Community organiser at EA Singapore and Communications officer at Pandemic Prevention Network.
My favourite thing about using the word retreat (that also comes with the downside of point 2) is a sense of intentional community building that other terms like workshop and summit don't capture. On top of this, it seems pretty clear that EAs relate to and run retreats quite differently from the average person. My sense is that we might run into similar issues with any other term we pick, e.g. parties at a 'workshop' or intense work rooms at a 'team-building event'.
It might be worth coining a new term similar to how we have made EAG/x a common word instead of relying solely on the word 'conference'. I don't have any meaningful creative inputs on this yet, but the low bar would probably be something along the lines of EA___.
Adding onto this, the Virtual Programs (Introductory) currently has 3 weeks dedicated to Longtermism, Existential Risks and Emerging Technologies whereas there are little to no compulsory content on poverty, global health or climate change. (except Pandemics) Many of my participants have voiced out on this. If facilitators are not able to give a good answer, it can be easy for newcomers to have a skewed perspective that EA is just longtermism and x-risk.