SXSW programming deserves a second look, survey shows

Coldplay performs at the iTunes Festival during the SXSW Music Festival on Tuesday, March 11, 2014, in Austin, Texas. (Photo by Jack Plunkett/Invision/AP)

AUSTIN (KXAN) – More than half the people who responded to an online survey delving into the ever-expanding South by Southwest festival said the event’s programming needs a second look.

The City of Austin conducted the survey to see how the event is affecting those who attend the festival, and the city as a whole. They released their findings on Wednesday.

The survey came about in the wake of the deadly crash on Red River Street. Austin’s permitting office put the survey together to gauge views on the growing festival as they look to make changes next year.

When asked about the primary reason for attending SXSW, 45 percent said it was for the free food, alcohol and swag. Forty-four percent said it was for the events or industry discovery.

Half of 850 people who took the survey also said RSVP services had a negative impact on their experience, and 65 percent said access to events should be provided based on the venue’s capacity.

People on hand at the city’s meeting Wednesday were also able to give ideas to fix potential problems.

“Couple of great recommendations, one being, an accreditation process for local event promoters to make sure events are done the right way,” said Jimmy Stewart with

The city is still compiling it’s list of final recommendations to improve issues brought up in the survey. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Users who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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