Booth Babe B.S.

When will vendors get it – hired booth babes are just not cool at tech conferences.  Don’t get me wrong – I have no problem with attractive females in tech, but damn it, have some brains and be able to talk about the technology you are representing.  I think next year I may submit fake talent to the Craigslist ads and modeling agencies seeking ‘models’ for VMworld booths – flood em with false positives and maybe we can kill off the practice…..  If we vNerds start showing respect to our female counterparts we might actually attract more women to our trade and end the sausage fest that is IT.

But until then, VMware is taking some steps this year to highlight women in technology here at VMworld 2012.  First, VMware is hosting Women of Purpose for the third year.  This is a great program, with the following goals:

This interactive community of IT professionals highlights successful women in IT from organizations globally; they include many VMware customers and partners as well as VMware employees. The community offers a forum for women to network, mentor, connect and get involved at VMware programs and events. Read More About VMware Women of Purpose

If you too are passionate about supporting, motivating, mentoring and elevating women in IT, we invite you to join us at this important and informative networking event during VMworld 2012.

Learn more about Women of Purpose and register for the event here:

Secondly, on Wednesday from 10am – noon, all 42 of the VMware VMworld booths will be staffed by women from VMware.  This will be a great chance to contrast the booth babes brought in by some vendors.  Don’t dare treat these women as booth babes, though – they’re some of the best brains around!

Enough of the booth babes – bring on the booth brains!


  1. What’s wrong with attractive models portraying one’s products? It’s advertising, meant to draw you in.

    If someone wants to know about the product specs, read online. If they want to know the ground truth, trial the product in a pilot.

    But sometimes after a long, hard slog through a tech conference surrounded by smart, know-it-all, geekier-than-thou IT types, it’s downright refreshing to be in the company of a “babe.” (Your mileage may vary. )

    Heck, it’s advertising, after all. Keep the babes!

  2. After seeing a thousand fat guys walking around, the Booth Babes are a sight for sore eyes.

    Keep them….

  3. This may come as a shock, but not all VMworld attendees have penises. It’s highly insulting to women to have beautiful, but brainless, bimbos in a booth to scan badges, then pass customers off to the men — the “real” people who know the technology.

    Is is really any wonder that there aren’t more women at VMworld? In all my years in IT, I have never seen such a high ratio of men to women. It’s been an average of a 10:1 ratio over the past ten years. It’s at least 60:1 here. Maybe if the conference were more female-friendly, it wouldn’t be just “a thousand fat guys”.

  4. @Pam,
    1. There’s no shock that it’s not 100% men.
    2. You control whether you’re insulted or not.
    3. There aren’t more women at VMworld for the same reason there aren’t more men working as Elementary and middle school teachers.
    4. 10-1? Where?
    5. How is the conference female non-friendly? If anything, it’s non-friendly to men….especially for how long we wait for restrooms…not complaining, just saying.

    Thanks for your non-sequiturs, but your rant doesn’t change one thing I’ve said.

  5. You monster says:

    @ Pam: You are the only one insulting here. Why because a woman is beautiful have to be brainless or “less real”? I work in a highly specialized field and our last intern is this gorgeous redhead that actually have been working as booth babe for some time already for paying the bills and fun.

  6. This topic is always a touchy one and also a very interesting one. Every year, more and more females enter the tech industry (as well as other industries). We are seeing more and more women in executive positions and at the same time, have noticed less “booth babes” not the trade show floor.

    I run a trade show staffing agency that supplies most of the talent at the large tech conferences – VMworld, CES, Dreamforce, Oracle OpenWorld, etc. We have been around for 8 years and every year there is a noticeable difference in what exhibitors are looking for. I would say, close to ZERO are looking for “booth babes”. Most are even gender neutral in the type of staff they are looking for.

    The days of the “booth babe” at respectable and information heavy events are over. It will be interesting to see what pans out at VMworld this year but so far we have gotten just as many requests for male brand ambassadors and booth assistants as female ones and zero have requested any kind of attire that would appear to be “booth babe” type clothing.

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