Wednesday, 17 April 2013

Tea And Text's Guide to Surviving the Calgary Comic Expo Part 2

Survival Guide Part 2: Calgary Comic Expo 2013

You can find Part 1 of the Survival Guide HERE and it covers the Logistics such as tickets and how to get there.

Next Up:

This isn't completely about saying your pleases and thank you's because you should be doing those anyways. This is more about where/when/who can you take photos of, the absolutely inexcusable line jumps and such.

First up:


You're going to see an amazing bunch of stuff and you'll want to memorialize it all in photos - but have some decency.

Cosplayers: They're dressing up to be seen and to show off their fandom, but that doesn't necessarily mean they want a less than flattering photo immortalized on the internet. 

  • ALWAYS ASK PERMISSION - while one can argue that "oh they're in a public place I can take photos of them" see the explanation above. 
  • If they say no don't argue it or try and take a sneaky photo that is just creepy and you'll probably end up on the outside of a very cool convention if it comes to blows. 
  • Now...there is a bit of a grey area. If they're posing for a horde of other people with their camera's out and flashing then it's likely okay to snap one then, otherwise see bullet point 1. 
Celebrities: There's generally a photo area for photos WITH the celebrity - and you'll pay a hefty fee for it ($25 - >$100). (Photo Op Info HERE). But if you don't want to go that route you can:

  • Take photos during panels but NO FLASH. This is especially horrible in the smaller panel rooms where you'll ruin someone else's attempt at a photo, irritate the crowd and disorient the celebrity. 
  • Another option is if you're getting their autograph you can politely ASK PERMISSION to take a photo of them. Most will say yes - given that you DON'T USE FLASH (get the theme here people? I know a lot of you use the "auto" function on your cameras and it resets itself after you turn it off [I've been kicked out of museums for this], so really try to shift it to the no flash mode and leave it there). 
    • If they don't say yes - don't take it personally or get angry people, just say thanks and move along.


Waiting in line is Hell (if you watch Supernatural you'll remember this). But as a part of conventions it is inevitable especially since the expo SOLD OUT this year!! So 60,000 people have to move around in an orderly fashion. Let's be civil folks.

  • If you're going to a panel in one of the smaller rooms like Boyce theatre or the Palomino rooms you'll want to be at least 15-20 minutes early as the seating is very limited for these rooms and if it fills up - that's all there is. You should be fine to show up on time for events in the Corral - there's plenty of space and screens that project the panel up close for those who can't sit near the stage.
  • People with VIP Passes - get to go to the front of the line NO MATTER WHAT. So if they have a fancy schmancy badge, let them through, they paid for that exclusive access. I saw a few people get really irate when they got cut out of a panel because the only seats left were reserved for VIP's.
  • But on another note: if YOU have a VIP pass but your friends DON'T. That doesn't mean you get to take your friends on a ride with you to the front of the line. Either you go in without your friends, or you wait with them. 
  • Line Jumpers - you know, the people who casually stroll by and slip in where people aren't watching...or their friend is "holding" their spot for a group of 10 people?
    • This is really up to you, I enjoy telling people "HEY BACK OF THE LINE!!" - especially if I've been waiting there the whole time and some guy in front of me is going to let his 5 buddies budge in.
    • But there's always exceptions, so this is really at your own discretion. If it's a guy waiting for his girlfriend or a parent meeting up with their kid - just let it go. 
  • We're all here for the same thing: to have fun celebrating our fandom. So make friends with people in line - you'll be surprised how quickly time passes. However, if a "Which is better Star Trek vs Stargate?" (or what have you) argument comes up....just let it go.
  • Unfortunately in the smaller panel rooms like Boyce theatre you are NOT ALLOWED to stay in the room if you saw one panel and want to see the next one too. They make you leave and by then you end up at the end of a very long line - Unless you have a VIP pass.

  • They don't kick you out for panels happening in the Corral, so you can stay!

So you've got a costume to show off - great! I'd really like to take a closer look at your spear, but if it ends up in my eye there will be hell to pay.

    • common sense people!
  • Long trailing robes/skirts/Wings
    • Know where the ends are at all times, trying to walk down a hallway packed shoulder to shoulder with people is tricky enough without a wardrobe malfunction.
Don't forget your standard "please", "thank you" and "excuse me" and you'll be just fine! The next guide will be on what to bring to survive a day at the expo!

If you have any more etiquette suggestions leave them in the comments below! 

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