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E3 2015 will be open to (some of) the public

ESA allowing exhibitors to invite 5,000 of their most enthusiastic fans to trade show

E3 2015 has always been a trade show closed to the public, but that's going to change a little this year. According to Polygon, organizers at the Entertainment Software Association are going to admit between 4,000 and 5,000 invited guests into the show this year.

"This year, for the first time, there will be prosumers in the halls," ESA senior vice president of consumer and industry affairs Rich Taylor told the site, explaining that each of the trade group's 31 member companies will be allotted a number of extra passes based on the size of the booths they have reserved for the show.

Since adopting its current incarnation, E3 has grown from 41,000 attendees in 2009 to about 49,000 last year. The standard attendance is expected to be the same, with the "prosumer" invitees making this year's event about 10 percent larger.

"There was a desire by a number of exhibitors and board members to connect with people directly," Taylor said. "In this age of vast social media, having some of those voices in the hall to report their reaction and enthusiasm is seen as a big plus."

When it came to the idea of opening E3 up to the public in a wider way, Taylor said the ESA board of directors would evaluate how this year's show goes before making any sort of decision on further changes.

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Latest comments (3)

Richard Browne Partner & Head of Interactive, Many Rivers Productions2 years ago
Last year was inflated by the badge check, previous years multiple people would use individual passes, Last years E3 was definitely the quietest I've ever seen. I guess this is trying to stave off the death of e3 that's impending.
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Greg Wilcox Creator, Destroy All Fanboys! 2 years ago
Hmmmm. Does "prosumer" mean well-off guy/gal fan gamers who spends a lot on collectors editions and such, has a video channel and perhaps monetizes that content through being a "strategic partner" of some sort? That's not me. I play games to enjoy what developers work hard on and try to write about it. I'm just old fashioned old is all... :D
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Jeremy Meyer VIP Services Host 2 years ago
E3 was almost dead last year in attendance and booths. Normally every inch of the convention center has been filled. I actually believe that E3 has always been kind of open to the public.

People giving badges to none industry people because they only are doing 1-2 days and don't need it for day three.

Executives from bigger companies giving badges to the company executives kids or grandkids.

People that has just snuck in from one entrance or another. No way a professional should wait in line for 40min for an inflatable controller or bag or whatever swag it may be companies are handing out to the professionals walking the show floor.

Expand the show from three days to five days.
Mon-Wed is trade days Thursday and Friday for $200 a ticket come on in and have fun, or switch and make Mon and Tuesday open while the pro's are doing media conferences the public can enjoy the show.
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