[UPDATE: VMware has clarified the changes to the agreement. Read the update here]
One of the great things about VMworld over the years was that it felt like a true industry-wide virtualization event and not a VMware-specific marketing conference. To that end, all vendors were able to demo and talk about their products.
That’s all changing for VMworld 2009 this September. VMware has modified the language of their sponsor and exhibitor agreement to specifically ban vendors from marketing or demonstrating products that compete with VMware’s offerings.
From the agreement:
Sponsors and exhibitors must market or demonstrate products on the exhibition floor and in the sessions which are complementary to VMware products and technologies. Complementary products and services are defined as products/services that do not overlap/substitute with VMware's products/capabilities, and help expand the reach and solution scope of VMware's capabilities solely as deemed by VMware.
What kind of crazy world is VMware living in? Do they think that by denying that competition exists, more people will be tricked into buying their stuff?
And what’s this mean for VMworld? No Microsoft. No Citrix. No Neocleus or Virtual Computer. No InstallFree or Xenocode. No Symantec or Quest. VMworld 2009 will just be a big rah rah hug-fest. That’s just what this industry needs. More vendor conferences where everything is rosy. I also heard that this is going to be the giveaway this year:
Seriously, this has got to be one of the dumbest moves they could make. Way to turn a great conference into another bullshit vendor event!