When I received notice that my paper had been accepted for this year’s ASA conference in New York, it included the following statement, “As a Program Participant you must pre-register by May 15, 2013 to avoid your paper being removed from the program.” Today, the ASA sent an e-mail to members informing them that “Online access to the member portal, meeting registration, the ASA online bookstore, the TRAILS online database of teaching resources, and the ASA Job Bank will be unavailable from May 6 until approximately May 15” (bold and italics in original!). Visiting the ASA website reveals the same information via the notice above.
Thankfully, the ASA extended the preregistration deadline to May 30 although, since this is the ASA we’re dealing with, the odds that the website will not be functional on May 15 and the preregistration deadline will be further extended are good. Whether the website is back on the 15th or not, is there another professional organization that would schedule to shut down online access to meeting registration during its prime meeting registration time? I would guess that there is not.
For conspiracy theorists, there is also the fact that the ASA announced plans to shut down its website just days after the Canadian Prime Minister warned us all that “this is not a time to commit sociology.” Hmm… I guess that if the database upgrade fails the ASA can always blame Canada!