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Steve.Young

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Official Convention Feedback
« on: June 01, 2015, 02:59:51 PM »

The form won't be used this year. I'll take on the task of organizing and sending departments individual feedback.

Please structure your feedback so it's easier for me to get the feedback to the proper departments. (No walls of text...bullet points would be great/preferred but not required).

Ideally structured this way:

Bullet Point 1
Bullet Point 2
Bullet Point 3

But if you require more explanation

Summary paragraph 1 on issue 1

Summary paragraph 2 on issue 2

This helps me organize it and that it gets sent to the proper people.

Thanks,
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Admiral Donuts

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Re: Official Convention Feedback
« Reply #1 on: June 01, 2015, 04:12:54 PM »

The Cosplay Hangout should be closer to Peacebonding
My friends got denied Peacebonding and had to modify their props. This involved going to the Hilton, going to the Marriott, and then going back to the Hilton. Wouldn't it make more sense to have them close together so people who need to modify props can do it quicker?

Signs
Basic signage that tells you how to get to the shuttle, Fairmont, Swap Meet, etc. Clockwork Alchemey does it despite being a much smaller con and it works really well.

Kuudere

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Re: Official Convention Feedback
« Reply #2 on: June 01, 2015, 04:23:55 PM »

You've got your work cut out for you to take on everything by yourself! Though, the forums are a little slow by now, so if you really want to reach a larger audience for feedback, promoting this thread through social media would be a good start.

Note: Most of my largest concerns were already responded to by staff (because we have some awesome staff that check in on the forums), but I'll list them here just so that they're on the "official" feedback and don't get forgotten. And I want to mention beforehand that this year's Fanime was one of the best-run Fanimes I've been to in my 11 years of attendance. So great job, staff!

----------------------------------------------

    Guests:
    • More thorough moderation in guest panels to avoid inappropriate attendee behavior.
    • Keep guest panel line for questions out of the middle aisle so as not to obstruct view of the guest for half of the room.
    • Bigger rooms for guest panels.

    Artist Alley:
    • More transparency for Artist Alley methods and reasons behind delays.
    • Accept more crafts artists. The prints were beautiful this year, but there weren't enough crafts.

    Guides:
    • Utilize apps like Guidebook for mobile guides. These should be able to easily push updates to the schedule, I think.
    • Minor request: Make guides available in downloadable form without making a separate account on a third party website.

    Housing:
    • Better servers for CMR housing. I'm really hoping that this, above all else, is fixed for next year.

    Registration/Website:
    • Require a user-generated password for registration accounts.

      Explanation:
      It is way, way too simple to figure out how to log into someone else's account when all that's required is an email and zip code. This is a big area of concern for privacy, since private information is stored in these accounts. Also, hotel reservations are kept under this account and can be changed by unauthorized people if a person were to want to, say, get back at another person or just to be malicious in general.

    Swap Meet
    • Keep the swap meet in the South Hall. Even though it was still packed, there was at least room to escape the crowds and find people.

    Gaming Hall:
    • More space between the tabletop games tables. This can be an issue for safety reasons.

    General:
    • More official response to complaints/serious suggestions, less silence from staff when things go wrong. This helps with building trust in staff.

    --------------------------------------------------

    That's it for now. If I think of anything else, I'll mention it later.

    And like I've already mentioned, this year's Fanime was great overall. I hope that the staff that see these know that they're likely only going to hear the negatives, but that's because the people who enjoyed themselves don't often leave feedback. Thank you, staff, for a great 5 days!
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    otakuya

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    Re: Official Convention Feedback
    « Reply #3 on: June 01, 2015, 08:51:17 PM »

    General
    Crank up the fans and A/C. It may be me, but it got really hot and hard to breathe in many rooms. Especially the gaming room, artist alley, and main convention center area.

    Cosplay Spectacular
    Cosplay Spectacular was not in the program guide aside from a small square in the 'at-a-glance' page. The show itself had a very low attendance than what I'm used to seeing. Also, their sticker ticket system didn't really work, because of the low attendance; anyone just walked in and sat anywhere. I get that there's no more Cosplay Linecon, but at least fill the Civic.

    Arcade
    Most of the arcades were the same systems for the past several years. Maybe more of a selection and multiplayer co-op games, like Simpsons, X-Men, Daytona USA 8-player. At least, revamp the arcades selection. (example: California Extreme)

    Registration
    Don't change anything!
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    Sunara Ishi

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    Re: Official Convention Feedback
    « Reply #4 on: June 01, 2015, 09:58:29 PM »

    Overall I applaud you staff and all the hard work you do. I've witnessed several years of it and am grateful for it.
    As always... the Dealer's Hall, Artist Alley, Video Rooms, Gaming Hall, etc. does an excellent job.
    I'll address some issues:

    Guides:
    • Can you please not use black text on a dark gray background? It is really hard for those of us with vision problems and/or tired to see. Especially when it is also small text. Also makes it too easy to overlook guest panels (since those were the ones in that color.)
    • Please list all major events. Swap Meet wasn't listed for Thurs. And I don't think it was listed for Fri. either.

    Accessibility to cosplay gathering areas
    • Finding the exit, to the cosplay gathering area next to the Hilton, was rather confusing and no signs were put up. The upstairs exits were supposedly alarmed and un-usable. The only exit I found was through the Hilton restaurant; which isn't ideal. I know you can't do anything about the existing structure of the building but signs would've been nice.

    More Cosplay-related stuff
    • It would have been really nice if Peace-bonding and the Cosplay Hangout were closer together. Ideally, it would be awesome to have Peace-bonding, Cosplay Hangout, and Item check all in the same area. It would save time for those cosplayers that have to run all over the con (for peace-bonding, costume prop/fixes, item check, etc. )before a gathering...
    • Next time, can you make some note in the guide/program book that there is a second peace-bonding station?

    Staff & Safety
    • I noticed this during Thurs. night (it may not be true for all of con.) but the Staff on Thurs. let con-goers to bang on the tent walls, for hours, until I said something. Which I said, after someone on the opposite side, had hit me on my head. This should have never got to this point. Perhaps the girl was new and/or understaffed but usually dangerous behavior is seen by staff & addressed faster.

    Video Rooms
    • Personally, I'd like to see more variety of types of shows. I liked someone's idea of having a room that showed a few examples of each genre. I personally would love a room that showed Shoujo/series based off Dating Sim games...
    • It seems like the number of video rooms have actually decreased over the years? I would have sworn there was a year when video rooms took up a lot of the Marriott and the opposite side (where they are now)? More video rooms again would be nice.
    • Bring back more Jdrama rooms. The Asian film one is nice but I would love one that showed Jdrama series. I hardly get a chance to watch many anymore and it would be fun to watch some during con.

    Artist Alley
    • That entrance.... It was really obscure and hard to find at first. Wouldn't one of the two exits, have made a better entrance? They ended up closing off one of the exits but for awhile it was "That's an exit.. that's also an exit. Where is the entrance? Eh????"
    • Although I think artist alley was good this year, it felt really crammed. (I think it was the shear number of attendees this year.)

    Other
    • Panels: It would have been been nice if you could've gotten that hotel across the street again for panels. That was nice that one year. The Fairmont seems really far to go for panels; it makes it tempting to skip that area and stay within the main building.
    • Also panels: I would love more cosplay/lolita/prop panels. And not just guest ones. Specifically, more obscure/technical ones like molds.
    • Space issues: There were a gazillion of people this year. It is really too bad the con center doesn't have a true 3rd floor (or 4th) or was twice as big... I really wish there was something the con could do about this because it really didn't feel safe. I kept getting bumped with props/items or people bumping into the bruise on my arm. I kind of worry about those with more serious issues. It also seemed like some rooms were crowded while there were also several areas that seemed unused?
    • Water fountains: What was going on with the water fountains? Some of them were turned off halfway through the con. Or had barely any water. Did the con center reach its water limit or something?
    • Signs. This doesn't affect me but affects friends: There should be signs for the Lines for Parents with young children or more mention of the accommodations offered to them. I forgot about this since it didn't affect me & I think my friends were unaware of it: There should be more mention/signs for the New Mother's Room.
    • More stuff to do: If I'm being honest, I would prefer more stuff to do over stuff to buy. Sure, Dealer's Hall was awesome this year but I didn't quite realize how much it cut into Video Rooms. Unless you can magic a 3rd & 4th floor, I don't know if we need quite that large of a Dealer's Hall.

    Guests
    • I still would like more Japanese guests. I would've attended more autograph sessions but I stupidly forgot my item to be signed 6+ hrs away... -.-; But I'd love more variety of Japanese guests. Though I admit the Chalk Twins were actually pretty cool in person.
    • More music guests. I would like to have two music guests again. I understand if you get someone huge but...

    Dealer's Hall, Gaming Hall, Reg
    • You're good. Don't change anything.
    • On second thought, a couple more food venders inside if Dealer's Hall remains that huge? And I'm not talking pocky and mochi. (Though I still wish that Sesame Mochi was actually the Cookie Dough Mochi I thought I saw out of the corner of my eye...) Actually, a vender selling Ice Cream mochi would be awesome... or Green tea ice cream.

    I think that might be it for now. Unless I think of something I missed.

    Edit:
    I forgot about this one because I don't really attend it anymore... so mine is based off of past years and what I hear. From what I've heard, it hasn't changed.

    Cosplay Spectacular
    • I never particularly cared for how skits and certain walk-ons were mixed. I think the ones showing off their costumes & singing should be part of a separate event. I'm talking the individual ones (not the group ones.) I used to go for the skits and only the skits. I'm ok with singing if it is part of a skit but I don't think they should allow "I think I can sing so I wanna show off" individuals. Honestly, they should be taking part in karaoke not masquerade. Or maybe Stage Zero.
    • At least make the costume thing a separate event... it doesn't do well on such as large stage and I think would do better in more of a cat-walk/fashion show setting. Have these people sign up for a "Cosplay Fashion show" instead. Plus, it gives you another event at fanime.
    • Judging: I have no first hand experience with this but I've heard judging is rigged & biased. I think it should either be done by an independent party or an audience vote. We don't need to know the results right away; the fact that they already know who won just shortly after the show ends just screams "fake." We the audience aren't dumb and know the results aren't true.
    • You know what... make the results a separate thing. If it isn't a audience vote, make it into a panel or event where it is one of those over the top judging shows. Where the judges have to explain what is great or bad about a skit.
    « Last Edit: June 03, 2015, 02:20:40 PM by Sunara Ishi »
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    luffy77

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    Re: Official Convention Feedback
    « Reply #5 on: June 01, 2015, 10:23:25 PM »

    • I also agree that peace bonding and cosplay repair should be in the same area.  I had to go back twice before getting my bow peace bonded and it does get kind of annoying

    I can't think of anything else.  Like others have said this years con was run great.
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    Abyss1

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    Re: Official Convention Feedback
    « Reply #6 on: June 02, 2015, 11:14:37 AM »

    Overall I applaud you staff and all the hard work you do. I've witnessed several years of it and am grateful for it.
    As always... the Dealer's Hall, Artist Alley, Video Rooms, Gaming Hall, etc. does an excellent job.
    I'll address some issues:

    Guides:
    • Can you please not use black text on a dark gray background? It is really hard for those of us with vision problems and/or tired to see. Especially when it is also small text. Also makes it too easy to overlook guest panels (since those were the ones in that color.)
    • Please list all major events. Swap Meet wasn't listed for Thurs. And I don't think it was listed for Fri. either.

    Accessibility to cosplay gathering areas
    • Finding the exit, to the cosplay gathering area next to the Hilton, was rather confusing and no signs were put up. The upstairs exits were supposedly alarmed and un-usable. The only exit I found was through the Hilton restaurant; which isn't ideal. I know you can't do anything about the existing structure of the building but signs would've been nice.

    More Cosplay-related stuff
    • It would have been really nice if Peace-bonding and the Cosplay Hangout were closer together. Ideally, it would be awesome to have Peace-bonding, Cosplay Hangout, and Item check all in the same area. It would save time for those cosplayers that have to run all over the con (for peace-bonding, costume prop/fixes, item check, etc. )before a gathering...
    • Next time, can you make some note in the guide/program book that there is a second peace-bonding station?

    Staff & Safety
    • I noticed this during Thurs. night (it may not be true for all of con.) but the Staff on Thurs. let con-goers to bang on the tent walls, for hours, until I said something. Which I said, after someone on the opposite side, had hit me on my head. This should have never got to this point. Perhaps the girl was new and/or understaffed but usually dangerous behavior is seen by staff & addressed faster.

    Video Rooms
    • Personally, I'd like to see more variety of types of shows. I liked someone's idea of having a room that showed a few examples of each genre. I personally would love a room that showed Shoujo/series based off Dating Sim games...
    • It seems like the number of video rooms have actually decreased over the years? I would have sworn there was a year when video rooms took up a lot of the Marriott and the opposite side (where they are now)? More video rooms again would be nice.
    • Bring back more Jdrama rooms. The Asian film one is nice but I would love one that showed Jdrama series. I hardly get a chance to watch many anymore and it would be fun to watch some during con.

    Artist Alley
    • That entrance.... It was really obscure and hard to find at first. Wouldn't one of the two exits, have made a better entrance? They ended up closing off one of the exits but for awhile it was "That's an exit.. that's also an exit. Where is the entrance? Eh????"
    • Although I think artist alley was good this year, it felt really crammed. (I think it was the shear number of attendees this year.)

    Other
    • Panels: It would have been been nice if you could've gotten that hotel across the street again for panels. That was nice that one year. The Fairmont seems really far to go for panels; it makes it tempting to skip that area and stay within the main building.
    • Also panels: I would love more cosplay/lolita/prop panels. And not just guest ones. Specifically, more obscure/technical ones like molds.
    • Space issues: There were a gazillion of people this year. It is really too bad the con center doesn't have a true 3rd floor (or 4th) or was twice as big... I really wish there was something the con could do about this because it really didn't feel safe. I kept getting bumped with props/items or people bumping into the bruise on my arm. I kind of worry about those with more serious issues. It also seemed like some rooms were crowded while there were also several areas that seemed unused?
    • Water fountains: What was going on with the water fountains? Some of them were turned off halfway through the con. Or had barely any water. Did the con center reach its water limit or something?
    • Signs. This doesn't affect me but affects friends: There should be signs for the Lines for Parents with young children or more mention of the accommodations offered to them. I forgot about this since it didn't affect me & I think my friends were unaware of it: There should be more mention/signs for the New Mother's Room.
    • More stuff to do: If I'm being honest, I would prefer more stuff to do over stuff to buy. Sure, Dealer's Hall was awesome this year but I didn't quite realize how much it cut into Video Rooms. Unless you can magic a 3rd & 4th floor, I don't know if we need quite that large of a Dealer's Hall.

    Guests
    • I still would like more Japanese guests. I would've attended more autograph sessions but I stupidly forgot my item to be signed 6+ hrs away... -.-; But I'd love more variety of Japanese guests. Though I admit the Chalk Twins were actually pretty cool in person.
    • More music guests. I would like to have two music guests again. I understand if you get someone huge but...

    Dealer's Hall, Gaming Hall, Reg
    • You're good. Don't change anything.
    • On second thought, a couple more food venders inside if Dealer's Hall remains that huge? And I'm not talking pocky and mochi. (Though I still wish that Sesame Mochi was actually the Cookie Dough Mochi I thought I saw out of the corner of my eye...) Actually, a vender selling Ice Cream mochi would be awesome... or Green tea ice cream.

    I think that might be it for now. Unless I think of something I missed.

    About the water...You do know California is facing a severe drought right?
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    aetherltd

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    Re: Official Convention Feedback
    « Reply #7 on: June 02, 2015, 12:33:16 PM »

    About the water...You do know California is facing a severe drought right?
    Fanime may have an obligation to provide free water. See Food and Agricultural Code (Concert and Music Festival Safety Act) sec. 11000.10. That law is aimed at big raves and music festivals, and applies to any event with over 10,000 people on state property.
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    Nina Star 9

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    Re: Official Convention Feedback
    « Reply #8 on: June 02, 2015, 12:43:43 PM »

    I'll write up more later, but I want to get this one out before I forget:

    Facilities/general safety:

    - Outside the Hilton restaurant, there is a small step up (just a couple of inches) that is not marked as such with reflective tape or paint and is not well-lit at night. In order to access the "slab" area for cosplay gatherings and shoots, I had to go through the restaurant because my path in previous years (through the cosplayer hangout) no longer exists/was blocked off now that the hangout has moved. I ended up tripping over this small step Friday night while coming back inside from a late-night photoshoot (where I did not want to walk out on the street and around the entire building to get back inside in my skimpy costume) and falling flat on my face. Thankfully I wasn't injured except for some slight bruising on my palms, and none of my possessions were damaged, though it could have easily been far worse. This may be something to take up with the Hilton itself, but since that area is probably trafficked more during con than other times, is it possible to get some temporary reflective tape or other marking on that step during con, especially if people are forced to take that path back inside again? I believe there is a change in pavement type and a small metal edging on the step in question, but in the dark, it is difficult to tell that there is a difference in ground level and not just a metal barrier between two different types of pavement.

    (Also, agreeing with the difficulties in accessing that area for cosplay gatherings. I didn't like having to go through the restaurant and disturbing everyone, but I didn't have much of a choice most of the time, other than walking all the way around the outside of the building.)
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    Abyss1

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    Re: Official Convention Feedback
    « Reply #9 on: June 02, 2015, 04:50:50 PM »

    About the water...You do know California is facing a severe drought right?
    Fanime may have an obligation to provide free water. See Food and Agricultural Code (Concert and Music Festival Safety Act) sec. 11000.10. That law is aimed at big raves and music festivals, and applies to any event with over 10,000 people on state property.

    Missing the point...Any public meeting center has to provide potable water by building code!  But yea the complaint about the water flow rate is what I was referring to...really who cares if it takes you 2x as long to fill your bottle, if we can reduce water demand and the sink...remember not everyone is as savvy as you about not wasting water, A high GPM flow rate can lead to more water wasted by more people.
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    Sunara Ishi

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    Re: Official Convention Feedback
    « Reply #10 on: June 02, 2015, 08:05:29 PM »

    About the water...You do know California is facing a severe drought right?
    Fanime may have an obligation to provide free water. See Food and Agricultural Code (Concert and Music Festival Safety Act) sec. 11000.10. That law is aimed at big raves and music festivals, and applies to any event with over 10,000 people on state property.

    Missing the point...Any public meeting center has to provide potable water by building code!  But yea the complaint about the water flow rate is what I was referring to...really who cares if it takes you 2x as long to fill your bottle, if we can reduce water demand and the sink...remember not everyone is as savvy as you about not wasting water, A high GPM flow rate can lead to more water wasted by more people.
    What I was referring to was turned off fountains and water so low that you couldn't refill a bottle or drink out of the fountain. So those fountains were essentially not usable. It wasn't a complaint but more asking what was going on.
    To my knowledge, SJ hasn't started water restrictions? But I wasn't sure if it was different for businesses. I thought maybe they reached their rationed amount or something.

    I said nothing about water flow. I was talking about fountains (which were usable at the beginning of con) that were not usable later.

    I am quite aware of the drought. I live someplace that has high fire danger because of the drought. But dehydration isn't the answer. At large crowded events, you need to drink lots of water. Just because I'm asking doesn't mean that I don't cut back as much as I can.

    Now that I remember, I think the con center frequently cuts off water to infrequent areas of the con. But the Marriott also was having problems.
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    Imperial

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    Re: Official Convention Feedback
    « Reply #11 on: June 02, 2015, 09:30:00 PM »

    About the water...You do know California is facing a severe drought right?
    Fanime may have an obligation to provide free water. See Food and Agricultural Code (Concert and Music Festival Safety Act) sec. 11000.10. That law is aimed at big raves and music festivals, and applies to any event with over 10,000 people on state property.

    Missing the point...Any public meeting center has to provide potable water by building code!  But yea the complaint about the water flow rate is what I was referring to...really who cares if it takes you 2x as long to fill your bottle, if we can reduce water demand and the sink...remember not everyone is as savvy as you about not wasting water, A high GPM flow rate can lead to more water wasted by more people.
    What I was referring to was turned off fountains and water so low that you couldn't refill a bottle or drink out of the fountain. So those fountains were essentially not usable. It wasn't a complaint but more asking what was going on.
    To my knowledge, SJ hasn't started water restrictions? But I wasn't sure if it was different for businesses. I thought maybe they reached their rationed amount or something.

    I said nothing about water flow. I was talking about fountains (which were usable at the beginning of con) that were not usable later.

    I am quite aware of the drought. I live someplace that has high fire danger because of the drought. But dehydration isn't the answer. At large crowded events, you need to drink lots of water. Just because I'm asking doesn't mean that I don't cut back as much as I can.

    Now that I remember, I think the con center frequently cuts off water to infrequent areas of the con. But the Marriott also was having problems.

    The only thing I can say on this matter, not to take away from you guys on this, but we had a water cooler in Cosplay hangout that we made sure was always full. and on a personal note, I had low pressure at my dorm room at SJSU, so it may be the block, although I doubt it.
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    Sunara Ishi

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    Re: Official Convention Feedback
    « Reply #12 on: June 02, 2015, 11:28:59 PM »

    About the water...You do know California is facing a severe drought right?
    Fanime may have an obligation to provide free water. See Food and Agricultural Code (Concert and Music Festival Safety Act) sec. 11000.10. That law is aimed at big raves and music festivals, and applies to any event with over 10,000 people on state property.

    Missing the point...Any public meeting center has to provide potable water by building code!  But yea the complaint about the water flow rate is what I was referring to...really who cares if it takes you 2x as long to fill your bottle, if we can reduce water demand and the sink...remember not everyone is as savvy as you about not wasting water, A high GPM flow rate can lead to more water wasted by more people.
    What I was referring to was turned off fountains and water so low that you couldn't refill a bottle or drink out of the fountain. So those fountains were essentially not usable. It wasn't a complaint but more asking what was going on.
    To my knowledge, SJ hasn't started water restrictions? But I wasn't sure if it was different for businesses. I thought maybe they reached their rationed amount or something.

    I said nothing about water flow. I was talking about fountains (which were usable at the beginning of con) that were not usable later.

    I am quite aware of the drought. I live someplace that has high fire danger because of the drought. But dehydration isn't the answer. At large crowded events, you need to drink lots of water. Just because I'm asking doesn't mean that I don't cut back as much as I can.

    Now that I remember, I think the con center frequently cuts off water to infrequent areas of the con. But the Marriott also was having problems.

    The only thing I can say on this matter, not to take away from you guys on this, but we had a water cooler in Cosplay hangout that we made sure was always full. and on a personal note, I had low pressure at my dorm room at SJSU, so it may be the block, although I doubt it.
    Hmm... perhaps it was a city wide thing. It may just not be as easily noticeable outside large events.

    Well on this note, I'm happy to just let this issue drop. I wouldn't have asked if I knew I'd get flamed for asking about the water situation.
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    pantsu

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    Re: Official Convention Feedback
    « Reply #13 on: June 03, 2015, 03:43:10 AM »

    Masq/Cosplay Spectacular
    • wasn't advertised well AT ALL.  again (same in 2014).
    • REALLY HAPPY that the karaoke contest winner is part of the halftime show again.  thank you.
    • the event itself is still somewhat fatally flawed: i don't understand the reasoning for mixing walkons and skits in the performance order....this is just really jarring and ruins the flow of the show for me.  IMO the walkons should all go first, then the skits.
    • it really shows just how much the reputation of the masq has slipped that there were openings for entries 2 weeks before the con.  to get back in the community's good graces, organization needs to improve by 1000%: communication with entrants is still subpar, and updates are few and far between even on the forums.  on a personal note, i was so displeased with my experience in 2013, that i will not enter again unless major changes/improvements are made.

    Artist Alley:
    • better communication with artists and a THOROUGH explanation of how portfolios are being juried
    • MORE CRAFT ARTISTS!!!!  there were WAY too many solely print artists this year

    Guests:
    • more japanese guests please!!
    • guests mainly involved with (dare i say old?) series from BEFORE 2000 would be awesome.  i'm older, so most of my favorite series are older, and i often haven't even watched most of the 'flavor of the season' series that air now.  seiyuu from classic 90s shoujo series would be especially great.

    Guides:
    • put ALL the major events in the pocket guide. masquerade wasn't in there, and i could barely find any mention of swap meet.

    Housing:
    • what a hot mess. CMR has done the housing for a professional meeting i attend in SF (also with 25k+ attendees) and we've never had the problems that fanime seems to have with sites crashing, etc. now that linecon is fixed, this should be a big priority going forward.

    General:
    • response from higher up staff when serious things are going down (AA table selection/payment website crashes, lack of guest announcements a month before con, etc).  when you stay silent no one trusts you.
    • if you open housing/reg early again this fall, don't let everything basically languish until april.  we didn't see ANY updates on ANYTHING really from nov through almost the middle of march, and that really doesn't make people want to come to the con.  almost every other con i attend (all outside of CA) announces events/guests/updates throughout the year at a pretty regular pace.  loading it all up in the 6 weeks pre-con makes the whole event feel last minute, poorly planned, and rushed.
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    2018 lineup:
    Fri - Miss Frizzle
    Sat - Oren Pierre Alfonso (KR Gaim)
    Sun - General Leia (SW: TFA)
    Mon - Samwell jersey (OMG Check Please!)

    Ruzuki

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    Re: Official Convention Feedback
    « Reply #14 on: June 03, 2015, 09:34:28 AM »

    I volunteered a bit throughout the weekend, so I had a couple of ideas about things I had encountered during that.
    • Better Signs! A lot of the jobs listed were 'Door Guards' which basically just pointed people away from the wrong set of doors. Entrances were marked, but there were very few signs that said 'Exit only' or such.
    • For at-con registration, the receipt machines should be labeled to say that people need to tear down. I think 90% of the jams I fixed were because people tore the receipts the wrong way and made the machine jam for the next user. (I mentioned this to one of the staff but I didn't get the impression they really cared much.) Like it wouldn't even be hard, just print some labels and stick them on the machines.

    And also, for the pocket guides, they need to be sure to include everything! Quite a few things I tried to find was missing.
    • Karaoke room times
    • Swap Meet times and location. The location was only indicated by an arrow and was very confusing.
    • Ball dancing practice locations

    And the digital full guide should be available on a service that doesn't require an account to download the guide... and even once i made an account it still wouldn't let me save it to my iPad, which was frustrating because I dont have mobile service on my iPad so I rely on wifi to access the internet...

    It would also be nice if the Manga Lounge was open longer hours, I often wanted to read in there late in the evening after Artist Alley and Dealer Halls had closed.
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    Enkai

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    Re: Official Convention Feedback
    « Reply #15 on: June 03, 2015, 01:12:51 PM »

      Registration
      • Registration/badge pick up in general was great.  Seriously, I’m impressed how quickly you can handle a large number of people.
      • The big thing I would suggest is a way to go back on group reservations (or really, delete a member of the group before checking out so you can check out as an individual).  I registered my husband and me as a group, realizing the minimum was 3 people, and having no way to go back short of waiting a few days for the cart to expire.  I ended up being able to recruit a couple friends for the group, but I really would have just preferred a way to undo the group.
      • I’d also suggest that maybe a way of having some level of bypass lanes so people aren’t required to go through the maze when the line was empty.  This is mostly to account for the fact that some of us have different paces walking.

      Artists Alley
      • At the con itself, it seemed okay, although a friend of mine apparently had her booth given away.  She was able to get another though.
      • It sounds like staff needs to improve communication, namely in timeliness.  I know from my masquerade issues (coming later) that for things that involve a lot of preparation like that, earlier information is better

      Crowd Management
      I was impressed.  This year felt like there were a lot more people, but as far as it still being possible to move, it was much better.  I think the different entrances for Dealers/Artists Alley helped.  Last year I remember that the entrances were right across each other, and so getting through the hallway there (say going to/from the Dealer’s Hall) was very difficult.

      Karaoke
      I only had time to do the contest, but I wanted to compliment the team on how well it was run.  I do like the new rule changes, and I hope they keep with them.  They were also very accommodating when I requested to go later so I could go to a panel.  Tommy (I think?) was also really nice when we were on deck waiting to perform.  I certainly had definite nerves.

      Cosplay Spectacular/Masquerade
         Ooooh, boy.  I’ve already sent a more expanded version of this to the masquerade staff, but I’m of the opinion that Extravaganzas needs to get involved. This is the 3rd year of the show being…subpar…to put it politely, and I don’t think the current staff can be trusted to make the improvements necessary.  Short story of where I’m coming from. I was going to enter the masquerade, and due to my mistrust of how the show was being managed, I dropped competing to focus my efforts on karaoke.  I ended up winning karaoke, so I still got a bit of a behind-the-scenes view of how things were being run at the show. And of course, there was the show itself.
      • The good: Tadao.  Tadao saved the show from being a complete disaster.  I hope he comes back, but if he decides he doesn’t want to have to read his script in the dark with his cell phone light, I can’t blame him. Also, the people who did participate.  The way the event was run was horrible, but there were a number of terrific skits and amazing costumes.
      • The attendance MUST be improved.  Now, some people didn’t go that might have because there was a lack of communication in the program about Cosplay Spectacular.  Additionally, that sticker line system was more confusing from what I heard; primarily due to lack of signage or information in written materials.  Talking with friends, another big reason people aren’t going is because the show isn’t what it used to be.  To improve this, people have to be convinced to participate, because it’s the participants who make the show.  This requires management to shape up.
      • I do like walkons, but let’s face it – walkons are not what most people are going to see.  Back when Cosplay Spectacular was truly spectacular, the ratio of walkons to skits was like 1:7 (5 walkons, 35 skits, more or less?).  This year, there were nearly twice as many walkons as skits.  This year, it worked out, since those walkons made the obvious technical issues less noticeable (people were able to still walk on even if their music started too early, or got cut off, or was flat out the wrong track – as happened. A lot).  Now, I don’t blame the walk-ons, because when there are SO MANY technical issues, who wants to put up with the staff completing messing up your skit?
      • I’m with Pantsu on preferring the old format with walkons being a separate portion of the show.  This doesn’t work if the proportions stay what they are though.
      • Pre-show communication needs to be improved. Saying the registration will be up by a certain day and then disappearing for *a week and a half* is UNACCEPTABLE.  Additionally, when I was asking friends on staff to see if they could help prodding the system, it seemed like web team hadn’t even been contacted (and it was implied on the forums that they had been).

      And here’s some more specific things that need doing as opposed to talking about how Cosplay Spectacular is horrible.

      Specific things that need to happen
      • Get rules up in October/November.  Skits take a long time to prepare, and if you want to encourage those, people need to know the rules well in advance
      • GET THEM UP ON THE WEBSITE.  I’m a chronic forum lurker, but that’s me. You want to encourage more competition, you can’t require people to be active on the forums to know about it.
      • Get the registration up earlier. ALSO ON THE WEBSITE.
      • Actually ask people what they’re cosplaying and what their skit plans are.  This will help with rules enforcement, which is *severely* lacking.  I don’t really care about the whole Asian rule specifically (I only care because it’s a rule), but there is a disturbing trend of increasingly blatant rules violation being allowed on stage.  If you want people to respect the rules of the contest, you need to enforce the rules of the contest, and preferably BEFORE the contest.
      • ENFORCE THE RULES.  50 Shades of Miyazaki should NEVER have been allowed on stage, as soon as it was evident their audio track was *THREE* times longer than the time limit.  Additionally, the live-singing Vocaloid performance should never have been allowed a microphone.  That one in particular annoys me because before I dropped to focus on karaoke, I had *specifically* asked if I could do that, and I was told no.  And if the Asian-origin rule isn’t going to be enforced, it shouldn’t be a rule.  It isn’t fair to contestants who do follow the rules that may have preferred to do a Disney skit.
      • *Staff.*  The staff needs to be on the same page.  There were multiple occasions where I (as karaoke winner) was told two different things by staff members. The most egregious of these was when a staff member told me I didn’t need to go on stage yet because they thought I was going to be in the half-time show, whereas the head (and Tadao) had told me I would be the first act.
      • *Rehearsal.*  A cue-to-cue rehearsal needs to happen.  This much is obvious from the number of mistakes made in cues.  Around 2:30 pm, I was told there was going to be one; not that that was possible, since that’s an hour and a half before a show that’s about 2 and a half hours minimum.
      • *Backstage Radios.*  I don’t think there were backstage radios? That seems like a bare minimum requirement, given how much of a big deal was made about the state-of-the-art lighting system. Tadao certainly didn’t seem to have an earpiece from all his peeking backstage, and occasionally hearing “Stall! Stall” being said (we were sitting up front).  A friend of mine in the balcony said it appeared to him that the lighting staff was working entirely from a paper script.  *THIS IS UNACCEPTABLE*.  Given that there was no radio and no rehearsal, is it at all surprising that the starts and stops were botched?
      • *Seating system.* So the new seating system was not necessary because of how empty it was, but if that is something that people want to implement in the future, it needs to have better signage.  Not just a random person hanging out in front of the Civic.

      Steve, thanks for taking on managing of feedback.  Overall, Fanime was terrific this year, one of the most enjoyable for me, and I don't want anybody outside of masquerade staff to think that my massive Cosplay Spectacular gripe-fest means that I thought the convention overall was a failure.  Just Cosplay Spectacular.
    « Last Edit: June 03, 2015, 01:19:41 PM by Enkai »
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    Steve.Young

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    Re: Official Convention Feedback
    « Reply #16 on: June 03, 2015, 01:57:57 PM »

    Oh boy that was a long list of items for Cosplay... thanks for the very thorough feedback!
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    Sunara Ishi

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    Re: Official Convention Feedback
    « Reply #17 on: June 03, 2015, 02:25:24 PM »

    Edited my list for Cosplay Spectacular. Forgot about that one.
    Please see the last item here.
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    Takoyaki Sauce

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    Re: Official Convention Feedback
    « Reply #18 on: June 03, 2015, 03:51:04 PM »

    Facilities

     - Some standard signage seemed to be missing or misplaced like the end of access hallways "no access" or if a fire exit should not be breached to get to the cosplay hangout area, perhaps an incorporated map.
     - Water pressure low in the water fountains.
     - Some attractions/departments should have their own water stations (i.e. back of the gaming hall/ex hall 3)
     - A decision should be made on whether people are permitted on the 2nd floor patio/balconies on the hilton side.
     - why is convention center staff allowed to smoke or vape there while attendees are not.

    Fan Storage
     - Guidelines for what can be stored (dimensions) and the cost should be in the guidebook/program guide.
     - hours of operation and location was wrong in the pocket guide

    Shuttle
     - Signage with CA shuttle times and clear designation of shuttle area would've been helpful.  I walked around the outside asking different people where the shuttle stop was and ended up waiting for an airport shuttle at the hilton.

    Concessions
     - A bit pricey
     - Lady who got my hot dog was still wearing the same gloves she wore when collecting my cash.
     - Peete's coffee seemed to close early on thursday instead of being 24 hours like the rest of the days

    Day 0
     - Needs more attractions; maybe an exclusive showing/preview at stage zero; or a giant icebreaker
     - I know it's not a real day, but it seems like some things could be arranged to help get us attendees out of the way of staff setting up.

    Day 1
     - Why 2PM? Couldn't the dealer's hall open sooner?

    Musicfest/Guest of Honor
     - The offering was weak this year.  More guests=More money/Costs/Overhead, but perhaps this either justifies a higher ticket cost or charging at the door of some sub-events like AX.

    Exhibitions
     - I know it's a convention and not a trade show, but the small industry presence and lack of exhibitions other than a sponsored panel seems to maintain a "small con" feel unless that's what you are going for.

    Video Programming
     - What happened to jdorama?

    Badges
      - Maybe your staff or volunteers didn't care, but I forgot my badge in my room and I was still able to walk the main strip, enter video, dealers, gaming, and artist alley...
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    Enkai

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    Re: Official Convention Feedback
    « Reply #19 on: June 03, 2015, 05:36:39 PM »

    Oh boy that was a long list of items for Cosplay... thanks for the very thorough feedback!

    It's because I care.  ;) (seriously. I don't think I'd have that much to say if I was apathetic)  Masquerade has often been my favorite thing in conventions, and I want that back.


    Edit:
    I forgot about this one because I don't really attend it anymore... so mine is based off of past years and what I hear. From what I've heard, it hasn't changed.

    Cosplay Spectacular
    • I never particularly cared for how skits and certain walk-ons were mixed. I think the ones showing off their costumes & singing should be part of a separate event. I'm talking the individual ones (not the group ones.) I used to go for the skits and only the skits. I'm ok with singing if it is part of a skit but I don't think they should allow "I think I can sing so I wanna show off" individuals. Honestly, they should be taking part in karaoke not masquerade. Or maybe Stage Zero.
    • At least make the costume thing a separate event... it doesn't do well on such as large stage and I think would do better in more of a cat-walk/fashion show setting. Have these people sign up for a "Cosplay Fashion show" instead. Plus, it gives you another event at fanime.
    • Judging: I have no first hand experience with this but I've heard judging is rigged & biased. I think it should either be done by an independent party or an audience vote. We don't need to know the results right away; the fact that they already know who won just shortly after the show ends just screams "fake." We the audience aren't dumb and know the results aren't true.
    • You know what... make the results a separate thing. If it isn't a audience vote, make it into a panel or event where it is one of those over the top judging shows. Where the judges have to explain what is great or bad about a skit.

    I'm okay with splitting up the event.  An idea I had was a cosplay fashion show on Stage Zero each day, and the winners of each day could show up at some point during Cosplay Spectacular and walk-on while the MC talks about the awesome parts of their costume that's why they won.  'Cause being honest, as a crazy craftsmanship cosplayer, that's what I want people to know about.  However, that wouldn't work if, like this year, people don't want to do skits.

    Also, I don't think singing skits have been allowed since at least 2009 (I seem to recall some live audio in 2008?).  The rule's always been pre-recorded audio.  For some reason, even though it was explicitly against the rules, some skits were allowed to do so anyway. Don't ask me why.

    On your judging suggestions though - As somebody who competes and does attend these things, I'm certain that what you hear about judging is hearsay.  There is a separate panel doing judging.  I have a lot of problems with Cosplay Spectacular this year, and the judging is not one of them. Masquerade staff does not judge these things - it's an outside panel, although they do often repeat (I think Wayne Kaa's local).  Wayne Kaa's from ACparadise, I believe, and he's been judging at least since 2009 when I was competing.  This year, the cosplay GOH was one of the judges (as it should be).  I don't have any issue with the panel.

    Additionally, one reason judging doesn't take as long as you might expect is because all the workmanship judging is done outside of the main show.  It's not like the judges are doing their craftsmanship evaluation when the competitor is onstage.  If the judges have a sheet where they score performances as they perform, judging is a simple matter of tallying points.  And announcing in the same event makes sense because that way you have the competitors in their winning costumes for publicity photos.  And this is still a costume competition, even if skits are involved, so that part should absolutely not go away.

    I do like the judges saying when the awards are given why they gave that award, and I know in years I've competed, they often have.  I did have to duck out for the announcement of the winners this year, so I don't know if they did or didn't.  I just heard about who won, and nobody who won surprised me. 

    An audience vote beyond a single crowd favorite winner should never occur in a convention of Fanime's size.  Then the winners would be, in many cases, a case of what anime or game is popular at the time, and dramatic skits wouldn't be given a fair shot.
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