Calendar question — UPDATE

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We’d like to pick the brains of our loyal Beat readers. As messy as that sounds, it’s not that dire. Our normal procedure for posting “events listings” here at The Beat is to do it the day of (usually in the morning.) That works for The Beat because our usual planning is along the lines of “Oh rats, that’s TONIGHT? I gotta comb my hair!” but others prefer a more structured approach.

We’re revamping our calendar policies a little, so we were wondering, what is more useful:

— Listing events when they are announced, sometimes long in advance.

— Listing events a day or so before.

— Continuing our last minute preparations.

There is no one single answer to this, obviously, so we’re open to the greatest good for the greatest number of people, etc etc etc.

Thanks!

UPDATE: Thanks for all the feedback, peeps. And no we’re not goin gto create a clickable calander in the sidebar because…well we’re not an events site. (We do recommend Egon’s excellent listings for indie comics type events.) WE have always just listed interesting events that catch our fanyc, not every signing and tour. We just want the events we DO list to be more useful for the people who read the site. And we know from our extensive market research (i.e. shooting the breeze) that people do patronize events we list.

Comments

  1. Heidi, does this mean that you’re thinking of having a separate calendar site with a list of events in addition to the announcements?

  2. My vote is for #2. Internet/blog time is forever, so you don’t want to give notice really far ahead of an actual event. But many people like to plan what they’ll be doing a day or so in advance.

  3. The Beat says:

    Franky, no, that would be way too much work for our feeble resources. However, I do want to break away from the “New York centric” focus that we have here.

  4. Is it possible to do a weekly post of upcoming events, sorted by “This Week”, “This Month” and “Coming Soon” and simply have them migrate from bottom to top as events get closer?

    And yes, we readers want it all for free.

  5. Chris Rice says:

    when they are announced, long in advance. Since I am still in the relative wilds of NJ, I need a couple of days to plan a getaway to NYC via NJT. I read you semi-obsessively (boy, did that sound icky), so I read it when it posts up, but more lead time is always better.

  6. Primate says:

    I vote for event announcements far in advance. I’m one of those long-term planning types.

  7. Maybe there’s a different WordPress theme you could use, something with 3 colums that you could add that calendar events column into…? You can VERY easily swap into a 3-columned WP theme with minimal rejiggery. There’s lots of themes/etc at http://wp-plugins.net/

  8. List ‘em when they’re announced, reminders they day before?

  9. Time is nonlinear.

  10. Chris Brown says:

    I’d like to see them at least a day before. I check this site just about everyday, but there have still been many a time I missed some cool event because I didn’t find out about it until too late.

  11. Jonathan says:

    I say announce them when they’re announced and then the first of the month you remind us all of the things that you know are upcoming for the month in question. Is that potential double-booking too much? Nah! Anyway, that’s my vote. Peace.

  12. Michael Climek says:

    The first two.

    Announce long in advance.

    Remind a week before, and a day before.

    I was totally clueless about the Garth Ennis & David Lloyd thing, and I’m still upset about it.

  13. How about Upcoming.org?

  14. Perhaps it’s just that I’m presently in no position to make use of such announcements, but I think we ought to remember Heidi is not necessarily a clearinghouse of various institutions’ announcements, and we should be grateful to her for those she does choose to publicize, whatever the timetable. Should she wish to change THE BEAT’s focus to serve in that capacity, then there might be cause for complaint, but as it is, she’s already above and beyond the call of service. If someone feels they’re missing out on scheduled events at Hanley’s or MoCCA or Meltdown or wherever, most of said establishments have their own mailing listservs and/or websites through which you can often have lead times of months; same goes for favorite creative types, too. All these resources considered, if you miss out, you only have yourself to blame.

  15. I agree with Mike Platt and with Tag. I think a collection of interesting events, signings and appearances once is week would be great and a service to the readers. I would not want to interrupt the flavor of the page with a flood of event announcements. I like how the news and events are interspersed with more personal material. That is naturally going to focus more on the East Coast, because that’s where the pirate captain is at.

  16. CRIMINY! I meant John Platt.

  17. Daniel says:

    I’d like a monthly calendar on the side with clickable days that we can click on and it shows us what’s happening on those days.

    And seven day list of whats happening would be nice as well. Not weekly, but seven days, knocking off the past day and adding on the new seventh.

  18. When events that I can attend are announced, I’ll actually add them to my personal calendar! Maybe a quick note about the announcement (and link externally) when it is made, and then a bit more hype shortly prior to the event. Day before/day of tends to be of no use to folks with work/family/extracurricular obligations (read: me).

  19. You could always use iCal – create a New Calendar for Beat events, publish that calendar to your .mac account, or to Box.net (free 1 GB server) and then just add a link to your blog.

    Just make sure you don’t publish your personal Calendar.

    This way people can make both long term plans, or look up what’s happening that day and check things out.

    It may take a few minutes to add things each day, but the publishing and link are simple and painless.

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