organizers of one of the conferences last year, I would love to see more conferences about Rust that more people can attend, if at all possible, no matter what. If anyone is thinking about running a conference and has any questions, I’m willing to answer questions and help out as best I can.


#3

To be clear: forfeiting our deposit and moving elsewhere is an option on the table, but we wanted to hear from the affected community members, and understand whether we can get sufficient coverage with the totality of Rust conferences being planned this year.


#4

I’ll be very happy helping to do a great event here in Sao Paulo - Brazil


#5

American here. I’m almost certainly going if it is in the states. If it is overseas, it’ll be less likely that I can go. This isn’t a problem with visas, it’s just the cost in time and money become much harder to justify. I know this probably isn’t the feedback you are looking for, but the reason I bring this up is I doubt I’m the only one in the situation. Maybe if it moves, to minimize costs for Americans, we could pick a country near The States that is still friendly to visiting professionals. Maybe Mexico or Canada?

That being said, I completely understand if it moves outside the country and won’t have any hard feelings about it. Thanks for the hard work in putting the conference on and tackling this problem head on.


#6

If it were to be moved it would almost certainly be to Canada - the most realistic proposal so far has been to colocate with SLPASH Con in Vancouver. However to be absolutely clear, unless there is a contrary announcement in the next few days, the time and location of RustConf has not been changed.


#7

If you organize a Rust conference in Brazil, I’d submit a talk in a heartbeat. :slight_smile:


#8

I can’t speak for anyone affected by the travel ban, but it’s possible that moving it outside of the US could actually cause more problems than it solves. If there’s anyone already in the US subject to the ban, then it would prevent them from leaving and coming back into the States.

I think that @skade’s idea is good, to try to make sure there are more events outside of the US if at all possible, rather than moving RustConf.


#9

For a lot of people USA is “overseas” :slight_smile:

I can try to create local “mirror” of this event in Barcelona, Spain, if there will be some instructions from you and global youtube channel to share.

See examples of ng-conf “extended”: example 1, example 2.


#10

This is a completely ridiculous, and while Rust ought to be what it is: a programming language, I think this harms the community and is worth strongly condemning, like Twitter, Reddit, Facebook, Google, Github, and many other have done.

This is just batshit crazy and makes US seems like a complete joke. I suggest hosting it in Europe (perhaps Germany or UK) instead of the proposed location Canada:

  1. Traveling from US to Canada requires flying (in most cases) anyway.

  2. There are at least as many Europeans as there are Americans in the Rust community.

The disadvantage is that it’s longer away from Asia.


#11

Another possibility is Mexico, which would be a pretty funny location for obvious reasons.


#12

Consider making the event valuable for those that can’t physically attend a priority. Video recordings and archives of the talks, of course, but think about what else is possible in terms of online participations.


#13

Survey data indicates: more. But I’ve made my opinion rather public that I think we should take the opportunity to grow beyond Europe and the US. So, anyone running something on Africa, South America, Asia?

Mind you that a “conference” doesn’t need to be a 300-people, fully-produced nerdfest. A 50 person, small nerdfest at a University is quite enough. The air to transport the chatter is the same everywhere.

We shouldn’t focus that whole thing on RustConf. All other conferences last year had stuff to bring to the table that RustConf couldn’t.


#14

I’m not sure what this would take, but could it be possible to have the RustConf in both US and another country in a similar timezone like Brazil or Canada and then stream presenters to both; so they seem like one conference (minus some time delay). Just putting that out there as an idea. It is sad that we have to think about this, however, I’m wondering if we could turn this around and do something to make this an even better event, by spreading out and getting more presenters/attendees by having a “sister” conference (for lack of a better description) in a different location.


#15

Hi from Australia. I would love to attend a Rust conference. All the options at the moment are a very long, very expensive journey for me. Anything closer would be most welcome. Despite the cost and distance I was considering making the trip to RustConf in the US. However given current events I not so keen to travel to the US anymore, despite not likely to be affected by the bans in place.