For the past five months, The Industry Standard has been touting it’s free rooftop parties as something that not every Tom Dick and Harry can get into. You have to apply for an invitation, and the site clearly states, “By requesting an invitation … This does NOT mean you are invited to a specific party. You must receive an email invitation from John Battelle, Chairman and CEO of The Standard in order to attend a Rooftop party.”
So, naturally we were psyched to be selected to receive an invitation from John Battelle himself for the DC party this week. When we clicked through to RSVP, it sounded deliciously exclusive, stating “Your invitation is for you and one guest only, and is non-transferable. Please rsvp for yourself and your guest. If you do not rsvp for your guest on this page, your guest will only be admitted if he/she arrives with you. Please note that we will be checking our original invitation list at the door.”
That night we abandoned our jeans for something more suit-like and ventured forth … into an enormous crowd made up of everybody from millionaire dot-com CEOs to sales guys from teensy local Web design shops! If somebody was excluded, we’d like to know who. We also suspect the more snooty of the crowd may not show at the next DC Standard event (but we could be wrong.)
Never mind. The crowd represented an unusually broad cross section of the DC Internet crowd. From Stackig media directors to beltway bandit techies. Plus you couldn’t swing a dead cat without hitting a member of the press. Everybody was in a good mood (possibly because food and drinks were free, plentiful and exotic.) Networking was happening and interesting connections were made.
Best tchotchke? Well not the way-overused-by-others little metal box of extra-strong mints from the Washington Post. Banana Republic wins this time, for handing out grey, stretch t-shirts to everyone … without a logo! We were most impressed by the fact that the shirts were still individually encased in plastic so no pawing hands could sully them, and all sizes were available, even XS.
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