Image by Andreas Mortonus

Rumors of my death have been greatly exaggerated.
Mark Twain

“This technology could change the world of events forever.” Does that sound familiar? What would you guess it pertained to? If you were reading a blog this month, chances are you saw a headline with a similar sentiment. Reading a magazine five years ago? Same. Reading a newspaper thirty years ago? Ditto. Events have been pronounced dead for decades. And yet, they live on. Why? Nothing beats in-person, human connection. Nothing. For your entertainment today, a few of history’s developments that were absolutely, positively, sure to end events once and for all.

1. The Internet

Think VR has event planners shaking in their boots? Imagine the day when the internet was first announced. Before the internet, there was no such thing as connection between multiple locales. Now, an email newsletter could reach professionals around the world in a matter of seconds. Surely, there would be no reason to fly in from around the country to meet each other, right?!

old computer connected to a bulletin board system (BBS)

2. Chat Rooms

Well if the internet didn’t’ kill the professional networking conference, it was only a matter of time before Yahoo and AOL created a technology that would certainly do them in. Their name? Chat rooms. Now, like-minded pros could hop into a digital room to share insights and make connections. In other words, the Internet’s networking break. There go professional seminars. But wait…

AOL chat room listings

3. Skype

Oh, no. Just when we thought it couldn’t get any worse, a little company called Skype lets internet users see each other while talking. Anywhere in the world. For FREE. Here we go again. We’re doomed.


4. Facebook & LinkedIn

Then Mark Zuckerberg ups the ante with a social network. A place where people can get to know each other’s likes, interests, and histories before even speaking a word. This wouldn’t only match the icebreaking power of the in-person event, it would surpass it. After all, what could beat knowing everything about someone? Time is surely ticking.


5. Virtual Reality

The current affliction of the event-planning hypochondriac goes by just two letters: VR. It’s a deadly diagnosis that will soon have us numbering our days. Oh, please. We’ve been around the block a time or two. We’re not falling for it. Instead, we’re incorporating VR into our events to give guests an immersive experience they’ll never forget.

The HTC Vive, playing Google Tiltbrush, and the PlayStation VR, playing Rigs.

Time time, keep that sympathy card in the junk drawer. In-person events are some of the most resilient, disruption-proof categories out there. So say it with us: long live events!