The much needed overhaul of the International Association of Convention and Visitor Bureaus' database of 20,000-plus meetings and conventions was completed earlier this year, and the new CINET98 offers improvements not only for CVBs that subscribe to it, but for meeting organizers as well. The CINET database is now accessible via the Internet instead of a dial-up private network, giving subscribers speedier access, "live information," and more information per screen, according to CINET coordinator, Silvia Whoolery. The database has been increased to include headquarter and regional information on organizations, and IACVB has devoted more staff to CINET to implement quality control measures that it hopes will make the database more accurate. For instance, planners will be called to verify information on their organization and meeting history. Their input on room pickup will be listed along with the pickup that the local CVB reports, so if there is any discrepancy (which often occurs), it will at least be shown on the meeting file.
Moreover, CINET is now offering a free Request for Proposal service to meeting organizers. Planners can send in their RFPs via fax, mail, or phone call, and CINET will route them to the respective cities, including any located outside of the U.S. If planners want to request a copy of their meeting profile as it appears in the CINET98 database, they can go to the CINET Web page at iacvb.ltsi.net, or call the IACVB office at (202) 296-7888 to speak with a CINET representative.