Why I Won’t Be Speaking at Grace Hopper
Gayle Laakmann McDowell

In this conference category, I would consider you a ”super famous speaker”. I get where you're coming from and there is indeed a movement to ensure that women speakers get compensated.

I would usually consider whether it’s a non-profit event or whether the typical attendee would be in the marginalized category and unable to receive the content anywhere else.

That said, I’m stunned when a conference doesn’t comp the ticket (for the entire event) for their speakers. They do, after all, get to choose their speakers so they wouldn’t be expected to comp someone they didn’t think contributed value.

I can only imagine that they are counting their pennies to allow them to sponsor scholarship tickets to those who can’t afford to attend, although I believe for this conference that is limited to students and faculty. So if you can’t even afford to be a student or faculty, you are out of luck. :(

I’ve never been able to speak at or attend GHC.

So, if the money is not that important, and one is probably benefitting from non-monetary ways (this is GHC after all), does one make an exception for the benefit of the attendees? I suppose if you believe the event is worthy (and I do), perhaps I would consider my speaking there as a donation. No event ticket is still pretty surprising…

I’m glad you brought this up. It’s a good conversation to have.

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