Are We Reaching Security Conference Overload?

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I saw a post from my friend Matt Neely on Twitter about how CarolinaCon and BSidesROC are on the same weekend this year. I’ve also had conversations with others earlier this week about DerbyCon (September 28-30) and GrrCon (September 27-28) being back to back as well. This is a trend that seems to be increasing every year based on the large pool of conferences out there. Not only do we have more security and hacking conferences then ever before but now there is more overlap with each other. My thought is that these choices can make it harder for researchers to present new and relevant content and also tough to decide which conferences to attend from a attendee perspective. DerbyCon was an excellent conference but I’ve also heard great things about GrrCon as well. Which conference would a speaker or attendee choose? They are also both located in the central part of the country and near large cities which makes it even more difficult for local folks to choose.

On the other hand because of Security BSides and other smaller conferences over the years more unknown speakers are getting out there. We’re also seeing more great talks and discussions then ever before because of these smaller conferences. This is a good thing for our industry. Many good talks still get rejected from the big conferences like Black Hat and this is where conferences like Security BSides really shine. However, we potentially run the risk of seeing the same speakers, same content and as Matt said we appear to have an “echo chamber problem” at all of these conferences including the big ones. Is anyone else seeing this trend? Does the overlap of multiple security conferences matter to you? Like any trend in technology are we about to bust the “Security Conference Bubble”? I often wonder what the security conference world will look like in a few years if this trend continues.

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2 Comments

  1. Mark says:

    Go check Thomas’s keynote from infiltrate 2012. In it he discusses this exact problem.

  2. Tom says:

    Someone on Twitter posted this link to all the security conferences by month…incredible how many there are:

    https://secore.info/conferences

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