At the recently completed STOC and the previous FOCS, much of the discussion revolved around reforming the conferences. You read the discussion and comments on Windows on Theory and I've also been cc'd on several very long email threads.
STOC, as the flagship conference of ACM SIGACT, should be the focal point of the community, the place where researchers circle their calendars and make sure they attend the event. You see that at SOSP for the systems community or SIGCOMM for networking. But not STOC, smaller than it was thirty years ago when the theory community had a fraction of the people we have today.
Instead STOC has become a conference for its authors, to give researchers a prestigious line in their CVs. While authors get to present their papers, STOC is no longer a primary place for dissemination, better served by arXiv and ECCC.
The problem is conference overload. We have two top theory conferences a year, STOC and FOCS, not to mention SODA, Computational Complexity and so many others. Conferences are expensive in both time and money and we can't afford to attend too many. People often choose more specialized conferences and workshops where they can focus on talking to people in their specialized research areas.
SOSP on the other hand meets only once every two years, accepts only thirty papers and gets 600 attendees.
The only true solution would merge and/or eliminate conferences. We don't need two major theory conferences a year. But that's not politically feasible.
So the talk is of a Theory Festival centered around STOC in 2017, to make an event that all theorists would want to attend. What that theory festival should or should not do is the topic of all the discussion. I'm not going to talk about the various proposals but I encourage strong experimentation to get us out of this bad equilibrium. Otherwise we end up with status quo and status quo does not bring our community together.