Announcement from Uncle Kage Regarding Media at Cons
Below is an announcement that Uncle Kage asked me to pass on to Flayrah
We all know what happened at Confurence.
I have seen a lot of rumors flying, most of them villifying Darrell Exline. I won't have that. Darrell and I have had our differences, but he is a man who lost many thousands of dollars of his own money in a desperate effort to keep life in his convention. The reason he did that was to continue to provide people with the opportunity to get together and have fun. It was something he believed in, something important enough to risk his own financial stability to promote. Whether or not you agree with his methods, at least respect the effort he put forth. Take that from one who knows just how much that takes out of a person. He did this for you. Does that mean nothing?
People have said that Darrell was paid for this, and took the money as a "sell out" of the fandom. That is hogwash. The *hotel* received $4000 from the filmmakers for the right to film there. Not a penny of that was applied to any of ConFurence's debt. Take it from me -- hotels do not work that way.
People have said that Darrell did this deliberately as a means of destroying the fandom. That is also hogwash. Why would a man who gave so much want to do such a thing? The truth is that he took a calculated risk. The people who contacted him made a lot of high-minded promises and made it sound as though it would be something wonderful.
Darrell no doubt believed that he would have control of the situation. What he did not consider was that these people have a wealth of experience in this business. Getting out of control is what they do, and they do it well.
Darrell felt he would be doing something positive for the fandom. He misjudged the sleaziness and deceiptfulness of the filmmakers, as well as the amount of control he would have over the situation. I know. I get a lot of emails from these people myself, and believe me, they can sound VERY pursuasive. They plead, they promise, they cross their hearts and hope to die, they tell you how much they respect you. It is very easy to fall into their trap. It could have happened to any of us.
With this example, though, it is less likely to. Anthrocon has never allowed tabloid TV shows in, and while I'm still breathing, it never will.
I recently received a request from TechTV to do a show on Anthrocon. It sounded perfectly harmless, but then, they always do. Their description of the show as highlighting the "funny, sexy, scary" side of the internet was all I needed to hear. The answer they received was the same that they all receive: "Anthrocon is a private event held on private property. Its membership is not interested in being the subject of your documentary. Thank you for your query."
That is all you need to say. To these people, the less said is the better.
Anthrocon's policy on media coverage remains the same. We retain the rights to all video and audio recordings made at our convention. They can be used privately, but cannot be broadcast without our express written permission. You agree to that when you get in, or you don't get in.
Lay off of Darrell. Did he screw up? Perhaps. Sucks to be human sometimes. Was it intentional? Of course not. Did he profit from it? Hell, no. Does he feel badly about it? Hell, yes. How do I know all of this? It's my job.
Will these two shows destroy our fandom? No way. We've had worse, and we've come right back each time. We'll continue to do so. It's as I've always said: they're just growing pains. Furry fandom is in its awkward adolesence right now, and we must roll with these punches as we continue on our way to maturity.
See you all in July.
-- Uncle Kage