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Eurofurence 26 — "Welcome to Tortuga"
Estrel Congress Center Berlin
July 28 – August 1, 2021
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Author Topic: Official Statement Regarding the Policy Debate on Twitter  (Read 32971 times)

ScritchWuff

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Re: Official Statement Regarding the Policy Debate on Twitter
« Reply #45 on: 11.06.2015, 10:56:56 »

(Edit: This took a long time to write, so while I typed this, about 10 other replies have been posted. That means, this reply is completely ignorant of them. Please keep that in mind when reading.)

Thank your for both your original statement and this reply.  It clarifies most of the questions I had after seeing my Twitter timeline explode with "ZOMG fursecution!" posts.  It's pretty clear that this whole blow up is really not much more than a good old-fashioned Internet flame war.  It reminds me of the shitstorms they had constantly on alt.fan.furry on Usenet.  And it really turns out to be blown out of all proportion.   I know some German, though I'm far from fluent.  I think "Massenverblödungswaffen" describes Twitter all too well.  (I LOVE that particular word!)  I'm glad I held off from the Twitter lynch mob that unfortunately formed over this issue.  I swear social media is more and more becoming a channel for organizing angry mobs.  :P

For the record, I'm a babyfur.  I often host cub room parties with my friends at Rainfurrest, Further Confusion, and sometimes other cons.  We're generally pretty harmless, which I'm sure you already know. We don't bite.. We just nip at your heels.  ;D

I empathize with Eurofurence's staff.  What I have read between the lines here (and of course I may be mistaken) is that you all have to deal with a rather high strung hotel, and end up walking a fine line to keep the management happy with or at least tolerant of furries so you don't lose the venue next year.  I also can see where the hotel is coming from.  They have to turn a profit the other 51 weeks when EF is not there, and if they have a certain "upscale" business-friendly image they are trying to portray, they might not want word getting out that their hotel is not a good place to do business because they have people wandering around freaking out customers and partners by their appearance.  Doesn't matter whether such a view is fair or not.  Life's unfair, and people are simply that way, and the hotel needs to keep potential customers happy.  No hotel, no EF.  Enough said.

I also appreciate that convention staff work really hard to make thing happen, for no payment, so everyone else can have a good time.  It really can be a thankless job, and want to say "Danke Schön!"  Seriously, thank you. 

Ok, brown-nosing, aside, here's what I understand to be the case, using myself as an example:

No one is going to kick me out of the con or give me trouble if I go in the public areas in something like, say, a BunnyWarez fox kigu, or really any animal/furry themed kigu within reason.  Maybe I'm mistaken, but to me it seems those types of "pajamas" are really more like an open-face fursuit than PJ's.   And they're really cool to wear around con-space, babyfur or not. :)  IMO they fit nicely with the concept of a furry con in general.  Context: The reason I ask this is I saw in an LJ post that one fur mentioned that a statement had been made to the effect that pajamas were banned and then interpolated that such a ban must extend to kigus.  Just asking to clarify since I rather doubt that to be the case.

On the subject of pajamas, one clarification in language is in order.  The term "onesie" has a different meaning in the U.S. and the U.K., from what I've been able to gather.  What I've seen described as a onesie on this forum is what we in the U.S. call a "footed sleeper" or a "sleeper" if no feet.  In the U.S., a "onesie" refers to an article of infant clothing like a T-shirt with snaps on that go around the crotch to cover up a diaper.  Just figured it was worth noting.

I assume from what I've read that the wearing of a sleeper or onsie (U.S. or U.K. meaning) that is excessively "babyish" is discouraged in public.  I have no issue personally either way, and here's a little secret:  A lot of us babyfurs also frown on that in public as well.  Most of us really don't want to weird out other hotel guests as it can cast our community in a bad light as well.  Then again, there are others that don't care about that.  :(

I'm guessing I wouldn't be bothered about wearing your typical "Marci" babyfur badge, even if it showed a clean diaper.  An example of the character type would be Lil' Sneezer from Tiny Toons.  On the other hand, there are certain earth tone colors, which when applied to certain areas of a babyfur badge, immediately transform it from "cute" to "gross". I think you get the picture.  :-\  Like I said, I'd be surprised to be bothered over 95% of "Marci" type badges, diaper or not.  But maybe I'm mistaken.

That's my main questions.  I will say this.  Some babyfurs are saying they'll boycott EF.. All the best to them, but they don't speak for all of us any more that I do.  I won't be going to EF this year, unfortunately, since it's a LONG trip from New Mexico, and I'm all out of vacation.  It's on my bucket list, though, one of these years, if I can get the time off to do it.

Now let's see if I get lynched.  Wonder what the babyfur word is for "Uncle Tom". :)
 #p
Cheers!
-ScritchWuff
P.S.  Sven, your name is familiar to me.  Don't know if you remember me but IIRC we were one or two mailing lists together way back in the 90s. It's been a LONG time, though. :)
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Dhary Montecore

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Re: Official Statement Regarding the Policy Debate on Twitter
« Reply #46 on: 11.06.2015, 11:54:40 »

For the record, I'm a babyfur.  I often host cub room parties with my friends at Rainfurrest, Further Confusion, and sometimes other cons.  We're generally pretty harmless, which I'm sure you already know. We don't bite.. We just nip at your heels.  ;D

Yepp, we know. Due to my position I come in contact with almost everything going on at our conventions and from the "on-site problem-level" babyfur parties are MUCH less of a problem than the average get-pissed-or-die room party. As you say yourself, this is only about the public appearance (not talking about damage to hotel rooms, but we get that from all kinds of room parties.)


I empathize with Eurofurence's staff.  What I have read between the lines here (and of course I may be mistaken) is that you all have to deal with a rather high strung hotel, and end up walking a fine line to keep the management happy with or at least tolerant of furries so you don't lose the venue next year.  I also can see where the hotel is coming from.  They have to turn a profit the other 51 weeks when EF is not there, and if they have a certain "upscale" business-friendly image they are trying to portray, they might not want word getting out that their hotel is not a good place to do business because they have people wandering around freaking out customers and partners by their appearance.  Doesn't matter whether such a view is fair or not.  Life's unfair, and people are simply that way, and the hotel needs to keep potential customers happy.  No hotel, no EF.  Enough said.

I also appreciate that convention staff work really hard to make thing happen, for no payment, so everyone else can have a good time.  It really can be a thankless job, and want to say "Danke Schön!"  Seriously, thank you. 

Thank you! Of course it is always nice to feel appreciated, but these days a simple thank you comes a long way. And yes, you describe the problem spot on. Furry conventions are polarising and powerful in the reactions they can spark. I've seen high ranked hotel staff dance with our fursuiters and have the time of their life but we've had to defend the con against Nazi scum also. It all comes down to what we represent in public. I (and most if not all of our staff) do NOT judge what adult people to in consent in the privacy of their hotelroom as long as it's legal and they don't damage the hotel property.


Ok, brown-nosing, aside, here's what I understand to be the case, using myself as an example:

No one is going to kick me out of the con or give me trouble if I go in the public areas in something like, say, a BunnyWarez fox kigu, or really any animal/furry themed kigu within reason.  Maybe I'm mistaken, but to me it seems those types of "pajamas" are really more like an open-face fursuit than PJ's.   And they're really cool to wear around con-space, babyfur or not. :)  IMO they fit nicely with the concept of a furry con in general.  Context: The reason I ask this is I saw in an LJ post that one fur mentioned that a statement had been made to the effect that pajamas were banned and then interpolated that such a ban must extend to kigus.  Just asking to clarify since I rather doubt that to be the case.

On the subject of pajamas, one clarification in language is in order.  The term "onesie" has a different meaning in the U.S. and the U.K., from what I've been able to gather.  What I've seen described as a onesie on this forum is what we in the U.S. call a "footed sleeper" or a "sleeper" if no feet.  In the U.S., a "onesie" refers to an article of infant clothing like a T-shirt with snaps on that go around the crotch to cover up a diaper.  Just figured it was worth noting.

I assume from what I've read that the wearing of a sleeper or onsie (U.S. or U.K. meaning) that is excessively "babyish" is discouraged in public.  I have no issue personally either way, and here's a little secret:  A lot of us babyfurs also frown on that in public as well.  Most of us really don't want to weird out other hotel guests as it can cast our community in a bad light as well.  Then again, there are others that don't care about that.  :(

There is no and has never been a ban on Kigus! I'll try to explain the rules in more detail: Kigus (as long as you wear something underneath ;P) are certainly not a normal attire in a four star hotel lobby, but they are close enough to the topic and they add to the colourful atmosphere. Most important: Normal people can integrate that image in the context of the general con easily. Yes, you might get the occasional funny look and kigus don't have access to the fursuit lounge simply as they do not qualify/require such intense care. But they are NOT banned, not even from public spaces. Onesies however are something we do not want to see in public, as an adult person in a baby stile onesie is (sorry for using this in lack of a different word) outright creepy to a uninvolved person and even most of the attendees.

The very basic rule should solve it all: If your outfit does fit the general context of the con or the theme and it doesn't creep out more than a few soap-box-boys it is fine. It's common sense, really.

Onesies, bibs, pacifiers or other obviously baby-related stuff is definitely not okay in public. Kigus or a decent badge depicting a babyfur-character are fine. Again it's common sense and we have to ask certain badges to be removed (obviously full diapers, offensive content, etc). Important point here though: EF Security does not, has never and will never confiscate badges or other property of anyone unless in duty-of-care! If someone takes a badge away from you and claims to be security, report it to staff immediately. This is theft!

And because that has been asked before: Wearing a diaper NOT visible under your clothing is fine as long as it doesn't smell. Wearing one above your clothing is an absolute no-go in public. (Yes that includes the hotel corridors). Oh and you do NOT have to inform security or seek permission if you have to wear one for medical reasons. We understand that this is a highly sensitive matter and it is nothing of our business! 


That's my main questions.  I will say this.  Some babyfurs are saying they'll boycott EF.. All the best to them, but they don't speak for all of us any more that I do.  I won't be going to EF this year, unfortunately, since it's a LONG trip from New Mexico, and I'm all out of vacation.  It's on my bucket list, though, one of these years, if I can get the time off to do it.

It is regrettable that you can't make it this year! As for the others: We obviously see when people cancel and believe me, this is not a problem. I think once all the rumours and the false information about bans and rules have been clarified things will look quite different even to these few that pondered cancelling. :3
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kooriki

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Re: Official Statement Regarding the Policy Debate on Twitter
« Reply #47 on: 11.06.2015, 16:26:50 »

Eh, No need for a public apology - It's already out in the open that this event and organizers outright don't like babyfurs. It's mentioned in every "apology" line how creeped out the organizers are by onesies, pacifiers, people with teddy bears etc. We get it - You dislike them and don't want them around, but won't (and can't) stop people from doing whatever they want in their own rooms. It's not worth effort discussing why a dog collar isn't fetish attire and why a bib is - Whoever makes the con makes the rules. I do wish however that the organizers would stop apologizing because they keep using these apologies as a way to sneak in more and more ways to insult babyfurs.

Thanks to all the volunteers who put in their time to help organize these massive events. They put in tons of effort to make these events as fun and smooth as possible for everyone all without any pay. And sadly in the PR dept you get what you pay for.
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Cheetah

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Re: Official Statement Regarding the Policy Debate on Twitter
« Reply #48 on: 11.06.2015, 17:25:04 »

You [...] won't (and can't) stop people from doing whatever they want in their own rooms.

And to make that perfectly clear: We don't intend to - with the exception of complaints, of course.
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Cheetah

Fineas

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Re: Official Statement Regarding the Policy Debate on Twitter
« Reply #49 on: 11.06.2015, 17:38:58 »

Eh, No need for a public apology

Ehm... Ok nice.

- It's already out in the open that this event and organizers outright don't like babyfurs. It's mentioned in every "apology" line how creeped out the organizers are by onesies, pacifiers, people with teddy bears etc. We get it - You dislike them and don't want them around,...

That is simply untrue. I can not speak for the whole staff, but our stance which we do all support is that everyone that identifies with the furry fandom is wholly welcome. Even if you do not call yourself furry. As long as you behave to the rules that where set to protect your from harm and at large to protect the host from receiving publicity damage, everyone is welcome.

...but won't (and can't) stop people from doing whatever they want in their own rooms.

Which is also untrue because:
1) EF will permit you to do anything you like in your room, as long as

2a) You do not break the law.
2b) As you do not cause harm to hotel property or break other hotel house rules.
2c) Cause harm to other attendees.
(EF security will not check every room, hotel house keeping however will and will notify the hotel and in a lot of cases notify EF about it)

It's not worth effort discussing why a dog collar isn't fetish attire and why a bib is - Whoever makes the con makes the rules. I do wish however that the organizers would stop apologizing because they keep using these apologies as a way to sneak in more and more ways to insult babyfurs.

Sorry, but I miss the reasoning in that. Why does apologizing for the social media mistake insult babyfurs?
The thing I see happening is that every-single-thing is put under a magnifying glass, taken apart, blown out of proportions and fed to the discussion at large.

Yesterday evening someone suddenly accused EF of hating American attendees. Completely ignoring that Uncle Kage and 2 go out of their way to come back each year and leave great comments about EF.

http://en.wikifur.com/wiki/Eurofurence#Quotes_and_trivia

If I'm not mistaking Sir Conway is still befriended by Andre, the German barkeeper from Suhl where EF previously had it's convention.

Just look at this hearth warming reunion:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xE01WOiggmg

Thanks to all the volunteers who put in their time to help organize these massive events. They put in tons of effort to make these events as fun and smooth as possible for everyone all without any pay.

Thank you very much.

And sadly in the PR dept you get what you pay for.

I feel sorry you feel that way, but I guess that can not be helped.
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Ralphie Raccoon

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Re: Official Statement Regarding the Policy Debate on Twitter
« Reply #50 on: 11.06.2015, 18:50:00 »

So, just to make this clear, inferring from what Dhary has said, the answer to those questions that I asked Cheetah that he didn't answer, is NO to all of them. Which is fine. I'll tell my babyfur friends that. Some of them might not like it, but hey, that's the rules.

As Dhary said, it might be an official guideline next year, which I think would be helpful.

I would say one more thing, and before I say it, I would like to clarify that I do not wish to understate or denigrate the 1000's of hours that volunteers put in to CFz, EF and the many other conventions around the world. You guys do a fantastic job. However, I don't think the argument that "A voluntary organisation can't be held to the same standards as a commercial one" when it comes to professional conduct during PR holds water. If I was a volunteer for the Red Cross, or MSF, and I did something negative while representing the organisation (so the organisation's twitter feed, not my private feed), I would be rightly called out on it, same as a commercial company. It doesn't matter if I'm being paid or not, if I'm representing an organisation I am held to the same professional standards.

But from what I understand, EF has already made a public apology and personal apologies to those who were initially affected. Which I think is probably what most other organisations would do anyway (with also perhaps some small compensation, but I can appreciate that might want to be withheld from some considering their response was just as bad, if not worse).

So in summary, I don't think you can expect to be held less accountable just because you are volunteers, but for the most part your response is probably what you would expect from any organisation, commercial or voluntary.  

Edit: I just had a thought. It might be worth putting up the official complaints procedure on the main website, to make it more visible. Some of the more aggressive responses may have been because some furs didn't know that such a procedure existed, and saw such responses as the only way of recompense.
« Last Edit: 11.06.2015, 19:39:46 by Ralphie Raccoon »
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Eisfuchs

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Re: Official Statement Regarding the Policy Debate on Twitter
« Reply #51 on: 11.06.2015, 20:41:04 »

Edit: I just had a thought. It might be worth putting up the official complaints procedure on the main website, to make it more visible. Some of the more aggressive responses may have been because some furs didn't know that such a procedure existed, and saw such responses as the only way of recompense.
Highly doubtful. Stomping your foot on public "social" media is much more popular than actually filing a constructive complaint.

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Ghostbear

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Re: Official Statement Regarding the Policy Debate on Twitter
« Reply #52 on: 11.06.2015, 20:54:38 »

There is no and has never been a ban on Kigus! I'll try to explain the rules in more detail: Kigus (as long as you wear something underneath ;P) are certainly not a normal attire in a four star hotel lobby, but they are close enough to the topic and they add to the colourful atmosphere. Most important: Normal people can integrate that image in the context of the general con easily. Yes, you might get the occasional funny look and kigus don't have access to the fursuit lounge simply as they do not qualify/require such intense care. But they are NOT banned, not even from public spaces. Onesies however are something we do not want to see in public, as an adult person in a baby stile onesie is (sorry for using this in lack of a different word) outright creepy to a uninvolved person and even most of the attendees.

The very basic rule should solve it all: If your outfit does fit the general context of the con or the theme and it doesn't creep out more than a few soap-box-boys it is fine. It's common sense, really.

Onesies, bibs, pacifiers or other obviously baby-related stuff is definitely not okay in public. Kigus or a decent badge depicting a babyfur-character are fine. Again it's common sense and we have to ask certain badges to be removed (obviously full diapers, offensive content, etc). Important point here though: EF Security does not, has never and will never confiscate badges or other property of anyone unless in duty-of-care! If someone takes a badge away from you and claims to be security, report it to staff immediately. This is theft!

And because that has been asked before: Wearing a diaper NOT visible under your clothing is fine as long as it doesn't smell. Wearing one above your clothing is an absolute no-go in public. (Yes that includes the hotel corridors). Oh and you do NOT have to inform security or seek permission if you have to wear one for medical reasons. We understand that this is a highly sensitive matter and it is nothing of our business!
Thank you for clearing this up, Dhary. Of course I can only speak for myself, but as a cub I'm actually pretty fine with that.
I deliberately stayed out of that ruckus and fuss that happened during the last couple of days (in fact I just ducked and ran for cover once insults started flying and refused to come out of my pillow fort bomb shelter for a few days o.o') and decided to ask on a later point of time, when things would have calmed down again and everybody was a bit less aggravated. But seeing you now answering my unspoken questions, thank you.
It's pretty much how I, as a cub, would have behaved anyway, even with more liberal rules.
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Dhary Montecore

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Re: Official Statement Regarding the Policy Debate on Twitter
« Reply #53 on: 11.06.2015, 22:32:48 »

As Dhary said, it might be an official guideline next year, which I think would be helpful.

Not next year. THIS year. Attendees ask, we deliver. :3
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VulpesRex

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Re: Official Statement Regarding the Policy Debate on Twitter
« Reply #54 on: 14.06.2015, 00:07:33 »

During both this incident and the incident around EF's refusal to refund a membership for a dealer in January, several members of the EF staff made comments on their (yes, personal, but very much public and identified as EF staff) Twitter accounts to leave the impression that Americans are unwelcome at Eurofurence. This includes one of the members of the EF Board of Directors.

Do the other members of the Board share this anti-American sentiment? Could this be clarified? I have seen that American visitors to EF are no insignificant number, based on the nosecount page.

This American attendee (EF 10) and Staff Member (EF 20) has never been made to feel unwelcome at Eurofurence.



   As an American attendee of the last 6 EFs - one who sn't a staff member, or a volunteer, or has any other association with EF where any of the staff might treat me differently than they would any other attendee - I heartily concur with Giza, and state that I have NEVER been made to feel unwelcome at EF, either by staff, by other attendees, or by the hotels which have hosted the event.

   And this covers ALL the people of various european nationalities whom I have had the pleasure of encountering and the privilege of meeting at EuroFURence, NOT just the Germans.

   ...And all of the other American attendees who have attended - in many cases, over multiple years - and with whom I have spoken, have agreed with me.
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Zefiro

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Re: Official Statement Regarding the Policy Debate on Twitter
« Reply #55 on: 15.06.2015, 00:52:35 »

If I was a volunteer for the Red Cross, or MSF, and I did something negative while representing the organisation (so the organisation's twitter feed, not my private feed), I would be rightly called out on it, same as a commercial company.
Which is why the official Twitter account has apologized and is under closer internal scrutinity now.
However one account which has been cited quite often (apart from Cheetah's) is the private (previously unprotected) account of doco. Which does not, nor has ever claimed to speak for Eurofurence.

*purrrr*
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Macrowolf

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Re: Official Statement Regarding the Policy Debate on Twitter
« Reply #56 on: 19.06.2015, 23:33:19 »

The issue isn't so much the convention policies as it is the bullying culture that apparently exists in Eurofurence.  For all of the good things that I've heard of this convention from Kage, 2, and others about how friendly the Germans are, I'm not seeing that here.  Doco, Cheetah and whoever made the tweets on the official account will ultimately be judged on their conduct by the furry fandom, for better or worse.  However for an organization to make an emphatic endorsement of bullying is never on anywhere, but especially in the furry fandom given it's history.  An unequivocal apology on behalf of all of those involved with the organization, volunteer or chairman, was what was needed here.  Instead, what we see is a statement of regret followed by a blaming the victim rant and endorsement of the bullying by staff and volunteers.  Now serious doubts are raised over the way the convention is run, and the culture instilled in it by the leadership.  The fact that Cheetah is having to moderate posts from his own staff in this thread is added cause for concern.  If you were provoked, it is fine to think that and possibly share it with close friends you trust.  However the face of the con you put to the community has to be one of the highest standards that rejects any bullying, no matter who started it or how heated it got.  Kage and the AC staff understand this very well, but apparently Cheetah does not.

You are measuring a volunteer organisation by commercial standards. This does not work. And yes, I am talking about the agitators. Those that sparked the entire drama by very personal and insulting tweets. I do NOT talk about the babyfur community or those (more than 80%) of the participants of the conversations that argued in a calm and respectable manner. This entire escalation is based on a few known agitators and the very emotional and unprofessional response they got. Our response is not to be excused but so are the original tweets.

Again, we are a volunteer organisation, we are NOT paid, we pay ourselves. So please do not try to force a convention organisation into a commercial companies frame.

Let's take a look at this from another all volunteer organization, SoFurry.  There was a somewhat similar incident a few years ago where a member was insulted by an admin charged with helping users though any site issues.  This admin had their credentials stripped.  Now SoFurry is a site that nobody pays for unless they either advertise or donate, yet it is run with highest standards.  Everyone pays however to go to Eurofurence, both to the convention itself and in travel expenses that can amount to thousands of Euros depending on where they are coming from.  While we are mindful of the fact that it's all volunteers and will try to give you a break if some things don't go right at the con, it is within the rights of the community to expect higher standards in terms of your conduct.  Yes, that means commercial standards.

I'm reminded of the old saying if you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.  You won't be judged when things are right, but rather when things go wrong and how you handle them.  Handle them with high standards and that's when attendees will forgive the things that don't work out, and will even be motivated to give back to the convention, sponsor, possibly volunteer.  Handle them poorly, and that's when perspective attendees stay away.  If you all are happy at 2000 attendees, keep doing what you're doing, because you're putting off anyone else from going.  If however you want the con to keep growing, there needs to be a major rethink of that statement and how all of the staff are presenting themselves to the fandom.

And to Cheetah, locking your account doesn't shield you from harassment and in fact only makes you look worse.  The only things we have to go by are these "spun" accounts of what was said which make you look very bad indeed.  If what you are claiming is indeed true, that you were horribly provoked into making those tweets, unlock your account.  If doco has any interest in redeeming himself, he should do likewise.  Let the community see the conversation in it's entirety and then decide.
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o'wolf

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Re: Official Statement Regarding the Policy Debate on Twitter
« Reply #57 on: 20.06.2015, 00:35:37 »

Moderator's hat off

Doco, Cheetah and whoever made the tweets on the official account

For the record, Doco does not have access to the official Eurofurence account and never had.

Quote
However for an organization to make an emphatic endorsement of bullying

We don't endorse bullying.

Quote
An unequivocal apology on behalf of all of those involved with the organization, volunteer or chairman, was what
was needed here.

Out of curiosity, what makes you think that you are entitled to demand such a thing?

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Instead, what we see is a statement of regret followed by a blaming the victim rant and endorsement of the bullying by staff and volunteers.

That's probably what you saw, but certainly not anyone here intended to communicate. What exactly do you interpret as an "endorsement of bullying"?

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The fact that Cheetah is having to moderate posts from his own staff in this thread

I'm moderating this thread, not Cheetah.

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Let's take a look at this from another all volunteer organization, SoFurry.

I'm sorry, that's a strawman argument. How SoFurry runs their site is entirely their business.

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Everyone pays however to go to Eurofurence, both to the convention itself and in travel expenses that can amount to thousands of Euros depending on where they are coming from.

Have you? Personally? I mean, if not, how is that your concern?

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It is within the rights of the community to expect higher standards in terms of your conduct.  Yes, that means commercial standards.

It's within the rights of the (prospective) attendees. And I think your are mixing up commercial and moral standards. Or rather: you are talking about etiquette. But what etiquette anyway? German? British? French? Dutch? Danish? American? And if American: West Coast, East Coast, Midwest, Southern? If West Coast: Bay Area, LA, CA Central Valley, Portland, Seattle? You know, there are differences in culture, and Continental European culture is way more direct ("brutally honest") than American culture. Given that the selectively quoted personal Twitter statements that caused the uproar were between Germans and Scandinavians, which are both known for their culture of, um, very direct communication, I have the impression that we are dealing a cultural misunderstanding here. At least to a certain degree.

Granted, the commercial standards you are talking about come into play with publicly traded American or British companies, the term is "business ethics". Which are rather strict and enforced by the respective authorities (the SEC in America). In my opinion, a lot of that is quite some nonsense. But in the end, it is part of a contract between a company and their shareholders. Privately held companies can pretty much do what they want, within the limits of the law, of course. Eurofurence e.V., as the legal entity responsible the convention, is governed by its members, currently fourty-something volunteers that are mostly active and former members of staff. It is a not-for-profit organization. The policies are set at the yearly general meeting of the organization in a democratic way. Whether we do or do not adopt some kind of business or community ethics guidelines is up to the attendees of the general meeting. We plan to discuss that topic at the next meeting, indeed.

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If you all are happy at 2000 attendees, keep doing what you're doing, because you're putting off anyone else from going.

"Anyone"? You know, I can perfectly understand if the whole issue gives you the impression that Eurofurence is not an event you'd enjoy. Which is a pity, as Eurofurence is a great event and a lot of fun, regardless the occasional conflict that may arise online.
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Is it that things really change? Or does the outside rearrange?
Is perception genuine? Or does truth lie deep beneath the skin?
— Heather Alexander, Blood and Passion

Cheetah

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Re: Official Statement Regarding the Policy Debate on Twitter
« Reply #58 on: 20.06.2015, 10:52:40 »

The issue isn't so much the convention policies as it is the bullying culture that apparently exists in Eurofurence.

I'm sorry we made the wrong impression. But I can assure you that we do not have a "bullying culture" in Eurofurence. The discussion we're having here is really about half a dozen tweets and pretending that's all we are. And as I said earlier, the amount of hate speech that we got in return made our staff's mistakes (including mine) pale in comparison.

Let's take everything else we do back into consideration. All the good stuff which we have been doing for over 20 years, and still do. Do you know of any concrete examples of bullying that actually happened, in real life? And by that I don't mean any anecdotal disagreement between security and any individual, but, actual bullying. The thing you claim?

The feedback forum goes back to 2007 or so, and as you can see, people are not reluctant when it comes to criticism, and we're quite open to receiving it and discussing it in public. If we had a "bullying culture" that should be quite obvious from the feedback we're getting, shouldn't it?

Believe me, I've gotten a lot of criticism lately, and I'm learning from it. But a couple of personal tweets between individuals isn't all that defines Eurofurence, and I'm not going to pretend it is for the sake of a made-up debate.

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And to Cheetah, locking your account doesn't shield you from harassment and in fact only makes you look worse.

That was to stop Sibe's cronies *actually* bullying me, and I'm not talking about a handfull of misguided venting, but a week of one-mention-per-second hammering and posting "parody" pictures of me in diapers and in nazi uniform. Let's not ignore that fact.
« Last Edit: 20.06.2015, 22:28:23 by Cheetah »
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yours,

Cheetah

kooriki

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Re: Official Statement Regarding the Policy Debate on Twitter
« Reply #59 on: 21.06.2015, 23:42:26 »

Such a shame the way this all played out. I can agree that wearing diapers in the open would be a good line to draw, but the staff have decided to go the whole way and ban ALL clothing/gear/teddybears/some art - Anything that could be taken as ageplay. Babyfurs need to understand that Eurofurence is a more socially conservative furry con. The brutal comments said against ageplayers in heat by a few staffers/higher ups should not be taken as official statements from Eurofurence, just as the over-the-top statements from one or two babyfurs do not represent the larger babyfur/ageplay community. (And I suspect there have been agent provocateurs on both sides.)

Lets be clear - everyone knows babyfurs aren't walking around messing their diapers openly at cons. I've never met a person that had first-hand witnessed that. And if anyone does it is their responsibility to call that person out (Especially if you're a babyfur yourself.) Is ageplay a fetish? Not to most ageplayers, but to those on the outside its easy to see why they think that - The general public thinks of furries and the fandom as a strange fetish as well. Eurofurence gets to ban whatever they want for their event, they have singled out ageplay and BDSM, so leave the teddy bears and leashes at home for this one.
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