The Phoenix Forum, Day 2: Sun, Fun, Deals and the Vision Thing

TEMPE, Ariz.—As evidenced by the photo accompanying this story, Friday at The Phoenix Forum 2010 was an eye-opening experience of impressive proportions, a naked display of poolside delights, an orgy of lascivious exhibitionism. There was a lot of business done, too.

Again, the weather was sublime—never too hot to elicit complaints, but hot enough in the noontime sun to burn a bald pate or two. Perfect. The venue, as always, accommodated any momentary desire, whether personal or professional. The courtyard, especially on this day, was utilized in many ways by both attendees and the organizers, proving once again its utility as the central place where things are done at TPF; the beating heart, if you will, of this well-produced show.

Friday’s planned events included two Visionary Tracks featuring one-on-one discussions with influential figures in the industry – XBIZ president Alec Helmy and Hot House Entertainment president and founder Steven Scarborough. The two gentlemen were interviewed, respectively, by Johnny V and Tim Valenti. Helmy’s morning talk covered issues pertaining to the growth of his media company and his views on issues ranging from competition, extreme content, dot XXX and his current litigation with AVN. Scarborough presented his thoughts during an afternoon session, and spoke about his early days in the business, his many fights through the years on behalf of the gay community both in and outside the adult entertainment sphere.

Other educational fare included a standing-room-only turnout for the morning mobile seminar, set up as a round table affair in order to elicit more energetic discussion, and afternoon panels on Finding the Glue: How to Make Your Site Sticky and Face 2 Face: Tried & True vs New Emerging.

And of course there were a bevy of events designed to bring people together, including XXX Iron-Man Beer Pong and the Sponsor Meet Market. Oh, and a TPF-sponsored lunch was provided in the courtyard. The pool, as mentioned above, was perhaps the most visually exciting place to be Friday, as both males and females of every persuasion reminded show-goers that this is indeed a porn show, even if it does revolve around webmasters!

Friday also seemed to be the day for private invite-only dinners, as cavalcades of buses and courtesy vans lined the entrance to the Tempe Palms to shuttle the fortunate ones to their various venues. As usual, the late evening brought renewed energy and participation. The Smashbucks-sponsored Late Night Poker Lounge was packed to the gills, and the SpunkyCash and BuddyProfits Late Night Suites provided places where people could find a ready drink or snack until the wee hours.

Saturday promises more of the same, including the annual Lightspeed-sponsored Webmaster Dodgeball and Photo Shoot, an FSC Piracy Panel, more Beer Pong, late night poker and seminars, something intriguingly titled Extreme Poolside Networking (could get crazy) and, of course, the closing party.

A link to gallery of delicious photos from Frday is here.