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Author Topic: Lines on Day 0  (Read 19733 times)

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Lucifargundam

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Re: Lines on Day 0
« Reply #60 on: May 29, 2012, 01:19:22 AM »

I wish distributing passes would be faster.... like popping cash out of a atm machine...
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Re: Lines on Day 0
« Reply #61 on: May 29, 2012, 03:32:44 PM »

I appreciate how understanding you guys are! Your input is definitely valued and we are taking time to read these! Our reg staff this year easily worked a LOT more hours than the 24 required hours for staff. We try really hard to keep everyone happy and we try our hardest to keep the lines moving. That being said, hopefully some of your ideas may be implemented!

It really touches my heart to hear that you guys are understanding of reg. :)
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Re: Lines on Day 0
« Reply #62 on: May 29, 2012, 03:38:54 PM »

If you guys need help stuffing envelopes next year, let us know.  I know the idea was shot down last year because staff members didn't want to spend the time stuffing thousands of envelopes. Based on the responses thus far, it seems as if most people would be more than happy to pay extra to have badges mailed out in advanced as opposed to waiting in line 6+ hours. You can use the extra money to feed people at "envelope stuffing parties"! I think doing a little extra work and planning far in advance would lessen the workload and stress on everyone at con.
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Re: Lines on Day 0
« Reply #63 on: May 29, 2012, 04:50:25 PM »

I’m not going to say that I am psychic but I did seem to be pretty accurate with my post here back in January. Sure computer problems and black outs helped but when got in the pre-reg on Thursday at 2:30pm and didn’t get my pass until a little after 8pm was damn glad I had a book with me.
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Re: Lines on Day 0
« Reply #64 on: May 30, 2012, 06:27:58 AM »

If you guys need help stuffing envelopes next year, let us know.  I know the idea was shot down last year because staff members didn't want to spend the time stuffing thousands of envelopes. Based on the responses thus far, it seems as if most people would be more than happy to pay extra to have badges mailed out in advanced as opposed to waiting in line 6+ hours. You can use the extra money to feed people at "envelope stuffing parties"! I think doing a little extra work and planning far in advance would lessen the workload and stress on everyone at con.

Ditto this, and I think my husband would be up for it too.  We live super close to the convention center, but we prefer to spend our limited free time focusing on large costumes rather than staff.  A day helping stuff envelopes would be something we could do though.
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Re: Lines on Day 0
« Reply #65 on: May 31, 2012, 12:13:05 PM »

I wouldn't mind stuffing envelopes either, since I live only a few miles away.

I also thought you guys did a great job with registration lines despite the power outage. Whoever began the balloon volleyball is also a genius. It's amazing what a little distraction can do. I saw at least 20 frowns turn into smiles over a something so simple.
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Re: Lines on Day 0
« Reply #66 on: May 31, 2012, 02:37:30 PM »

My cosplay group and I would be more than happy to stuff envelopes depending on the day. ^__^
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Re: Lines on Day 0
« Reply #67 on: May 31, 2012, 05:58:21 PM »

Hey guys, we will explore mailing out badges, but it is not as simple as stuffing envelopes. There is a reason for our established process. We will examine how that will fit in with mailing badges, but stuffing envelopes is not the critical factor.
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Re: Lines on Day 0
« Reply #68 on: May 31, 2012, 06:36:25 PM »

Hey guys, we will explore mailing out badges, but it is not as simple as stuffing envelopes. There is a reason for our established process. We will examine how that will fit in with mailing badges, but stuffing envelopes is not the critical factor.

Totally understand that there's more to mailing out badges (such as the risk of lost badges and minor consent forms).  However, not wanting to stuff envelopes was most common reason posted on the forums when the idea to mail badges was proposed last year.

I've been asking around to find out how other cons handle registration:

-Anime Expo does not mail badges.  What happens is when you sign up, you're given a barcode.  When you arrive at the convention center, you scan said barcode into a machine and your badge is printed out.  A registration member then calls your name and checks your ID with the badge.

-Comic-Con does not mail badges.  They do on-site pickup at the convention center and off-site pickup at different hotels.  Apparently, the process at the convention center goes much faster than off-site given the large number of computers and staff available, with attendees getting their badges in as fast as five minutes.

-Sakura Con does not mail badges.  Similar to Anime Expo, they use scanners to pull up a person's information.  I'm guessing they might have a large number of staff/volunteers because the process apparently only takes about 20 minutes.

-Wondercon does not mail badges.  You bring your confirmation letter and are given a generic badge there.  I think they actually process badges manually at this convention.  Similarly, there are a large number of volunteers.  I think you also line up based on your last name, but that's just what I remember from when I went a few years ago.  I also remember waiting less than 10 minutes once the doors opened.

In all cases, minors must bring a consent form signed by their parents.  If you want, I can ask more cons, specifically ones that mail badges (if I can find them).  I focused on these because they're mostly located in California (except Sakura Con) and hence deal with the same laws pertaining to minor consent forms.  They also deal with large numbers of attendees.

I care about improving the process for next year because my boyfriend bailed and my friends couldn't attend as a result of long registration lines.  Going to Fanime with my buddies having to wait outside made me sad.  Not having a dance partner at the ball also made me sad.  I don't want to be sad next year!
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Re: Lines on Day 0
« Reply #69 on: May 31, 2012, 07:56:36 PM »

I've been asking around to find out how other cons handle registration:
Hmm. Food for thought for me. Thanks, you rock!
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kookiekween99

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Re: Lines on Day 0
« Reply #70 on: June 01, 2012, 07:56:12 AM »

You might be able to utilize QR codes somehow to speed up the process...
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Re: Lines on Day 0
« Reply #71 on: June 01, 2012, 11:50:28 AM »

Probably - I know iPads/iPhones/Things that aren't Apple are used in lieu of cash registers in some stores, but I don't know if there's dedicated apps for admittance/events. It'd be helpful if the power blew out like it did this year, but still...
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Re: Lines on Day 0
« Reply #72 on: June 01, 2012, 12:37:55 PM »

Just as an FYI, the only major anime convention in the United States that mails out their badges (that I know of) is Anime Central.
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Re: Lines on Day 0
« Reply #73 on: June 01, 2012, 01:18:31 PM »

Just as an FYI, the only major anime convention in the United States that mails out their badges (that I know of) is Anime Central.

Then we'll be happy to see FanimeCon become the second major anime convention to mail out their badges for 2013.
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Re: Lines on Day 0
« Reply #74 on: June 01, 2012, 01:42:46 PM »

Hey guys, we will explore mailing out badges, but it is not as simple as stuffing envelopes. There is a reason for our established process. We will examine how that will fit in with mailing badges, but stuffing envelopes is not the critical factor.

Totally understand that there's more to mailing out badges (such as the risk of lost badges and minor consent forms).  However, not wanting to stuff envelopes was most common reason posted on the forums when the idea to mail badges was proposed last year.

I've been asking around to find out how other cons handle registration:

-Anime Expo does not mail badges.  What happens is when you sign up, you're given a barcode.  When you arrive at the convention center, you scan said barcode into a machine and your badge is printed out.  A registration member then calls your name and checks your ID with the badge.

-Comic-Con does not mail badges.  They do on-site pickup at the convention center and off-site pickup at different hotels.  Apparently, the process at the convention center goes much faster than off-site given the large number of computers and staff available, with attendees getting their badges in as fast as five minutes.

-Sakura Con does not mail badges.  Similar to Anime Expo, they use scanners to pull up a person's information.  I'm guessing they might have a large number of staff/volunteers because the process apparently only takes about 20 minutes.

-Wondercon does not mail badges.  You bring your confirmation letter and are given a generic badge there.  I think they actually process badges manually at this convention.  Similarly, there are a large number of volunteers.  I think you also line up based on your last name, but that's just what I remember from when I went a few years ago.  I also remember waiting less than 10 minutes once the doors opened.

In all cases, minors must bring a consent form signed by their parents.  If you want, I can ask more cons, specifically ones that mail badges (if I can find them).  I focused on these because they're mostly located in California (except Sakura Con) and hence deal with the same laws pertaining to minor consent forms.  They also deal with large numbers of attendees.

I care about improving the process for next year because my boyfriend bailed and my friends couldn't attend as a result of long registration lines.  Going to Fanime with my buddies having to wait outside made me sad.  Not having a dance partner at the ball also made me sad.  I don't want to be sad next year!

PAX mails badges by default and they have 70000 attendees.

Printing badges is fast but there's 2 problems 1) The SJCC union rules sucks so the more you have to do on-site, the more problems can occur and 2) Well it's a paper badge instead of a nice plastic badge
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Tsubasakissu

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Mailing Badges?
« Reply #75 on: November 27, 2012, 06:39:01 PM »

So, some people at Fanime, who pre-reg'd, ended up having to have a paper badge due to some mistakes. And Fanime is mailing those badges (fancy pre-reg badges from 2012) to said people, which is nice.
But if they could do this, cant we pay to have our badges mailed to us? That'd cut down on waiting in lines, said lines caused hours upon hours of waiting (some people attribute this to the generators exploding thursday, but I do not believe that it could have affected it /that/ badly. We just saw a larger increase in attendees). And Fanime grows each year, meaning next years lines may be just as unbearable. I, and probably many others, would be willing to pay a few extra dollars to have our badges shipped to us. That way we dont need to worry about getting there at 10AM on Thursday to get out of line fast enough to check into our hotels and what-not.
Anyhoot, just a suggestion. I know  a few other cons do this.

Arguments possed:
1.  People will counterfeit badges.
And? People get badges at Fanime and STILL manage to counterfeit them. Thatll always be a problem. But Im pretty sure that Fanime badges hav a special holo thats difficult to counterfeit?

2. They could lose the badge before the con.
Mailing the badges so that they arrive a week before the con could help to eliminate that issue. As long as they keep it in a good spot, that shouldnt be an issue.

3. Postage for thousands of members would be quite a bit of money.
Charging a 1 or 2 dollar fee would help to cover that.

4. They could say they lost their badge and hand the re-print to a friend.
Well, that already happens, it wouldnt be a new problem. If im not mistaken, sometimes some rovers ask for attendees to present their IDs with their badges, to make sure the names line up. (doesnt always happen, but sometimes I hear of people using other peoples badges only to have the badges revoked)


« Last Edit: November 27, 2012, 07:08:55 PM by Tsubasakissu »
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kookiekween99

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Re: Mailing Badges?
« Reply #76 on: November 28, 2012, 03:40:46 PM »

2. They could lose the badge before the con.
Mailing the badges so that they arrive a week before the con could help to eliminate that issue. As long as they keep it in a good spot, that shouldnt be an issue.

Have you ever mailed anything USPS? The delivery date doesn't neccessarily match the estimate. Also, there are a lot of international attendees, so you'd have to allow additional shipping time for them. It's not a question of the attendee losing the badge so much as the badge getting lost in the mail.

That being said, there definitely does need to be some changes to Reg in some way. I don't know what way, but the current system is obviously broken.



I wish I could be like, part-time staff. I don't want to work the whole 24 hours that's required, but I would gladly do pre-con work and/or work on Thursday. I don't even care about the cost of the badge. If my only perk was not having to stand in the main attendee pre-reg line, I would be happy. But I'm not willing to work during con because Fanime is just too damn awesome to miss.

Just a thought.
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Re: Lines on Day 0
« Reply #77 on: November 29, 2012, 12:19:49 PM »

You can volunteer on Thurs and then get your membership reimbursed:) I'm not sure how it works, but hours MAY be doubled working on Thurs.

I wish I could be like, part-time staff. I don't want to work the whole 24 hours that's required, but I would gladly do pre-con work and/or work on Thursday. I don't even care about the cost of the badge. If my only perk was not having to stand in the main attendee pre-reg line, I would be happy. But I'm not willing to work during con because Fanime is just too damn awesome to miss.

As for fixing, we are trying. With changes in the last year, both in staff and in the venue, that change may take a bit longer.

And two quick notes: Mailing out badges = more lead time to counterfeit and work out how to defeat security measures. Lost badges is not really attributed to USPS, but people losing them. While we do charge for replacement badges, its not cool to do that if USPS lost it....

<3 trying hard, hopefully improvement can be realized.
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Re: Mailing Badges?
« Reply #78 on: December 18, 2012, 11:18:36 PM »

2. They could lose the badge before the con.
Mailing the badges so that they arrive a week before the con could help to eliminate that issue. As long as they keep it in a good spot, that shouldnt be an issue.

Have you ever mailed anything USPS? The delivery date doesn't neccessarily match the estimate. Also, there are a lot of international attendees, so you'd have to allow additional shipping time for them. It's not a question of the attendee losing the badge so much as the badge getting lost in the mail.


Disclaimer: I staff in a completely different area of FanimeCon and am not involved with Registration.

Unfortunately as kookiekween99 pointed out, USPS is not an error-free system. My (not-FanimeCon) job involves customer service for an online retailer, and we have a lot of issues with USPS. The "delivery date" is just an estimate, and USPS does not offer guaranteed delivery dates. Generally it only takes 3-10 days to deliver domestic First Class Mail, but it can take much longer than that and it is not officially "lost" according to the post office until 30 days after shipment. The international time window is about double that. This also doesn't factor in random post office returns, mis-delivered mail, human error inputting addresses, etc.... there are a lot of logistical issues.

Our Registration staffers are awesome and I know they are listening to your feedback and working on the best solution given the logistics of the situation. They want to improve Reg even more than you do :)
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Re: Lines on Day 0
« Reply #79 on: January 09, 2013, 09:42:38 PM »



PAX mails badges by default and they have 70000 attendees.

Printing badges is fast but there's 2 problems 1) The SJCC union rules sucks so the more you have to do on-site, the more problems can occur and 2) Well it's a paper badge instead of a nice plastic badge

If you are going to use PAX as an example of a convention that mails their badges, you also have to understand how their system works.  I went to PAX this past year, and I have some experience with their registration issues.  PAX has a different system than any other convention I have been too, they do not count people, they count badges.  There is a finite number of badges, and when they are all sold (like this past year) there are no more.  I left my badge at home.  It was mailed out 3 months before the con, I put it in plain site so I wouldn't forget it, and well... I was going to a wedding that same weekend, and hopped on my plane without my badge.

I emailed them, and guess what... there was no way for them to reissue my badge because they were sold out. I was lucky enough to have found a solution, but there was no at con registration.  And that is how their system is able to work. There is no check in, you just show up with your badge and you are in.  The one year AX mailed their badges, you still had to check in, pick up your lanyard and badge holder, still wait in a 3 hour line.


I still expect a line when I go to a convention, I stuck around for the line of doom last year, and perhaps if a transformer doesn't blow it won't be nearly as bad this year.  Mailing out things sounds like a plan, but you also have to plan for 20 other happenstances that go along with planning to mail out badges. Cons tend to stick with at-con pickup because it is easier. Or at least that has been the argument with friends who staff different cons.
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