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My CaliFur VIII con report

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Califur VIII: It's startingCrossaffliction is working on a sort into categories of all Flayrah’s posts. He has started at the beginning in January 2001, and is so far through September 2004. He notes that as of that date, there are only seven Furry convention reports. “[T]hey seem to have fallen out of fashion as of late. In case you hadn't noticed.”

He is right. I have complained about the difficulty that this makes in writing a history of Furry fandom. Early s-f fans wrote convention reports of five to ten pages in their fanzines. When Sam Moskowitz wrote his history of s-f fandom in the 1930s, and Harry Warner, Jr. wrote his of s-f fandom in the 1940s, and I wrote a history of the World S-F Convention from 1939 through 1948 in 1976, we had no trouble getting information on the conventions because of the long, detailed con reports in the fanzines. But there has been little of this in Furry fandom. A Furry con report tends to be little more than, “I went to the con and I had a good time”, or, “A lot of people caught the con crud”, or posting a half dozen or so photos of unidentified Fursuiters.

To do something about this, here is my very incomplete report of CaliFur VIII just past. I hope that other attendees can add to it.

Califur VIII Header

CaliFur VIII took place at the Irvine Marriott Hotel in Irvine, California, on June 1-3, 2012. Its theme was “The Roaring Twenties”. Furry artist/fursuiter Mochi (not Moon Mochi) from Pennsylvania was the guest-of-honor. Official attendance was 950. Due to my poor health (this was my first Furry convention in over four years; I was in a wheelchair, with my sister Sherrill pushing me), I could only attend for Saturday the 2nd.

Califur 2012 fursuit paradeThe weather was good, and we had a smooth freeway drive from my hospital, about 55 miles away. We arrived about 11:15 a.m., and went into the hotel’s coffee-shop/restaurant, Elements, for an early lunch. We were joined by Steve Gallacci and Roz Gibson. Elements is an excellent restaurant, and we took our time to enjoy a leisurely meal.

Sherry and I went over to the convention side of the main floor about 1:00 p.m. Everything was on the ground floor, except for the Con Suite which was on the second floor. (It was filled with “health nibblements” like carrot sticks and V-8 juice. Maybe the con committee figured that only herbivores would attend the con.) There were so many attendees in full Fursuits walking the halls that it was hard to tell later when they deliberately gathered together for the Fursuit Parade. Most attendees who were not in full Fursuits were wearing tails. This was a change from the Furry cons before 2005, when I had my stroke and became hospitalized; full Fursuits were much less common then.

We went first to the Dealers’ Room, where Glen Wooten, the Art Show/Dealers’ head, had comped membership badges waiting for us. As long as we were there, we toured them first. The Dealers’ Room and Art Show were essentially one large room. We spent a lot of time in the Dealers’ Room, where I had conversations with many old friends like Terrie Smith and Megan Giles. Kay Shapero, who is on the ALAA committee which administers the Ursa Major Awards, was giving out the ALAA’s new stick-on badge ribbons with the Ursa Major logo and the caption ANYTHING TO RECOMMEND?, in silver lettering on lavender. (They’re pretty but very difficult to read; Kay & I agreed that further printings should be silver lettering against a darker background.) I put out a stack of flyers for my forthcoming anthologies of Furry s-f short fiction, Already Among Us and The Ursa Major Awards Anthology. Glen Wooten hung a 2 foot x 3 foot poster enlargement of Roz Gibson’s front cover for Already Among Us in the Art Show.

CaliFur is an unofficial successor to the ConFurences, which started in 1989, so there were many “graymuzzles” present. Sherry & I did not attend the programmed “Remembering Those We’ve Lost”, which was on Friday, but I overheard a few expressions of sadness in the Dealers' Room about the death of Waarhorse/Henry Bestwick, who seemed to have attended most Furry cons during the 1990s and always stood out as being more neatly dressed and groomed than most of the attendees (you could tell that he was in the military or ex-military, even without being in uniform). I was disappointed, but not surprised, to see that only one or two dealers (notably Rabbit Valley) were selling any Furry books or magazines. Most of the dealers were selling sketches or art prints or Fursuit parts and materials. Another print dealer, Bengaley Summercat, the publisher of Anthroview, asked my permission to interview me in the near future; we exchanged e-mail addresses.

Califur 2012 con badgeThis might be a good place to make a couple of complaints. The registration badges that Glen Wooten gave Sherry & me were very pretty pieces of plastic with a full-color cartoon design, but they had the attendee’s names on the BACK. From the front, all the badges were identical; the attendees were essentially anonymous. One of the main purposes of a convention badge is to let people know who you are, so that fan friends by correspondence or e-mail can identify each other in person. I suppose it’s considered today, what with Skype and people’s ability to e-mail photographs to each other, that it’s no longer necessary for con badges to identify the wearer. Many attendees were also wearing individualized Furry con badges, of course.

When I asked Glen if there was any convention program/souvenir book to go with the badges, he waved us to a table at the back of the Dealers’ Room where there was a take-one (or a handful) stack of conbooks. I was shocked at how skimpy it was. Aside from the colorful cover (unidentified; by Mochi?) and the con program schedule, there was nothing in it. I got the impression that most attendees did not bother to take one. I know that most Furcons have thick conbooks full of program schedules, artwork, fiction and articles, biographies of speakers, Furry advertising, lists of the con staff, sometimes neighborhood restaurant guides. What is wrong with CaliFur?

I was also shocked by how tiny the Art Show was. It had plenty of space, and it was well lighted and displayed, but you could see the whole show in about three minutes. Also, frankly, there was nothing outstanding about any of the entrants. The only artist whose work I recognized was Terrie Smith, and this was just more of the same type of art that she has been entering in Furry Art Shows for the past twenty years.

Sherry & I left the Dealers’ Room about 2:45, and spent the next fifteen minutes looking at all the Fursuiters bustling past us in the halls. The official Fursuit Parade was going on, but we were seeing so many Fursuiters anyway that there seemed no point to go out to it.

I’m sure that CaliFur VIII must have had other organizers, but all that we saw all day was Rod O’Riley running everywhere and apparently doing everything.

Minnie and Micky MouseAt 3:00 p.m., we went to a program event on “Animation in the Early 20th Century”. This was supposed to be on animated cartoons of the 1920s, in keeping with the con’s theme. This was very enjoyable because of the panel’s two main speakers, who were veteran animators who were knowledgeable, enthusiastic, friendly, and encouraged participation from the audience of twenty or so. One was Tom Sito, an animator for most of the major studios since the 1970s, the head of the professional animators’ labor union for about thirty years, and the author of a couple of books on animation industry history. The other was Lenord Robinson, an animator since Disney’s The Fox and the Hound in 1981. (I forgot Robinson’s name and had to ask Sito by e-mail; of course there was nothing in the con literature to identify either of them. In fact, I could not tell if they were programmed speakers, or if they just stepped up and took charge of a leaderless Special Interest Group.) The discussions were mainly but not entirely on animation of the 1920s; we also got into their forerunners of the 1910s, and a little bit of post-1920s 20th century American animation.

At 4:00, Sherry & I went to the 2011 Ursa Major Awards presentation. This was in one of the hotel’s largest ballrooms, which was embarrassingly almost empty. This was not the con’s fault; it was very well publicized. Most Furry fans are just not interested in the awards. The emcee was Gary Whalen, and the power point/visual presentations were prepared by Rod O’Riley.

The presentations went smoothly but unexcitingly. They were not exactly raced through, but the presentations went very briskly. "The nominees are" 1,2,3,4,5, "and the winner is" whichever, about 5 seconds of applause; on to the next category. Even with one more category plus the ALAA's Choice Award this year, the whole thing ran only about 30-40 minutes and adjourned early. The only winner present was GreenReaper, the editor of Flayrah which won the Best Anthropomorphic Magazine award, who came to CaliFur VIII from Texas. He gave a brief acceptance speech (which, thanks to an inaudible microphone and his thick Brit accent, was hard to understand). It was announced that the other winners would have their trophies sent to them.

At 5:00 was the second Animation event, “Animation Today and Tomorrow”, also with Tom Sito and Lenord Robinson. I had come prepared and passed around photocopies of three of my animation book reviews from Animation World Network. We discussed recent animation features, the rise of CGI animation, and Hayao Miyazaki’s work. Robinson waxed enthusiastically on how this is a great time to become an animator, if not to find a job in the industry; what with all of the recent technological advances, it is almost possible for a lone animator to make an entire feature at home. This event was also very lively and, if we had not been reminded to end it at 6:00, would easily have run overtime.

At 6:00, Sherry & I went to dinner. Elements was so good for lunch that we had no hesitation about going back there for dinner. After dinner, it was time to return to my hospital, so we missed the evening’s main event, the Fur le Dance cabaret. There were lots of other events all day long, including an unofficial but heavily-publicized “Equestrian Embassy” hospitality suite that was showing MLP:FIM videos and having other Bronies activities, which we also missed.

Some other veteran Furry fans that I chatted with, or at least saw, during the day were Ken Pick, David Bliss, and Zrath. That’s my CaliFur VIII report. It’s missing Friday and Sunday completely, and what went on Saturday that I didn’t see. Can anyone else fill those in? And let’s see some Anthrocon 2012 con reports that go beyond “it was a big con, and I had a good time.”

Comments

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People still post con reports, though not all are of a publishable length. However, they see no need to put them in a fanzine to reach their friends - they just post them in their own journals. Eight are linked from Califur VIII's 'scritch and bitch' journal.

Obviously this is a problem for people researching conventions. To this end WikiFur has a list of furry convention resources, but it's incomplete and could do with some love (or weekly maintenance, given the number of conventions nowadays).

The con badge issue is real; I know few fans by face, and there are more every day. In fact, there are two issues; some don't want their real name on a badge. Many conventions let you choose what name should be on the front, or whether to display both.

The con book was reduced to a program book (which most people got on registration) and the funds saved were apparently used to support main events. I understand they may do away with it altogether like FWA, and rely on digital displays.

As for the other days; I got in late on Friday, just in time for the ice-cream social. The ice-cream came pre-scooped; a little odd, but it is hard to complain when you can add all the nuts you want. Sunday felt like a constant winding down, with people leaving throughout the day; it is not like Further Confusion, which can go on well into Monday. I was not too disappointed by having to leave myself due to a flight change.

The cabaret was . . . interesting. As a patron, I had a front-row seat. The acts themselves were generally well-done; in particular I was impressed by two pairs of dancers, though the antics of the event's front man and a female performer who put on several solo acts were also worth noting. Unfortunately one of those acts was stopped halfway through. My understanding is that this was due a local law. Honestly, from all I'd heard of Califur's Fur Le Dance I was not expecting that. It also ran very long, in part due to stoppages, but also because it took almost half an hour to start. (Fortunately, furries are easily entertained by batting a giant inflatable ball around.) I think the organizers need to figure the limits and timing of the event out better in advance, both for the sake of the audience and the performers who may have spent significant time getting an act ready.

Throughout the convention, the video room showed a variety of well-selected series and movies, including Mongrels and Kung Fu Panda 2.

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Apparently Mochi (Michele Hunt), the CaliFur VIII Artist Guest of Honor, and MoonMochi (?), are two separate people. Douglas Muth writes, "I think he might be incorrectly listing Moon Mochi as GoH at Califur: I was curious when I read it and had to go to her Twitter feed to make sure that yes, she was here in PA that weekend."

Sorry for the confusion. This illustrates why I do not like cute Furry pseudonyms.

Fred Patten

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It works fairly well as long as they don't use the same pseudonyms. Alas, there are only so many to go around. I have updated the article accordingly.

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The problem with doing convention reviews in my mind, particularly for large ones like AC is that the experience is really unique to the individual. For example, I spent 3 hours Saturday night getting an injury checked out at the hospital so that would have an impact on my particular AC story, it's not really conductive to a review.

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If anything is too private/personal, you can always leave it out of a con report, or emphasize that it was personal to you and should not be considered an objective opinion.

To be accurate, there are two broad types of convention reports. There are those that are meant to be "convention reports" -- reports of what the convention was like. And there are the personal con reports; those that concentrate upon what you did at the convention, and whether you had a good time or a bad time. From the viewpoint of a historian (my B.A. was in History), both are needed. To write an objective history of a con in the future, you need to read and compare several different con reports, to collect the different views of what went on (no one person can attend all the events), to decide whether the good or bad experience of an individual event was unique to the reporter and not a general opinion or that so many attendees felt the same way about it that it can be taken as a general opinion of success/failure, and so on.

Fred Patten

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If you want something intended to be a more objective report about the con, it might be worth interviewing senior con staff during or shortly after an event (and asking to do things like sit in on the post-mortem meeting). You're a long-standing and respected member of the community, so they'd almost certainly say "yes" to that (for just about any of the North American cons and possibly others). Agree to keep some of what they say private for X years, and they'll probably be willing to volunteer even more (the goal being to compile historical information, not just write Flayrah articles about the material).

The only recent attempts I'm aware of to compile general-overview rather than personal-experience information would be news media investigations of cons, which are rare (due to being frowned upon by the fandom) and optimized to appeal to their editors and readership, rather than for being of use to historians.

For personal-experience reports, I'll second GreenReaper's comments at the top of the thread. Self-publishing (via blogs and similar) is so easy and so common that fans have little incentive to publish their reports through any central aggregator (online or print). That said, you could probably get people to submit links to or copies of theirs to you if you announced that you were starting a long-term project to archive them for historical use. Enough people know of you or know people who would vouch for you that you could probably pull it off.

While I don't have material that's useful to contribute directly, I know about half of the past and present FeralCom staff, and can put you in touch with them, if that's a con you'd want historical information for. There may also be coding-related ways that I can help (mining archive.org or google groups for fandom historical information is doable if there's a clear enough idea of what you're looking for). Contact me if any of that is of interest to you.

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As far as AC goes they'd figure out he's doing it for Flayrah and they'd say, "No." Most of their staff is still upset we ran the story of IK's ban two years ago.

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Why would he be doing it for Flayrah?

I've been getting the impression that he's doing it for himself (much as with Dronon's history projects).

If AC wanted to add a "don't publish this on Flayrah" rider, I doubt that would be a show-stopper.

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Well, I would want to publish it SOMEwhere; if not on Flayrah, then someplace else. The whole point of writing a history is to make the information available to posterity, not to keep it secret.

Do you know the story of the "Secret History" by Procopius? Procopius was the official court historian of Emperor Justinian of the Eastern Roman Empire. He wrote the approved history that Justinian wanted to be known by. Dictators are still having official histories written; see the official North Korean press releases of Kim Jong-il's exploits, such as that when he took up golf for the first time in 1994, he got 11 hole-in-ones and finished 38 under par. His 17 bodyguards personally witnessed this and swear it is true. But Procopius also wrote the "Secret History", with instructions that it not be published until a hundred years after his death (actually lost until it was discovered in the Vatican Library and published in 1623), about what REALLY happened during Justinian's reign, with emphasis on what a bloodthirsty bitch Empress Theodora was. Almost all historians today base their histories of the politics of Justinian's reign on Procopius' "Secret History" (and more than one s-f author has ripped off Procopius' account of what really happened during the bloody Nike riots of 532 A.D. into a s-f novel).

If there is someone besides Flayrah that would be interested in an in-depth convention report, I could submit it there. Or I could leave instructions that it not be published until after my death. But ultimately I want it to be published somewhere.

Fred Patten

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I'd encourage you to write a book about it, actually. Ye Wiki (the big one) says that you've been compiling information about this sort of thing for many fandoms for many, many years, and have a few publication credits along those lines already. Even a vanity book or one published through a furry publisher would reach _some_ audience, and the advantage to both of those approaches is that the cost-of-entry is quite low.

I've pestered Dronon about writing up his Piltdown research for similar reasons. I should prod him again about it now that I think of it.

(I may write a book some day, but my forte is science and engineering (mad- and non-mad-), not historical research, alas.)

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I have been wailing pitifully about the shrinkage of the CaliFur art show for some time, but I have also had it pointed out to me that many conventions (not just furry ones) have been having their art shows shrink for some time. With the rise of art sites like FurAffinity/InkBunny and sales of art CDs, it seems as if the traditional SF con art show is becoming a thing of the past. I hope not, as I still think they're cool.

I was very, VERY disappointed by the attendance at the Ursa Major Awards presentation. By shear math alone, I figure that there had to be about 200 of the nearly 1800 Ursa Major voters from this year in attendance at CaliFur. But there were far less than 200 in the room for the ceremony.

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Anthrocon's art show seems as strong as ever. That may, in fact, be your problem - both conventions do not allow artists to ship work directly to the show, and they are within a two week period. I'm guessing that many artists have to choose between Califur and an event which is five times larger and closer. You could try asking artists why they didn't come.

As for the Ursa Majors, 20 might have been closer to the figure . . . I think you need to look at where your votes are coming from, and how many (or how few) categories they are voting on. Judging by the strength of the victory of My Little Pony and Equestria Daily, many voters may not be heavily associated with furry fandom.

You're probably also overestimating the proportion of furry fans who attend Califur. We know from surveys that perhaps 40% of fans who can be bothered to fill out a survey go to conventions. In addition, many live overseas, and many others only go to regional conventions. At best, I'd say Califur is picking up 5% of "dedicated fans" (compare Inkbunny's 100,000+ members, and it's not the largest).

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I still don't know why you think furries don't like My Little Pony, Green Reaper.

Furries liked My Little Pony before it was cool.

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Certainly there were fans of My Little Pony active in the furry community prior to MLP:FIM. It's more that I think bronies like My Little Pony, and there may be as many or more of them as furries, so they can swing the vote.

Of course, this gets into the question "are bronies furries?". Nuka will be at BronyCon this weekend; perhaps he can figure it out. I suspect most bronies see themselves as fans of a particular show (similar to Gargoyles or TMNT) rather than of anthropomorphic animals in general, yet would vote on a furry award to help their group win.

(Refs: "I never considered this a furry site" (EQD editor) - Reddit threads where bronies express concern.)

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My viewpoint is I'm "not a brony;" I'm a furry, so I can like a cartoon about talking animals without joining another fandom, thank you very much, so I choose not to be a brony. So, it would be kind of unfair of me to say bronies are furries, if a brony chooses not to be a furry. But I'm apparently kind of a weirdo for thinking you can like cartoon animals and not be a furry, so there is that.

My real point is, though, I don't buy your "the bronies voted for MLP:FiM and ED" conspiracy. I think there are enough furries who like MLP and brony/furries to win the voting without bringing in a group of bronies who aren't furries to clinch the win. In fact, I don't think there are enough bronies-but-not-furries who are either a. aware of furry in general more than vaguely and the Ursa Majors in specific at all or b. furry friendly to actually matter.

A lot of bronies seem to be anti-furry; sure, that's kind of a dick move on their part from the furry viewpoint, but seeing as how people outside of the brony fandom actually kind of like the idea of bronies, while people outside of the furry fandom don't tend to like the idea of furries, from their viewpoint, it was still a dick move, but it was a smart dick move.

Also, just kind of rambling here, but fandoms seem to either draw the "eternal virgin" card (Trekkies, comic book geeks) or "sex freak" card (anime fans, us); there's no middle ground, or, for that matter, truth to the stereotypes (eternal virgins and sex freaks are found in all the fandoms, but you get one or the other as a stereotype). It's looking like bronies drew the "eternal virgin" card, but it is still a young fandom, and there's still time (and ample evidence) that they can make a run for "sex freaks" if they want to.

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Ooh, and another example of a group of anthropomorphic animal fans who seemed to be either unaware of or studiously avoiding mentioning* the furry fandom were Redwall fans, at least in the first half of the last decade, despite the fact that they seemed even furrier on the outside looking in than even bronies; lot's of people playing in character, and even a disproportionate number of fox fans.

*Redwall author Brian Jacques was apparently not a furry fan ... fan.

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That's kind of my bone with the furry stereotype. I mean, if I'm going to be seen as a sex fiend to the outside world and actually get no sex, it's like getting the taxes without the income.

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I don't know, being an absolute virgin myself, being labeled a sex freak can be kind of flattering, actually.

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Another possibility: artists may now find it more profitable to sell commissions directly than work on art show pieces. Conventions helped to bring buyer and seller together, but with everyone on the Internet they may be less necessary for this purpose - and a guaranteed $Y may be better than the chance of 2 x $Y, especially now.

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The handful of artists I know tend to do brisk business in commissions at cons, so I don't think those are mutually exclusive. Online, you have to wait for the potential buyer to come across your site. At a con, they just have to glance in the direction of your table to receive the pitch.

I suspect that prints are also easier to sell at a convention, where you can say "I want that" and have it in your hand in moments, than online. It's not that online print sales don't happen; it's just that I imagine there'd be a strong tendency to consider clicking "save image" to be good enough to satisfy the "I want that" impulse.

That said, all of this mostly applies to the dealer tables, rather than art show/auction aspects of such events. And it's also possible that some of my impressions above are mistaken, as I'm not an artist and am going by a pretty small sample size. Still food for thought.

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Oh, boy.

Well, there goes the "exemption clause" I added to the original post. You just had to keep me honest!

I finished up 2004, but haven't gotten much further. This'll be a while (though if people are looking forward to it enough to mention it in their articles, uh, I'll speed up a little).

Note: Also, if I ever get around to attending a con (even if I attend Wichita's Anime Festival as a furry again), a con report is the first thing on my to do list.

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I suppose it’s considered today, what with Skype and people’s ability to e-mail photographs to each other, that it’s no longer necessary for con badges to identify the wearer.

I've never heard of another furry convention that prints names on the back of the badge! Yeah, we can share photos with each other but many (most?) furries DON'T. They want to maintain the illusion online of being their fursona. Having a lousy memory myself I can't stress enough how helpful and necessary it is for badge names to be visible at cons if I don't want to experience the whole weekend alone.

Actually, you're a perfect example: I wouldn't mind shaking your hand for all of your contributions to the fandom, and at least chatting with you briefly about its history; but had I been at the con I would have walked right past you without ever knowing it was you.

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Well, I'm the old guy in the wheelchair. I sort of stand out in a crowd.

Fred Patten

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You'd be suprised there were at least 3 people in wheelchairs at AC. And a whole bunch of old guys. And at least one old lady in a wheel chair whom I stood near during the fursuit parade (kage's mom).

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My guess would be that they just assumed most people would be wearing commissioned con badges. These seem to be nearly ubiquitous now, and they're also one of the more popular at-con commission items (as it's easy to finish a batch of them before the end of the con, vs. trying to finish even a single more complex piece).

That said, I still like to be able to read names on con badges. My own complaint with a couple of past cons' badges is the names being printed in unreadably-small type (normal interaction distance is more than one foot).

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S-f convention goers have been complaining for decades about name badges that have the name of the convention in large type when everyone knows the name of the con that they're at, and the name of the member in tiny, impossible-to-read type. It got so bad that one con, the Westercon (West Coast Science Fantasy Conference), even spells out in its Bylaws that the con must issue name badges and what size type is to be used for the member's name: "1.4 Name Badges and Membership Numbers. All committees shall issue name badges for all attending members. Name badges for pre-registered members shall display the member’s name in no less than 24-point bold type. All committees shall assign a unique membership number upon processing of a membership. This number provided to each member with the site selection ballot and with each progress report, shall be printed on membership name badges, and shall be used for site-selection purposes. In the event a membership is transferred, the old membership number, if applicable, shall be noted, both on the badge and on registration information used for site-selection voting administration."

Most Furry conventions hate bureaucracy, so would probably not want to adopt this as a rigid rule. Still, let's urge all con committees to PLEASE use 24-point bold type for members' names on con badges.

Fred Patten

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Tom Sito was at the con and it wasn't even publicized? What a failure!

I know his name well, and sure would have liked to hear him talk and find out what brought him there.

Regarding selling books and media at the dealer's room:

My experiences as a book dealer leads me to think that the problem with that is the same as the problem with book stores generally these days.

Some items are much better sold in person (apparel, personalized sketches). Some specialized and not that profitable things, like heavy crates of books, are not very well worth hauling long distances and setting up to sell for 3 days, when the reader can just as easily click "buy" any time from a website with no overhead. A place like Rabbit Valley however, can get exposure and offer browsing for its own publishing that the reader might not have known about otherwise. That reminds me of how some niche independent book stores still do OK compared to bankrupt chains (such as Borderlands sci-fi book store in my neighborhood of San Francisco.)

There must be quite modest potential for focusing just on the niche of furry fans. Who does make a living from this fandom? I can guess: some artists, a few fursuit makers, a handful who make clothes or publish comics... a certain maker of unnamable toys... some web business? Not much more as far as I would guess.

At Fur Con this year (my first furry convention) I tried dealing like I when started at a small sci-fi con in 2006. These days my stock has a lot of high end art books (not specifically furry stuff). The response was just... OK. It made the trip worth it enough, and I could write it off as business expense too, but it was a lot of trouble, and I would have made more money staying home. I'm more likely to go to these cons just for fun.

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Um, actually, Tom Sito and Lenord Robinson WERE publicized. As soon as we confirmed they were coming we put the word out on several furry boards and in our on-line newsletter.

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I can't seem to find that mention online . . . from my perspective, I'd have expected to see it on your guests page, or perhaps events. Those and Califur's own forums are what I looked at when registering.

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Thanks for the correction. I had the impression he wasn't named at all, from what Fred wrote above. Also I would have liked to see their names prominently advertised on the website, not just a board or a newsletter. Like, #1 guest of honor on the events page where he is absent.

You had one of the most important people in the animation industry (so named by AWN.com), a mainstream published author with serious academic and entertainment industry cred, and you didn't do that. HUGE failure. Please get your act together for next year!

It definitely would have helped if programming was announced in advance. I looked and could not find a current list of events until, almost, the day before the con.

Lenord Robinson sounds like a treasure as well. I didn't know his name, and would like to have had the chance to learn about him there instead of here. They are people I would have given a very warm welcome at the con, to hopefully make a connection with them as a professional animator.

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I looked everywhere one would expect the convention's guests to be publicized, and I could not find any names except Mochi's.

By the way, is it CaliFur or Califur? Inquiring minds want to know ...

Fred Patten

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CaliFur.

And here I go, publicizing our GOH for next year: Maxwell Alexander Drake, author of of the Genesis of Oblivion saga. http://www.maxwellalexanderdrake.com/ We'll have plenty of other guests from Furry Art and Animation joining us too, and I will make CERTAIN to tell everyone who they are.

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Please do. By the way, the CaliFur reports on WikiFur seem to get skimpier on details as they go along. The vital statistics through CaliFur VI are there, but for CaliFur VII and CaliFur VIII there is a lot of information missing. Could you bring them up to date?

Fred Patten

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About the author

Fred (Fred Patten)read storiescontact (login required)

a retired former librarian from North Hollywood, California, interested in general anthropomorphics