This post will be my explanation as to why I'm so fucking pissed off at the BotCon staff this year, and why this year may very well be my last.
As you know (or don't), BotCon is an official Transformers convention run every year in conjunction with FunPub and Hasbro (at least, as far as my knowledge understands). 2012 will mark my 4th year in a row attending this thing. Honestly, I'm surprised at this point that I've even gone this long since the damned thing is so expensive.
Normally, I'd get a Primus Package, and then immediately flip the set on eBay to sell the boxed set we get for a premium price, pretty much forcing the convention to pay for itself so I then can spend the money on toys I want to buy, as opposed to toys that are sub-par. So, really, the only thing that I go to BotCon for is the fun fan experience we get every single year.
Let me start this off by saying that I totally love this convention, as a convention. Just as itself and by itself. But I, as a lot of people likely feel the same, would probably vote out the old staff in favor of new staff at the drop of a hat.
It has already been pretty clear that Brian Savage, the main man behind both BotCon and JoeCon (the official GI Joe convention) loves JoeCon the most -- it is VERY clear to the entire Transformers fandom that BotCon is Savage's "red headed step-child." So, our logic is, let's have new staff. Simple enough to pick up a new set of staff that actually loves this crazy giant robot fandom we're in so that we, as loyal, loving, would-TOTALLY-buy-expensive-toys-if-they-w
Thus, after a long-winded introduction, comes the reasoning for my rambling.
I have had problems with Brian Savage since the very beginning of my BotCon adventures back in 2009. They actually (technically) extend to 2008 (by proxy) when one of my best friends was forcibly removed from the convention for breaking the convention's dress code even though there was no dress code in force at that time. From the stories I was told, Savage was pretty much being a dick about the whole thing and had upset my friend extensively. She told me he was continuing to be an asshole to her through e-mail, even after she asked for dress code clarification from him multiple times.
Since that time, Savage has since been understanding about my friend's anger and has since redeemed himself, at least to a certain extent. Both she and I do not disagree with the dress code and are actually rather happy there is now one in place, but what our major issue still rather stands to be is trying to enforce rules that just simply aren't there.
I had no further personal problems with Savage until early 2011 when I was amazed by the absolute immature dickery that he decided to display. I am a part of a website that helps people build amazing robot costumes and strives to be a very open community for all. This community helped give Savage the necessary push he needed to incorporate a Cosplay/Costuming panel at the convention in 2009. I was not a part of the first panel, however I watched a lot of our website staff work with each other and plan out every aspect of their speaking roles. I had no contact with Savage at this time and had no hand in the panel, however one of my very good friends did. She has reported that there were absolutely no hitches in the planning stages of their panel, except that one certain individual never really offered up any insightful information. Not really a big deal, though it was rather annoying.
Just before the convention in 2009, the panel staff decided they were going to meet at the convention to talk about the panel and be sure everything was set. They had also stated that if a speaker did not show up, he or she will not be in the panel. The unhelpful individual did not show up to the meeting. the other panelists allowed it to slide, however, after she had stated that she had been caught up in some important matter and could not get away.
Cutting myself off before I get /too/ long winded, the panel went perfect with our website administrator as the main speaker. 2009 was a big success for our website, costuming, and just general all-around fun (really, 2009 still remains the best convention ever for me).
2010 was a bit of a clusterfuck. Our unique individual decided she was going to be our liasion between our website and Savage. Not a big deal, as I'd never worked with the man before and she seemed to know him. So, we began to plan -- or not. The "planning" we did was myself and another website moderator trying hard to get something off the table and the other two panelists involved were just chit-chatting. All in all, I don't think our planning thread went beyond 20 posts.
We had decided that we would meet for lunch before the panel began to go over talking points. This actually went over fairly well. I was surprised, however, when I was not handed some sort of talking roster or bulletpoints and was, apparently, expected to just magically remember everything we were going to discuss. Now, of course, I was worried. I knew the basics of what was discussed on the thread, and what I had strongly suggested that we go over, however nothing that was brought up was actually discussed.
Our liasion was also our lead speaker and should have shoe-horned our conversating when it got off-track to back on-task, but there was none of that. She had no fucking clue what she was doing, in all honesty. However, even though I believe we all rambled and talked about nonsense quite a bit, I personally did not feel there were any harsh feelings between any of the panelists during that time.
Fast track to 2011 where I had my first personal problem with Savage. On our website (where planning for the previous two conventions had happened, mind you), the three panelists (myself and two others) who were going to be at Pasadena '11 that year began working diligently on our upcoming panel. Our planning literally started July 10, 2010. We had not seen our liasion/lead speaker since a couple months before BotCon 2010, so just made the thread and began planning, figuring she'd be along shortly to "help us out" and what not as she had done the year previous.
However, from the day we started the panel discussion to just a couple short months before BotCon 2011, we had not seen our liasion so I nominated myself to become liasion for this year. Instead of receiving an e-mail reply to my question about a costuming panel from Savage himself, I received a rather nasty comment from our previous liasion on an entirely different website. The bitch didn't even decide she was going to come on our website to notify us, as panelists, that she was leader of the panel.
Essentially, Savage had gone to "tattle on me/us" to the other lady instead of being the professional asshat he's supposed to be and politely inform me that the panel is already being handled by someone else, and to clarify why I was instead thinking the panel was "mine."
It's a long-winded story, but to cut myself off and to TL;DR, I was dealt a very painful blow by someone I THOUGHT was supposed to be professional about his position. Was also dealt a painful blow by a friend-turned-bitch with an ego problem.
Fast forward now to a mere month ago. We all know that Pete Sinclair runs the @BotCon Twitter feed. We also are all pretty much aware that Sinclair does not have his own personal Twitter feed and likes to use the official professional account as such. It's irritating sometimes.
I was excited when my feed was FULL of @BotCon Tweets and had figured BotCon information had been announced. Oh no, of course not. Sinclair had decided that "BotCon dates/location will be announced SOON but for the next 24 hours, I'll be making horrible and uncalled for #OccupyBotCon jokes. HURRDURR."
I was irritated and so were other fans as I could tell, but I'm a pretty easy-going gal. Not much gets to me, and this wasn't going to ruin my day. However, the more I saw people complain about @BotCon's stupid jokes, the more I saw @BotCon only Re-Tweeting the Tweets that held them in praise, or that essentially told the angry fans to "STFU, you have no sense of humor."
As time went on, fans became more and more vocal about the fact that Sinclair decided to RT praise-y stuff and ignore the irritated people on his Mentions bar. Mentioning things like "95% of people like the jokes, the other 5% have no sense of humor" really didn't help the situation any and simply served to piss people off more.
As for my personal experience with the asshole, I made some tweets at him about how I was irritated, voicing my opinion along with the other people in my Twitter feed (I follow a LOT of people that follow/used to follow @BotCon, and none of them were saying how LUL-zy @BotCon's Tweets were, so IDK where the "95% demographic" came from), and Sinclair comes back 'round with a generic "If you don't like what I'm posting, simply unfollow."
Okay, what the fuck? You don't fuckin' tell your customers to GTFO of your store if they're not doing anything wrong. Why the fuck would you, as a professional account that is SUPPOSED to be a professional face for your company/convention tell people to go away?
That got a lot of people fuming, I'm sure. A couple misled RTs and Sinclair managed to piss off several of the people I follow, one in particular. After voicing my very strong opinion about how he was handling his utter failure of an account (also letting him know that I thought Savage was an ass), this was our (basic) exchange:
Me: "Just as an FYI, telling your customers to unfollow you is horribly bad PR, and considering you're a professional account it's a really good way to watch your attendance plummet."
Sinclair: "[WTF@TFW Podcast] will not be losing followers. They're an awesome podcast. :D"
[One of the Podcast members was also a part of this conversation, hence the reason Sinclair was making this "joke".]
Me: "I meant you, asshole."
Sinclair: "It was just a joke ..."
Before this I was already irritated with them and this just made me even more angry. You wouldn't go "LOL INSERT JOKE HERE" to someone's face if they were standing right in front of you while they were angry, so why the FUCK would you do it here?
And on a PROFESSIONAL account, no less?!
FYI, SINCLAIR, THIS ONLY WORKS IF YOU'RE ANONYMOUS.
Oh wait, right, this is the Internet.
I'm sorry, I just got into a fight with a certified BotCon Troll and there's nothing I can do about it.
@BotCon proceeded to block me and posted a generic "From now on, any tweets directed that contain foul language will not be tolerated."
Well, looks like I'll be getting my BotCon news from a more reputable, professional source.
Thanks for making my decision to unfollow you for me.
(I probably should not have spent so much time on this.)