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Makes me wanna point and laugh

I'm hauling out the MacArthur icon for this because I'm putting on my ex-Chairman hat for this post.

CONvergence has finally dropped the hammer on the ghost/crasher problem and essentially turned the entire hotel into convention space. You can still go to the bar, the restaurant, and (I think) the bathrooms without getting badged, but the practice of going to room parties without buying a con membership is over. For that matter, bringing in non-members to set up/tear down parties is over as well, although CONvergence reasonably offered "volunteer" badges to such persons, provided they knew who those people were going to be by the 25th. Predictable whining and delicious tears ensued.

Look, if you're broke and can't go to the convention, I'm sorry, but the concom has no obligation to let you in so you can visit your friends from out of town. If your ootie friends can't be bothered to come up a day early, or stay a day late, so you can have some time with them outside the con, then that sounds like a problem between you and your friends which doesn't involve the concom. Likewise, are you telling me that the only time you can meet these people is during con? I don't buy it. There are 360 other days in the year. And you can't manage to meet up at any other time than the extended Independence Day weekend? Riiiiiight. For that matter, there are public spaces near the Sheraton - last time I looked, there was a Burger King, a Caribou Coffee, a DQ, and a Friday's, none of which are convention space and all of which will allow you to meet your friends for the price of a cup of coffee or soda.

Whether people like it or not, conventions are by, of, and for the bourgeoisie these days. If you can't afford it, that's really too bad. I don't go whining to Katsucon and Otakon and AnimeUSA that I'm a broke-ass unemployed student and they should let me in so I can hang with my handful of local friends who attend those cons. If I really want to go, I plan ahead and save my money. So should you, instead of making a laughingstock out of yourself.

Comments

( 25 comments — Leave a comment )
433
Jun. 30th, 2010 03:26 am (UTC)
I love you in a very platonic, manly way.
wombat_socho
Jun. 30th, 2010 03:34 am (UTC)
Awwwww.
#^__^#

Edited at 2010-06-30 03:35 am (UTC)
huladavid
Jun. 30th, 2010 03:57 am (UTC)
How does this compare to the MNSTF bust up of some years back? (I'm not saying there are/aren't any similarities, but I'd like to hear what you think. For some reason it feels like you've got better finger on the con's pulse than I do.)
qob
Jun. 30th, 2010 04:10 am (UTC)
I was there for the Minicon meltdown, this doesn't look like it at all. There are a couple issues that are troublesome, the room party volunteer thing and the "shut up and take it" attitude that some party throwers are getting from the concom. The other thing that rubs people wrong is that this was sprung on them rather quickly, just 2 months ago. I think this is much ado about little and will shake out just fine. I had my doubts but I think we're GTG
huladavid
Jun. 30th, 2010 01:13 pm (UTC)
That's good to hear.

I should clear up something - not that I think it makes a difference - but when I referred to the "...Minicon bust up..." I meant the one I was involved with back around Minicon 25/26, not the more recent on
wombat_socho
Jun. 30th, 2010 01:29 pm (UTC)
Ahhhhh. It was late enough at night that I didn't understand what you were getting at.

Still, don't think this is going to be a major issue that splits the convention staff - but what do I know, out here in the ass-end of the Northeast Corridor? More news/views as they develop, I guess.
tokenfanboy
Jun. 30th, 2010 04:58 pm (UTC)
I agree, there wasn't much of a heads up for getting room party volunteer lists ready. Making people have to schedule their room party shifts months ahead of con is difficult for the party planners.
wombat_socho
Jun. 30th, 2010 09:25 pm (UTC)
Even assembling a list of potential volunteers in advance isn't always easy. I remember one AI in particular where there was nobody available to staff the room party, and I basically got talked into it less than a week before the convention. CONvergence, not so much a problem after 2005, but still...I wouldn't want to be the person in charge of the room party trying to round up a list of people who are 1) going to CONvergence in the first place, 2) not already doing programming or volunteering for the con, and 3) willing to work on the AD room party. Or even just 3), in this case.
wombat_socho
Jun. 30th, 2010 04:29 am (UTC)
Seconding qob; some people are bent out of shape about it, some people are actively whining, and a lot of people are okay with it - there's a perception that the ghosts and crashers were mainly responsible for a lot of the problems last year. Guess we'll see.
revolutionaryjo
Jun. 30th, 2010 12:49 pm (UTC)
While I agree that the con has no obligation to ghosters who are there just to leech off the parties, I can't help but be a little saddened by this. The first year I attended CON it was unofficially. It was to help out the MN Fan Force with their room party. I hung out for a few hours, got a flavor for the con, really enjoyed it, and have not only pre-regged every year since, but I've convinced the majority of my friends that they want to attend too. Numerous of them by simply inviting them to attend the parties, after which they have registered themselves.

Not everyone's that honest though, and I dislike that the faults of some are making things tough on the rest of us. I've lost a valuable means of convincing people what an awesome con CONvergence is because of it.
wombat_socho
Jun. 30th, 2010 01:25 pm (UTC)
Not everyone's that honest though, and I dislike that the faults of some are making things tough on the rest of us. I've lost a valuable means of convincing people what an awesome con CONvergence is because of it.

Tragedy of the commons, yo.
I think it's inevitable that every time you draw a line of this sort, you're going to lose some of the people you would have liked to see at the convention. The cost of not drawing the line, though, apparently had reached the point where CONvergence felt that the line had to be drawn. Be interesting to see how it works out.
dejana
Jun. 30th, 2010 10:04 pm (UTC)
The past two years, I had to work Fri-Sun and it would've been a huge waste of money to buy a badge. I went on Thursday to visit the AD party and scope out the other parties, and the general awesomeness and atmosphere of the convention made me incredibly eager to attend the whole event ASAP. I doubt I'd be as fired up for this weekend if I hadn't had that little taste of CON first.
wombat_socho
Jul. 1st, 2010 05:15 am (UTC)
What, our word wasn't good enough? ;)
(Deleted comment)
wombat_socho
Jun. 30th, 2010 09:20 pm (UTC)
Unfortunately, the intersection of fandom and engineers is not as big as we might like, and this solution -which is obvious to you, me, the con staff, and a fair number of other folks- does not seem to have occurred to the poor & whiny among us. Either that, or it brings up the depressing (for them) realization that nobody really wants to see them badly enough to fork out money for a badge. Welp.
otherles
Jul. 2nd, 2010 12:26 am (UTC)
I basically stopped going to CONvergence because I was basically bored. That and being short on time and money.

Now I'm not so short on money and I could set aside some time but I still remember being bored.
wombat_socho
Jul. 2nd, 2010 01:21 pm (UTC)
This genuinely surprises me. Being the type of con it is, Convergence deliberately has a wide variety of programming and guests, and covers pretty much every frequency in the SF/F spectrum. Are you sure you're not thinking about Minicon?
otherles
Jul. 2nd, 2010 06:23 pm (UTC)
Oh, I was bored with Minicon lonnnnng before I was bored with CONvergence.

I actually think I will do Convergence this year. I've been told by one of the dispatchers at the taxi company I drive for that holiday weekends tend to be dead. So I'm probably doing the con this year.
wombat_socho
Jul. 2nd, 2010 08:09 pm (UTC)
There are much worse way to spend the July 4 weekend, that's for sure.
otherles
Jul. 2nd, 2010 08:38 pm (UTC)
The words "air conditioned comfort" keep coming to mind here.
wombat_socho
Jul. 3rd, 2010 03:35 am (UTC)
Yase...especially in the sweaty pit of Hell that is Minneapolis in July.
otherles
Jul. 3rd, 2010 07:09 am (UTC)
And for some reason I've just found out that I can now tolerate Diet Pepsi. (I'm a Coke Zero fiend.)
otherles
Jul. 3rd, 2010 07:12 am (UTC)
Oh... and I printed up the first three chapters of the novel I'm writing, The Path Of Life. [evil grin!]
wombat_socho
Jul. 3rd, 2010 03:56 pm (UTC)
Lucky you. That stuff eats my stomach. :(
windelina
Jul. 8th, 2010 03:58 pm (UTC)
Oh - and don't forget the handful of party runners who felt that since it was THEIR party, they could send out an email to ALL their friends to just "drop on by". Like to literally hundreds of their friends.

Oy.

The most reasonable complaint is the one that we gave very little notice, which is valid. We were hung up getting the lawyer to clarify. *shrug*
wombat_socho
Jul. 8th, 2010 04:28 pm (UTC)
Holy crap. I had NO idea that was happening, and am even more supportive of the effort now that I know. What the hell were those people thinking?

Yeah, the short notice got up a lot of peoples' noses. From what I hear, the substitute room party head left people with the impression that they'd been dropped in at the last minute to serve as a meat shield. Not having been there, I dunno, but one hears things. :/
( 25 comments — Leave a comment )

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