Dublin 2019 Worldcon Bid Proposes Code of Conduct

Dublin_2019 COMPRecent Worldcons have had antiharassment policies but the Dublin in 2019 Worldcon bid believes they are the first to establish a Code of Conduct for a bid campaign.

“It’s very important to us that we make the Dublin in 2019 bid as safe and welcoming as Worldcon itself, should we win, and we feel this is a really important part of the bid from the start,” writes Esther MacCallum-Stewart. They are soliciting comments on the proposed text.

A draft of this Code of Conduct is open for consultation until early January. Everyone, whether they are aware of Worldcon, or entirely new to this historic convention, can comment on what we are doing. We would like help to make this the best bid ever, and that includes making it the safest. We would especially like feedback on our decision to include a newer concept: Code of Conduct contact team members. They are specifically chosen for this task, are not on the Committee or Bid Team, and they can help handle an issue raised in a sensitive manner.

Comments can be provided by e-mail to info@dublin2019.com or through Twitter or Facebook.

The Code of Conduct text follows the jump.

This post also displays their new logo (above) and banner art (below).

?????

Continue reading

Bids That Draw Help From Around The World

By Crystal Huff: For the past few weeks, New Zealand in 2020 has been soliciting volunteers to go to their website and fill out a form indicating interest in helping staff the convention if they should win. Without a significant amount of staff around the world, they were concerned their endeavor would be doomed to failure even if they got the votes in 2018.

I’m pleased to report that they’ve reached their goal in volunteer recruitment, at least for now. They’ve not released actual numbers yet, but I hope we’ll see them soon. Folks who want to volunteer for NZ but haven’t yet should still head over to NZ in 2020 Needs You and fill out the form toward the bottom, below their announcements.

I find this particularly fascinating because we are using recruitment methods more in line with modern technology and social media. NZ spread the news only on their Facebook and Twitter accounts, so far as I’m aware — as a NZ pre-supporter, at least, I didn’t get any email about it. I note that this effort for NZ has been wildly successful, and possibly even caused them to surpass a statistic on Helsinki in 2017 that I’m quite proud of: Team Helsinki has recruited staff and volunteers representing the bid in 25 countries. In Ye Olde Days, I am under the impression that Worldcon bids were only expected to represent themselves in the US, UK, Canada, and Australia. We’ve gone to conventions in Singapore, China, the Caribbean, and, well, all over the world! Worldcon bidding might now actually be a worldwide thing!

But then, you know most things come down to the Helsinki bid, for me. Not surprising that I’m only volunteering for NZ after we know how the vote for 2017 goes. If we get a Worldcon in Helsinki, it’ll impact several of my other potential projects.  ;)

New Zealand in 2020 Achieves Critical Mass

When the NZ in 2020 Worldcon bid announced it could only continue if 200 NZ and Aussie volunteers committed to work the con if they won, fans around the world held their collective breath.

Fortunately, the Kiwis got the response they wanted:

You know, it’s really amazing what fandom can do. Thanks to everyone’s passing on the message, poking friends, and generally being amazing, we had a brilliant response over the last two weeks.

With the commitments we had from New Zealand and Australia, we are very pleased to say that a WorldCon in New Zealand is definitely viable.

We will post numbers in the next day or two, but we just wanted to initially say thank you to everyone who passed the message on, and especially those who committed.

Although the December 6 message promised the numbers would be released “in the next day or two” they have not yet appeared. Whatever the total may be, it’s apparently big enough.

[Via Petrea Mitchell.]

Attending Worldcon in a Robot Body: Brad Templeton Tells All

Officer Sue Smith Interrogates Brad Templeton, attending Loncon 3 via telepresence.

Officer Sue Smith Interrogates Brad Templeton, attending Loncon 3 via telepresence. Photo by Francis Hamit.

Brad Templeton and Kathryn Myronuk attended Loncon 3 using a mobile telepresence bot called a “Beam.” Physically, they were in Idaho the whole weekend. (Francis Hamit photographed them for his Loncon 3 report.)

Brad has just written a detailed account of the experience:

It was particularly rewarding to be the first to use a device like the Beam at a convention like this. Science Fiction readers were of course largely fascinated by it and a thousand photos were posed for and many tweets were sent out. Almost everybody was extremely friendly. Too friendly perhaps, as it became very difficult to travel with purpose, as every few feet people wanted to stop me and chat. People were super helpful because of the novelty. Others who have done this have noted that they go to events and have no trouble getting famous and important people to talk to them, people who would not normally do so if you were there in the flesh. If you want to meet people this is a good way to do it.

Many were super helpful. Not just opening doors and pushing elevator buttons, but being my hands when I went into a charity casino, or setting a place for me to watch the awards ceremony. (Because the Beam is 5′ tall it must go where it will not block other people’s view.) They were not just willing to help but eager, in order to enjoy the novelty.

The operations manager for the convention even asked me to do a volunteer ops shift, answering people’s questions, which I did, and got “Staff” status in exchange. With a bit of preparation, such as a link to the staff radio network and databases, there is no reason one could not do staff work piloting such a robot. Indeed, Suitable Tech believes many jobs can be done entirely remotely, and even staffs their experimental retail store with nothing but remote workers — there are no flesh humans in the store at all.

Kathryn Myronuk has written her own notes and observations on Making Light, such as —

* Fandom will be developing norms on how remotely-presenced people attend cons, and I can see serious talks coming up. We weren’t allowed into the video room or to JRRM’s reading. We were Ramez Naam’s guest for the Hugo Loser’s party, but we were only allowed in after the room voted on it [would a group of SF writers vote “no” to let a robot in?]

* As B notes, he bought a membership, our local London friend who brought the Beam was there for free as our mobility helper, and I was often on the Beam too. If we’d been asked to buy a second membership we would have, but it wasn’t asked. Were we two people attending? What will attendance mean? Will people”just” using it for convenience or budget be considered differently from people using one by necessity?

[Thanks to Bill Higgins for the story.]

Four Things That Belong Under A Trufan’s Tree

iguanacon stamps on ebay

Enevelopes postmarked at the 1978 Worldcon.

It’s not too late to spend gobs of money on that special fannish someone.

Today on eBay you can get a 3-piece set of items postmarked at the 1978 Worldcon bearing the Viking mission to Mars stamp for a mere $1,000.

Are they really worth all that? Perhaps it’s the fact that the cancellation reads “Iguanacon 1” whereas the name of the event was “IguanaCon II,” though I doubt it can be claimed the mistake makes them more valuable (like that upside-down airplane stamp) — there wouldn’t have been any cancellations with the correct name.

451 asbestos editionBesides, those collectible postmarks look like a bargain compared with the asking price for an autographed first edition of Fahrenheit 451 with the rare asbestos binding – yours for only $16,000.

More frugal fans can still delight their friends with other affordable goodies.

frankensteins-monster-root-1495qxi2753_1470_1Hallmark is offering a Frankenstein’s Monster Christmas Ornament for $14.95:

Remember the chills and thrills of the first time Frankenstein’s Monster came to life every time you hang it from your tree.

I’m sure I will…
Planet Robot COMPOr Restoration Hardware is advertising a more conventional gift, Planet Robot, for $29.95.

Nostalgic for the whiz-bang, wind-up charm of vintage tin toys, we found these spot-on reproductions, meant to call forth the child within every adult. Reminiscent of a 1950s sci-fi movie robot, this emissary from Planet Robot is at your command. Wind him up and he’ll walk gamely forward, with sparks flying behind his transparent face shield.

Walking gamely forward while sparks fly — say, don’t these sound like ready-made convention volunteers?

[Thanks to Michael J. Walsh and John King Tarpinian for the story.]

New Zealand Worldcon Bid Locking In Regional Help

NZ2020_logo_0The NZ in 2020 Worldcon bid has announced that it can only continue if they get around 200 commitments by December 5 from people willing to work the con.

We are delighted to have anyone volunteer because WorldCons are always multinational and have people from pretty much every continent working on them. But this main push is for New Zealand and Australian fans. Because it’s crucial to have those people on the ground…

If we don’t get enough people in New Zealand and Australia willing to commit, then we will not be able to continue with the bid.

“Think of it as a people-based Kickstarter,” they say, a clever turn of phrase.

The whole appeal is filled with lighthearted responses to obvious points of resistance.

Frequently Asked Questions

2. Yikes! Six years ahead? I don’t know if:
a) I’ll be in the country
b) I’ll be married to Claudia Schiffer by then
c) I plan to join a cult
d) I’ll be destitute and living in a cardboard box under Grafton Bridge.

So, can you help us now, while you are still planning your stalking, sorry, courting, of Ms Schiffer? You can help now or at the convention or both, six years is plenty of warning. With the magic of the internet and those wonderful inventions called aircraft, you can be on the other side of the world and still be a part of this. In fact many of our US and UK friends have offered to help out already, they would love to see our bid succeed.

When Secret Masters Blab, Everybody Listens

In preparation for this year’s Smofcon32, happening in Manhattan Beach, CA the first weekend of December, convention bid committees have been invited to participate in the Fannish Inquisition.

The first stage is answering a survey of commonly-asked questions — about dates, facilities, policies, etc. These committees have submitted responses, which are posted on the Smofcon 32 website.

Seated Worldcons

2015
Sasquan 2015 FAQ
Sasquan 2015 the 73rd World Science Fiction Convention August 19-23, 2015 Spokane, Washington, USA\

2016
MidAmeriCon II FAQ
MidAmeriCon II the 74th World Science Fiction Convention August 17-21, 2016 Kansas City, Missouri, USA

Worldcon Bids

2017

Nippon in 2017 Bid FAQ
Montreal in 2017 Bid FAQ
Helsinki in 2017 Bid FAQ
Washington DC in 2017 Bid FAQ

2018
New Orleans in 2018 is still in pre-bid status
San Jose in 2018 FAQ

2019
Dublin in 2019 FAQ

2020
New Zealand in 2020 FAQ
Boston in 2020 Christmas Worldcon Bid FAQ

2021
Dallas/Fort Worth in 2021 FAQ

2022
Chicago in 2022 FAQ

NASFiC Bids

2017 or 2020
San Diego NASFiC Bid FAQ

Smofcon Bids

2015
Colorado Springs 2015 Smofcon Bid FAQ
Fort Worth 2015 Smofcon Bid FAQ

2016
Chicago 2016 Smofcon Bid FAQ

Update 11/24/2014: Added link to Montreal worldcon bid FAQ, which came in later.

Consolmagno To Give Sagan Acceptance Speech at Sasquan

Brother Guy J. Consolmagno

Brother Guy J. Consolmagno

Brother Guy Consolmagno, an astronomer at the Vatican Observatory, will give an acceptance speech for the Carl Sagan Medal at Sasquan, the 2015 Worldcon. The award is given annually by the American Astronomical Society.

Brother Guy, an active fan and a member of the MIT Science Fiction Society, will give this speech at 8:00 p.m. on Thursday evening of the convention.

Brother Guy will also be interviewing Guest of Honor Leslie Turek, also a MITSFS member, later in the convention.

The full press release follows the jump.

Continue reading

Sasquan Names Hugo Awards MCs

Sasquan has announced that the MCs for the 2015 Hugo Awards Ceremony will be David Gerrold and Tananarive Due.

David Gerrold is one of Sasquan’s Guests of Honor. Tananarive Due is the Cosby Chair in the Humanities at Spelman College, where she teaches screenwriting and journalism. Her novella “Ghost Summer” received the 2008 Kindred Award from the Carl Brandon Society, and her short fiction has appeared in best-of-the-year anthologies of science fiction and fantasy.

Those who follow Sasquan’s Hugo ceremony online will be able to experience the inaugural awards pre-show and post-show on UStream. These new bookend programs, called The Road to the Hugos, will feature a comprehensive look at all the awards and nominees, interviews with nominees and winners, and special segments documenting the history of the Hugo Awards.

The Road to the Hugos will be hosted by Warren Frey, Steven Schapansky, and Chris Burgess of Radio Free Skaro, the official podcast of Gallifrey One, the world’s largest and longest-running Doctor Who fan convention.

San Marino Worldcon Bid: Faux But Fun

San marino Worldcon bidThe new San Marino in 2019 bid asks “Why settle for a convention in a city when you could have an entire country?”

If they win, they’d like to run a 3,000-person Worldcon beginning August 7, 2019.

Even if they don’t – which I suspect is their preference — they will have succeeded in drawing attention to the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer, presented at the Hugo ceremony but inevitably overshadowed.

We think this is a mistake, that there should be more noise made about this award. Every year, the list of nominees should be a blazing signpost of authors you should be watching, or better still, reading.

The bid will underscore its message by publishing at least three volumes of an anthology series, Cream of San Marino: Stories by Campbell Award Nominees.

Lawrence Schoen, the editor, says they will only be available to preupporters. The first volume will include work by these 22 authors:

Charles Sheffield, Dan Wells, Daniel Marcus,  David Brin, Elissa Malcohn, Elizabeth Bear, Joel Rosenberg, John Varley, Judith Moffett, Julie Czerneda, K. J. Bishop, Katharine Eliska Kimbriel, Laura Resnick, Lawrence M. Schoen, Lev Grossman, Max Gladstone, Michael Burstein, Michael Kandel, Michaela Roessner, Ruth Berman, Seanan McGuire and Shane Tourtellotte.

So the bottom line is that the bid is a hoax but the anthologies are real.

The first official bid party will be November 22 at Philcon in Cherry Hill, NJ.

Presupport information is on the bid website. A basic presupporter gets their choice of one volume of the anthology series, higher levels get more volumes — and loftier titles.