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Monday, September 18, 2006

Talking a new language

Liberal Democrats are often accused of talking a different language by our detractors, however we are in danger of confirming that by the badges worn around the Conference Centre by the many thousands of people who are here.

The problem is that each badge seeks to define our status and reason for being here by colour and by a mysterious code that very few can crack. It is a DaVinci code for modern politics and if you have acronym blindness as I do you don't stand a chance. Here is a full guide:

Party Members - yellow
Voting Representative - VOR
Non-Voting Member - NVO
Parliamentarians - PAR
Party Officers - POF

Non Members - Grey
Commercial Observers - OBS
Diplomats - DIP
International Guests - ING
Sister Party Members - SPG
Exhibitor Observers - EXO
Exhibitor - EXH
NGO/Charity Observers - NGO
Exhibition Technician - TEC

Media - Pink
Press or Media journalists - JOR
Camera crews/Photographers - PHO
Technicians - MTE

Staff - Orange
Headquarters staff - HQS
Parliamentary staff - PST
POLD staff - POL
State, Regional and Constituency Staff- SRC
Local Government staff - LGS

Conference Management - Green
Conference Organisers - ORG - Striped
Federal Conference Committee - FCC - Light Green
Stewards - STW - Dark Green

Fringe and Training - Purple
(Access only to the Hilton Brighton Metropole)
Training member - TRM
Trainers - TNR
Fringe Organiser - FRO
Fringe Guest only - FRG

What complicates things further is that some people are here in more than one capacity and thus are wearing a number of badges. This of course makes it easier to play Conference Happy Families. How many identical categorisations can you spot in any one group of people. If you get a set can you claim a prize? It is the stewards, who have to work with the system, that I feel sorry for.
You've missed at least one - PEX - Party Exhibitor - a white badge. Not sure what a Non-Party Exhibitor badge was though.
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