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PASS Dissolving

From the PASS board:

We are saddened to tell you that, due to the impact of COVID-19, PASS is ceasing all regular operations, effective January 15, 2021. 

Also check out their final meeting minutes (PDF):

Tim presented a recap of the non-reconciled PASS Virtual 2020 Summit numbers, showing that only $1,973,031 was brought in falling short by $1,642,39 of the budgeted Summit revenue of $3,615,427. He went on to show that with the Summit shortfall and no prospect of funding support from Microsoft, that even if all other revenue was achieved, it puts PASS is a deficit of potentially $3.22M. the non reconciled breakdown of registration and sales and the potential deficit of $3.22M if the remaining budgeted revenue is met.

H/T Brent Ozar for the minutes.

I’m sure I’ll have more to say in other venues, but my brief thoughts are as follows:

  • PASS was an excellent institution, nearly unique among its kind by being community-driven rather than a community effort owned by a parent company.
  • Another example of such an institution that I’m familiar with was INETA. Emphasis on “was” there.
  • I appreciate everything that PASS has done. I think that they certainly fulfilled their mission and although I hate to see them go, I am grateful that they were there.
  • .NET user groups certainly didn’t die with the passing of INETA, and SQL Server user groups won’t either. At the user group level, my expectation is that it’ll be status quo. This is an advantage of the decentralized user group model.
  • I hope that the SQL Saturday property will be spun off and saved. Yes, the community could make a new SQL Saturday, but my biggest concern is getting the sponsors sorted out. I think there’s some time to do this, as virtual events are quite inexpensive, so only a limited sponsor base is required. It’s the in-person events which have biggest monetary outlays.