What a bummer.
ETel was one of the few events where those interested in the bleeding edge of communications could easily meet and mix. It was a place where you could see an Asterisk hacker sit down with an Orange or BT exec, and have a meaningful conversation. It wasn't just for telephony geeks either. Last year's mashup showcase was a phenomenal blend of the web and the phone network — where Web 2.0 met telephony.
A bunch of folks are trying to organize an alternative. If you'd like to participate, check out the EComm group on Facebook.