Holy cow, those TechReady attendees really love their tchotchkes

Raymond Chen

I was at the Ask the Experts event last night at TechReady11, and if I didn’t know better, I would have thought the purpose of Ask the Experts was for attendees to wander the room collecting the coolest swag they could get their hands on as quickly as possible. My table was equipped with about two dozen Windows 7 frisbees, and the moment they came out of the box, they disappeared into the hands of passers-by, most of whom didn’t even bother reading the sign on the table much less make eye contact with me. The table next to mine started with a mountain of mugs, but it wasn’t long before it was reduced to a molehill. To try to convince people at least to make eye contact with me, I hid the remaining frisbees under the table, handing them only to people who actually stopped to ask a question, or at least tell an interesting story. After the frisbees were gone, the swag fairies dropped a few dozen battery-powered light stick thingies. They didn’t disappear as quickly, perhaps because the initial surge of swag-hunters had subsided.

I was kind of surprised at how aggressively people went after the swag. This is, after all, a Microsoft internal event. You’d think these people would be jaded by now, having been surrounded by Microsoft-branded doodads for years.


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