Nobody would call hiring burners to work in the SF office during the event as selling out. Where do you get the 2000 request number from? I can believe only 2000 offers, but not requests. Let's say 450 people get screwed by STEP's policy (0.75% of the population) due to illness, family crisis, job conflicts, transportation issues, financial crisis, serious personal/relationship problems, whatever. That's $175,500 that the LLC gets to pocket, easy motivation for what they did.
The only way I can believe there was a very low number of STEP requests is that people are much smarter than I would guess, and they thought they would be totally screwed if they suddenly couldn't attend at the last moment... and balked.
Pink, there are people in the BMan SF office dealing with stuff, but obviously not anything related to STEP.