I find it continuously amusing how poorly kept “secrets” are in the oil and gas industry. Let’s examine a recent case in point. At a technical conference last fall, an oil company made an announcement during a talk that it would be undertaking a “ground-breaking” seismic survey. Requests to this oil company for more information were met with polite refusals. So I turned to Plan B. Part 1 of Plan B was to determine the contractor shooting the survey. This was done in about 5 minutes via an e-mail to a close friend who “knows these things.” Since I also know the president of the company shooting the survey, part 2 was my e-mail was to him. Would he be interested in helping me put together an article about the survey? Why, certainly, but only with the permission of the oil company. Having already established that said oil company would not be willing to release any information until after the survey was shot, I decided to keep my mouth shut, find another article for our March issue, and wait for developments. So imagine my surprise when the survey in question was referred to, repeatedly, in multiple scenarios. Firstly, at the annual meeting of the International Association of Geophysical Contractors, the contractor who will be shooting the survey mentioned the scope – 79,000 multicomponent channels, which will need to come from multiple vendors since no one vendor has that many systems ready to deploy. Two weeks later, at the joint Geophysical Society of Houston/Society of Exploration Geophysicists Spring Symposium, the survey was mentioned at least three times during the Wednesday session alone, once by the vendor supplying much of the kit. While I’m not the best judge of audience reaction, I can’t say that there were gasps of amazement from the assemblage of geophysicists present, meaning that this was probably not news to the vast majority. So far I’ve given away no information that would indicate the oil company, the service company, or the vendor involved in this huge survey. Nor did any of the aforementioned speakers. I do find it amusing that they even backed off from mentioning the location, although anyone familiar with “basins in Northwest Colorado” can probably make a best guess as to the basin in question. So my question is this – why are we tiptoeing around this? Either you don’t know what I’m talking about, in which case I’ve given you very little useful information, or you know exactly what I’m talking about, which I guess you probably shouldn’t. But since you already do … well, what, exactly, is the secret?