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The first time I ever spoke with the executive committee of Enterprise Connect’s parent company, to discuss our event’s strategic plans, we met on a video bridge connecting London, New York, San Francisco, and Oak Brook, Ill. I came into our suburban Chicago office at some ungodly hour of the morning so that I could do a test call with the video support person in London, and finally felt reasonably confident that I could get myself onto their screens at just the right moment so as not to waste anyone’s time. My concern was legitimate, because our conference room has an antiquated video system and monitor that require a two-fisted-remote operation -- one for the TV, one for the codec. For the rest of the pre-work morning hours, I practiced until I was like Rooster Cogburn in the climactic gunfight scene in “True Grit,” rhythmically firing from each hand in turn.

(Side note: The Coen Brothers’ 2010 version of “True Grit” is the greatest movie ever made, and the incredible dialogue is mostly straight from the book, where the people talk like Coen Brothers characters even though Charles Portis wrote the novel more than 40 years before the Coens made the movie. If you skip the old John Wayne movie version, you won’t have missed anything, IMHO.)

So anyway… I struggled through the big video meeting, and when we finished, and I’d fired off the remotes, I got on the phone with my boss to see how I did. We were exchanging innocuous commentary, mostly me critiquing my performance and expressing frustration over things I should have said or information I felt I should have had at my fingertips. It was then that I saw an email pop up on my computer screen from one of the executive committee members with the subject line: “Your video is still on.”

Everyone was very kind about it and I still have my job, but it’s obviously an experience I’m not eager to repeat. So for me, advances in videoconferencing ease of use are, shall we say, personal.

These advances, along with all the other technical improvements, as well as the evolution in work styles that’s driving demand for better video systems -- all have been increasingly important topics at Enterprise Connect over the past few years. So we’ve decided it’s time to survey our end-user audience about what’s going on with video and A/V within their enterprises. We’d love to get your perspective on huddle rooms, desktop video, mobile, moving video to the cloud, and all the related topics that enterprises face as they roll out the next generation of video to their users.

If you’re an end user with video -- in whatever state of evolution -- we’d love to get your input. You can find the survey here; it’ll take just a couple of minutes to fill out, and we’ll share the results on No Jitter when it’s completed.

Oh, and next time you’re about to enter into a procurement with your vendor, I recommend this Primer on Negotiations, from the greatest movie ever made.

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