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Unread 02-18-2013, 04:06 PM   #16
robin97531
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Congrats to those who were awesome!

While I was a pretty perturbed about the door and elevator blockages, I would like to say that almost all of the staff I had the pleasure talking with were very friendly and understanding. The several that I spoke with were just doing their job and trying to get through the weekend. I witnessed one guy, who was not originally security staff, giving 120%. He was trying to help as much as he could and diffuse the angry masses.

I am lucky to have had *no* bad experiences with the BBYO kids. I ran into several of the kids around the hotel and talked to many of them. Most of them were excited about the con and interested in what we were doing and how they could get involved. The ones who weren't were not afraid to talk when I struck up a conversation in the elevator. It seemed like most of these kids were great, and that the few who I have heard about in other posts were just an exception.

I know that several of us Katsucon attendees were also way out of line at times. Both sides were hurt because of that. I hope that if the con is ever double booked again, they will let anyone go anywhere they like and mingle freely. Information leads to understanding and helps to reduce conflict!
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Unread 02-18-2013, 04:32 PM   #17
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Besides, I can like a fandom and still dislike that there were six panels for it.
Yes, but this doesn't mean the panels were "terrible." I also dislike that they accepted so many Ask a Nation panels (considering I am part of the original group that started that panel back in 2010), mainly because we wind up competing for the "good" time slots, and the fact that there have been other groups at other cons who have used the same name as us and done things I don't approve of, such as use the panel as a platform to ask for monetary donations for personal things, which then gets associated with my panel.

However, that doesn't mean the panels that existed were "terrible."
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Unread 02-18-2013, 05:13 PM   #18
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4th Katsucon I've been to...probably the best I've been to. The Katsucon/BBYO segregation was kind of strange, though I never felt personally affected by it. The juxtaposition of Katsucon and the troubled marriage rehab group from last year was more awkward, imho.

My only complaints are that the Gaylord gym does't have kettlebells and their bars don't stock kina lillet/blanc. Oh, and when I say I want my martini stirred, that does NOT mean I want it shaken.
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Unread 02-18-2013, 07:19 PM   #19
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Overall, a highly successful Katsucon, but this was at least partly for reasons that had little to do with the con.

Pros:
- Badge and panelist check-in done WAY better than before. And thank you to the staff in badge pick-up for helping my group with a crisis that arose at the last minute. Also, the ID check went smoothly, too.
- Panels: Yes, there were scads, probably too many, "ask a nation" and "homestuck" panels, but that's not what I went to. The cosplay panels were uniformly excellent, and props for being able to reschedule our Touhou panel to a more appropriate time. Rope Bondage was also quite good.
- Photoshoots: The Gaylord is always an excellent forum for photoshoots. Even without the gazebo (more on this in a minute....), the Gaylord and surrounding areas have many beautiful spots for photoshoots.

Cons:
- Getting the Gazebo back: If the consensus on the web is true and we only got the gazebo back because some big name cosplayer pitched seven kinds of childish temper tantrum, than shame on her for doing so, and shame on Katsucon for panicking over it. Yes, the gazebo is important to many of us (I still remember taking the "Arcana" shots for the Persona group back in 2011), but as stated above, there are many, many other places for us to have our shoots, several of which are superior to the gazebo. If Katsu wanted the gazebo back, they should have done so for everyone, not because some person threw a fit.

- The formal dance and dance lessons: Listen up, Katsu.
* The dance lessons were poorly run. Only one dance was taught. While some of the things that were done were good, such as splitting up the class by experience, there wasn't enough follow-through on these. Also, the teacher made a.....questionable comment w/r/t transgendered people. I don't think she meant to offend, but she should have chosen a different way to say "hey, men, some of you should try learning the woman's part, since we have more men than women for once".
Next time around, more dances should be taught. Teach the basics for three or four dances rather than digging too deeply into one. And perhaps the con should consider offering beginner and intermediate instruction if they want to try getting more in-depth instruction out there.
* The dance itself was AWFUL. This was the worst dance I've seen since Katsucon 2009. The lessons only taught the waltz, and only one or two waltzes were played. Worse, most of the music was not anime-inspired at all, but rather kind of oldish pieces. Much of the music was undancable - basic 4/4 with no real rhythm to it. This makes things very difficult - and boring - for the beginners in the crowd, and I had problems with a lot of the music as well.

- Elevators. It is time for Katsucon to do what ACen does and post a couple of people at the Lobby/Atrium/2F elevator banks in order to keep traffic moving and to prevent people from riding the elevators up and down just one floor.

Like I said, I had a great con. I met many awesome people, and got to hang out with old friends, so alls to the good anyway. And honestly, it is the people who are the most important.

See you next year.
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Unread 02-18-2013, 07:24 PM   #20
AnimatedPoison
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Originally Posted by tatooine View Post
- Ban the Nazi guy. I saw that his display was a little less flashy on Saturday, but he'd put up more of his crap on Sunday. His booth fee can't be worth the poor publicity he brings Katsu.
As I mentioned in the thread specifically concerning the cross-booking, I would hope that Katsucon attendees would be sensitive to the fact that this guy, plus characters being cosplayed from certain series,' would maybe be some salt in the wound to the other convention goers. I mean honestly, even if done innocently, what a slap in the face that must have been-- how can you blame any of them for being offended?

I hadn't been to Katsu in 5 years, and the con has certainly gotten HUGE. There was a lot of programming, but quantity wasn't necessarily equal to quality. This con had a lot more anime I actually wanted to see, which I appreciate. The dance wasn't even on the schedule, which didn't concern me personally, but I knew people who wanted to go and were looking for answers. Disappointed in the Zelda panel on Sunday due to misinformation being given out by the host about the games (like basic plot information).

I was impressed by the Gaylord, having never been, and that area adjacent is really nice and convenient (and overpriced, as you should expect). It was certainly bitter cold but I don't think it kept anyone from having a good time. We saw some amazing costumes, and met some really nice people. Thanks to everyone who stopped and asked me and my brother for pictures. It was his first big con and it really made his weekend to meet so many enthusiastic and friendly people.

All in all it was a good time-- a first for Katsu for me. I'd say the staff is improving, because I've had issues in previous years, which is why there was such a delay in my going back. The Page-a-chair program was a great idea, and I hope that those of you who had issues with volunteers and staff utilized it, if you even knew about it (it was printed on the back of your badge).

Also, registration for at-the-door was fantastic: we paid by credit card on a tablet and stepped out of line instantly with badges in hand. We only waited maybe 5 or 10 minutes total. Nice!
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Unread 02-18-2013, 10:33 PM   #21
Dire Wolf 1984
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silentsword View Post
Overall, a highly successful Katsucon, but this was at least partly for reasons that had little to do with the con.

Pros:
- Badge and panelist check-in done WAY better than before. And thank you to the staff in badge pick-up for helping my group with a crisis that arose at the last minute. Also, the ID check went smoothly, too.
- Panels: Yes, there were scads, probably too many, "ask a nation" and "homestuck" panels, but that's not what I went to. The cosplay panels were uniformly excellent, and props for being able to reschedule our Touhou panel to a more appropriate time. Rope Bondage was also quite good.
- Photoshoots: The Gaylord is always an excellent forum for photoshoots. Even without the gazebo (more on this in a minute....), the Gaylord and surrounding areas have many beautiful spots for photoshoots.

Cons:
- Getting the Gazebo back: If the consensus on the web is true and we only got the gazebo back because some big name cosplayer pitched seven kinds of childish temper tantrum, than shame on her for doing so, and shame on Katsucon for panicking over it. Yes, the gazebo is important to many of us (I still remember taking the "Arcana" shots for the Persona group back in 2011), but as stated above, there are many, many other places for us to have our shoots, several of which are superior to the gazebo. If Katsu wanted the gazebo back, they should have done so for everyone, not because some person threw a fit.

- The formal dance and dance lessons: Listen up, Katsu.
* The dance lessons were poorly run. Only one dance was taught. While some of the things that were done were good, such as splitting up the class by experience, there wasn't enough follow-through on these. Also, the teacher made a.....questionable comment w/r/t transgendered people. I don't think she meant to offend, but she should have chosen a different way to say "hey, men, some of you should try learning the woman's part, since we have more men than women for once".
Next time around, more dances should be taught. Teach the basics for three or four dances rather than digging too deeply into one. And perhaps the con should consider offering beginner and intermediate instruction if they want to try getting more in-depth instruction out there.
* The dance itself was AWFUL. This was the worst dance I've seen since Katsucon 2009. The lessons only taught the waltz, and only one or two waltzes were played. Worse, most of the music was not anime-inspired at all, but rather kind of oldish pieces. Much of the music was undancable - basic 4/4 with no real rhythm to it. This makes things very difficult - and boring - for the beginners in the crowd, and I had problems with a lot of the music as well.

- Elevators. It is time for Katsucon to do what ACen does and post a couple of people at the Lobby/Atrium/2F elevator banks in order to keep traffic moving and to prevent people from riding the elevators up and down just one floor.

Like I said, I had a great con. I met many awesome people, and got to hang out with old friends, so alls to the good anyway. And honestly, it is the people who are the most important.

See you next year.
I don't really care if a "Big Name Cosplayer" got that space back for us or not. It helps to have a voice when the rest of society looks down upon you and you had hostile and unprofessional BBYO Staff making the convention a living hell for us. Whoever got the gazebo back for us deserves our gratitude.

While we are at it, we should also start writing letters to the BBYO and express our frustration and our anger for how they treated us.
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Unread 02-18-2013, 10:39 PM   #22
errido
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Mostly the con was a great experience, except that I didn't get to use my badge at all.....
I was expecting some sort of timeline to keep track of events and panels, but I didn't find one in the bag that came with the badge. Was it supposed to? Without that I really wasn't interested in putting efforts to check every single panel for date and time.

In addition, because of the BBOY convention that was going on, sometimes the hallway would be blocked, as well as the hall to the garage. It was somewhat inconvenient because it was cold and raining, and I was in full costume and make-up. I wasn't very happy about that.
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Unread 02-18-2013, 10:45 PM   #23
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I was expecting some sort of timeline to keep track of events and panels, but I didn't find one in the bag that came with the badge. Was it supposed to? Without that I really wasn't interested in putting efforts to check every single panel for date and time.
If you are referring to the schedule, I believe the piece of paper was tucked inside the Katsucon booklet; it's possible that someone might have missed putting one in yours if you still can't find it. The schedule was also displayed on the hotel's many kiosks and electronic directories.
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Unread 02-18-2013, 10:56 PM   #24
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Flat out, BBYO made things very hard for me and my Wife. Blocking whole sections, the shoving, pushing and derogatory remarks about Katsucon Attendees was completely unacceptable. I had several pleasant interactions with BBYO Attendees, but the majority of my interactions were unpleasant. Glad they never put their hands on me. There should have been Law Enforcement here at Katsucon.
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Unread 02-19-2013, 02:47 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by Dire Wolf 1984 View Post
Flat out, BBYO made things very hard for me and my Wife. Blocking whole sections, the shoving, pushing and derogatory remarks about Katsucon Attendees was completely unacceptable. I had several pleasant interactions with BBYO Attendees, but the majority of my interactions were unpleasant. Glad they never put their hands on me. There should have been Law Enforcement here at Katsucon.
I actually had a physical altercation when a BBYO staffer physically pushed me out of the way during one of the "Clear the hall" incidents. But instead of physically retaliating, I got into a verbal argument with him long enough to note his name and badge number and also his physical appearance and the location of the security camera nearby. I then left him mid-argument to report him to not only BBYO, but to Katsucon as well. I had to fill out an incident report with Katsucon, and again with BBYO. The security camera backed up my side of the story and I left completely satisfied that things would end pretty badly for that BBYO staffer.
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Unread 02-19-2013, 09:14 AM   #26
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That Nazi guy disturbed me. I'm Jewish, but not all that religious and he scared me.

Anyway.

Not a big variety in panels. Guests all being booked at the same time. No flash photography allowed in the Atrium (? was this new ?) I was a little disappointed in the artists alley, and the art show auction.

The dealers room was good though, aside from the Nazi guy.

I also want to make clear that I wasn't in the greatest of moods this Katsucon, so that may have put a damper on my con as well. The double strict double booking bothered me. I don't mind double booking in general, but the strict rules against using certain parts of a PUBLIC AREA really angered me. A heads up would have been nice as well. I know this isn't Katsu's fault, but the Gaylord could have at least told Katsu about it so Katsu could have notified us.

Will I return next year? Maybe. I wish Katsu would release their schedule a little earlier so I could determine if I really want to go or not :/
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Unread 02-19-2013, 10:19 AM   #27
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This was my 10th Katsu and easily the worst one since 2009. I'm done with the con, and as I've said elsewhere, anime cons in general.
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Unread 02-19-2013, 12:42 PM   #28
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Get a guidebook app for next year. I want to use my technology. AUSA even had one and they're a smaller convention.

A little more variety in the panels would be nice, although I did like the diversity in the 18+ panels this year.

I know we're human and can't be perfect and know everything at all times, but maybe you should tell and show all your volunteers where things are. Almost every time I asked a staff member about where something was they didn't know and guessed.

Time management. Katsucon, please get on this. When you say something will start at 6, make sure it's ready by 6, not 40 minutes later.
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Unread 02-19-2013, 01:05 PM   #29
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For those wanting a digital schedule: THERE WAS ONE.

There were several places on the paper schedules that had a QR code to scan. This loaded up a digital schedule that you could browse and (if you signed up) could mark what events you wanted to attend. This meant you could press the "My schedule" button and see just those panels you marked.

Not only were times posted, but a drop down button let you view the description if there was one.
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Unread 02-19-2013, 02:04 PM   #30
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[quote=CassieKitten;4612479]
However, there were a couple things that bothered me in particular about the con, mostly on Friday. The Formal Ball lessons were great. Honestly, I think starting slow and dividing up the class was a good idea to get the concepts down, though only teaching one dance rather limited the options. The actual Formal Ball...was not danceable at all. Even having attended dance lessons in previous years, at least 75% of the music just was not something you could actually formal dance to. This issue was compounded by the fact we only learned the waltz. There were literally only two waltzes played in the time I was there, which was for most of it. In addition, the playlist was hardly any anime/video game music at all. One of the people I was with put it best, that it was basically the top 50 of 30 years ago. I don't come to an anime con's formal ball to enjoy a middle school dance, I go to have fun with formal dance to tunes I recognize from anime or video games.
QUOTE]



I just wanted to note a couple of things here. We appreciate you attending the ball and your feedback and really do try to make it better each year. I am glad you enjoyed the dance lessons. We did hope to teach a few different styles however there just wasn't enough time. With so many people attending and the experience level it's easiest to stick to one thing in the time span we were given.

As for the ball itself, around 40% of the music style played were waltzes. We were actually given music by the instructors from this year, and previous years, to play based on what they would primarily be teaching in the dance lessons. I think the problem was that some of the music was just hard to recognize as a waltz, which we will definitely work on fixing for next year.

Also around 85% of the music was anime/game related, with around 10% being 'geek culture' related, and the other 5% being straight classical/formal music, and the last song thrown in because we knew it would be a crowd pleaser, and it was. It may be that you didn't recognize a lot of the music as it might night have been from something you were familiar with. The only thing I can recommend is to make suggestions because we do play requests as long as they are something that can be danced too fairly easily.

While it is a formal ball our goal is for everyone to have fun and cater to the majority. We do play a lot of formal stuff but it is an anime con and we don't want to be too stuffy.

Also the issue with the water stations - the gaylord does not permit water stations to be inside of the main ballrooms (at least that is what I have been told by their staff). We had the gaylord staff fill up all the stations in the hallway 30 minutes prior to the event. Next year we will try and work on having them moved closer.

-Formal Ball Staff
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