Does the New State Department Terrorism Warning Hurt the Meetings Industry?

OK – I am all for being warned of potential terrorist attacks, I really want to know… BUT.

The new State Department warning regarding a possible terror threat in Europe may be doing more harm that good because it is vague and offers nothing more than “Yep, there could be a terror attack somewhere sometime. Be on the lookout”.

That my friends, is not a legitimate warning, it is rather stupid.

This statement is much like saying “there is a drunk driver on I-80″….. OK, thanks for the warning but I-80 runs from New York to California and is the drunk driver on the road now, were they on the road an hour ago and what kind of car are we looking for because I-80 carries millions of cars through dozens of cities including Chicago, Cleveland, Toledo, Reno, Sacramento, and Oakland.

Just what are they trying to say? Be vigilant? Americans and most World Citizens have learned vigilance and we have been vigilant ever since September 11th.

I was actually vigilant before that date, I guess because I have lived in the third largest city in the U.S. for so many years. I always have my ear to the ground watching for trouble.

Will this latest terror warning have an unexpected consequence for the meetings and events industry? Will meeting and event planners avoid Europe because there might be, someday, sometime, somewhere, a threat that someone may actually do something unspecified to someone?

Who knows, but what I do know is that warnings like this can have one unintended consequence if they are overused, people will start to tune them out and then when the time comes for a real warning, those calls for caution will go unanswered.

Keith Johnston

Keith Johnston

Keith is the Managing Partner of i3 Events but is most widely known as the outspoken publisher of the event industry blog PlannerWire. In addition to co-hosting the Bullet List and Event Tech Pull Up Podcasts, he has been featured in Plan Your Meetings, Associations Now, Convene, Event Solutions, and has appeared on the cover of Midwest Meetings Magazine.

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