Getting to Mobile World Congress 2013
So about six weeks ago I had a stupid idea, "why not go to MWC in Barcelona?" checked flights, cheap, checked accommodation , reasonable, check tickets FFS !!!!!!!!! Needed a solution, trade shows are not designed or intended for private individuals to go wondering around, they are very expensive to set up and generate Millions for the industry, they are a showroom window for product launches and places for the real professionals to network, exchange ideas and do deals. But they also have a lot of bloggers to report on the vent and publicise it on the web , yes ? Anyway after moaning about the cost of entry to the event on Twitter @DhruvBhutani suggested I apply for a press pass, claiming that I was a blogger and using this site as evidence ( it didn't work, lol) after filling in the application I was rejected, so my opinion of my efforts are obviously shared by GSMA.
Not to be downhearted, I booked flights and an apartment anyway, worse case scenario I could have a week in Spain and I was pretty sure I could meet up with a few of my 'virtual' friends socially so what the hell. Now I've mentioned before, the main reason for my web presence is due to my involvement on Nokia forums (which for various reasons I have let slip the last few months, but that is another story) and also due to the people I've met due to our common interest on Twitter. I really didn't want to resort to asking Nokia for more help as they have been more than generous to me in the past and it seems a little churlish to take advantage, however my desperation to attend the event and the fact if you don't ask you don't get, I sent a few direct messages to Nokia sites/people I know on Twitter and Facebook in the hope I might get a bit of help, response, nothing . I emailed a couple of folk I'd dealt with in the past and again nothing, obviously demand was huge and availability of space and funds limited. I even resorted to sending an email to Stephen Elop CEO of Nokia, I guessed his email and hoped and unbelievably, about a week or so later, I actually got a response !! Not from Mr Elop but from a great guy I met at Nokia World 2011, Alf Noto, he mailed me to say he'd seen the mail and would see what he could do to get me a pass for the event, to say I was excited is an understatement. In the period between my begging to Nokia and actually getting a response I had also put feelers out on Twitter and asked for help/advice from people I knew quite well and also people I hardly know at all. So a massive thanks to @joaoluisc who offered to try and get me a pass via sites he's involved with, @rafeblandford who runs all the All About sites and responded to a mail I sent him saying if I was really stuck he may be able to get me a pass as a freelance under the All About sites as he is Travelling to Spain with the 361 Degrees guys, and finally a mention for @SteveLitchfield who basically made a similar offer to Rafe to try and get me in as a representative of his site and shows. I am truly honoured to have such kind , considerate and helpful friends on the www.
So I was finally contacted by a member of staff at Nokia House for my details to register at MWC, a lady named Marika, who was really helpful and both processed all my paperwork and kept me informed of progress and then confirmed I was in , yayy, I was overjoyed !! However there was to be one more hiccup, if you can remember that I was rejected for a press pass ? Well although I had confirmation from Marika that everything was organised, I hadn't received anything from GSMA with regard to paperwork, passes etc, I emailed Marika to see if there was an issue and it turned out my main email was locked in the system from my failed press application and so another mail address was needed. So about six hours after sending my Gmail address I received my log in and passwords for the event and all systems are now go.
I am as I write this , waiting to be picked up to go to the Airport by @Psychomania666 who is on the same Barcelona flight from Leeds/Bradford Airport as I am, and I'm looking forward to the experience of a lifetime, gonna love the tech, gonna meet the people and gonna Tweet like a good'un.It may have been a crazy idea, and it may be the last big event I attend, but I'm going to Mobile World Congress 2013.
Thanks for reading, thanks to everyone who has helped me and hope I can see some stuff that may interest folk enough to want to come back here over the next few weeks.