I left the IFFS wishing I could stay and do more. I have already made plans to attend in 2009 and would recommend the experience to any film festival worker; It is a terrific opportunity to talk about nuts and bolts away from the pressure of film markets and festival screening schedules.
This is exactly the way I feel about IFFS in general. Though I and many others have thoughts regarding the panels and general format of the annual conference, this year's event proved invaluable as a chance to touch base with old friends, forge new contacts, and put faces to the personalities I only meet by phone or e-mail. I hope everyone else finds it as useful, and that they'll keep coming back even as the conference struggles towards the ultimate goal of making all of its component events relevant to a wildly diverse set of attendees.
For the rest of Tom's thoughts click here. I have more detailed notes (including the notes on my own panel about new media and marketing) that I'll be posting later this week and early next.