Organizers cite need to give people time to adjust, travel difficulties
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Sun Microsystems' iPlanet Partner Conference and its iForce Partner Summit 2001, along with XML World, were canceled in the wake of the terrorist attacks on New York and Washington.
Officials for the events cited travel difficulties and a need to focus on home and family as reasons for the cancellations.
The iPlanet conference was scheduled for Sept. 16 and 17, and the iForce event for Sept. 17 to 19 in Orlando, Fla.
A Sun spokesperson said the event will be rescheduled, but the date and place have yet to be determined.
In an e-mail to event attendees, Gary Grimes, Sun's vice president for partner management and sales operations for the U.S., and Barbara Gordon, senior vice president of worldwide sales and operations for iPlanet, said the main reasons for the postponements were the interests of partners and employees as well as the difficulties of holding a first-class program given air travel difficulties.
iForce partners can submit out-of-pocket business costs associated with the postponement of the events for SunFund reimbursement, the e-mail said. Sun and iPlanet will arrange Portofino Bay and Hard Rock hotel cancellations.
In addition, XML World, originally scheduled for Sept. 17 to 20, will be postponed due to the difficulties related to air travel, as well as to give attendees time to adjust , said Rainer Wellige, general manager of the event, in a statement on the event's Web site.
The conference will be rescheduled, although the date has yet to be determined, an event spokesperson said.
In related news, training events scheduled for the next two weeks by ScanSource, a Greenville, S.C.-based value-added distributor of automatic data capture, point-of-sale and telephony products, are expected to proceed as scheduled.
Training sessions for solution providers on Avaya telephony products scheduled for Greenville on Sept. 19 and 20, as well as wireless product training events in Denver on the 24th and in Phoenix on the 26th, will be held, a ScanSource spokesperson said. The attendees are local, but company executives may cancel their flights if they are uncomfortable flying at this time, she said.
Jim Quasius, vice president of operations at Gateway Computer Associates, a St. Petersburg, Fla.-based Sun solution provider, said he was disappointed to learn of the iPlanet and iForce postponements.
"I had meetings taking place there," he said. "I also wanted to hear about the new stuff."
Even so, Quasius said he understands why Sun has postponed the events. "When you are at war, you have to change," he said.