Yes, I know Fan Fest was just a week ago, but there were some updates to the process for the Phoenix Comicon family of events that you should anticipate as Phoenix’s biggest Con weekend starts to take shape. May 24-27 is the weekend, Memorial Day.
For one thing, keep an eye on the updated guest list, because they’ve already announced Bautista, Michael Rooker and Sean Gunn as a Guardians of the Galaxy deal. I think it’s a good sign for the overall talent we can anticipate.
What we can look at from an Operations perspective is a plan that involves attendees being issued an RFID wristband to serve as identification for coming and going in the Con. Instead of that big floppy Con badge, you have to try to wear around your neck, you get a wristband that you wear for the balance of the Con, and each time you go in or coming out, you tap the wristband on the scanning kiosk.
No, it’s not Skynet or the NSA.
The coolest function of that check in/check out process that I could tell was that the Con could tell exactly how many people were in the Exhibitor Hall at any given time. As the day draws to a close, convention employees can tell precisely how many bodies they have to make sure get out of the building, instead of just guessing or checking all the bathrooms.
#ProTip: If you want to make the tapping in/out process as painless as possible, turn it inside out. It’s much easier to see the actual target that has to scan if you’re not messing around with it from the outside. Keep your wristband on and in the best shape possible for the duration of the weekend and enjoy not having to deal with the badge dangling.
I’d also suggest that each of you try to be as positive and helpful through the process as possible. Yes, it’s a hassle, and trying to get in and out through the security measures takes more time than just walking in. You know what won’t make it any faster? Complaining about it or trying to defeat the “security theatre” that is engaged. We are all part of a larger Geek community, and if we need to put up with some inconveniences to protect each other, we should do it and be glad that we can. You wouldn’t try to walk into an NFL football game or a concert or anything else that is a collection of that many people in a small space, while armed with a fake gun. When you think of it that way, from the perspective of law enforcement people that see only the size of the crowd, the complaints start to look empty. The fact that we have ever been able to arm ourselves with prop weapons to this point, to take cool costumed pictures at conventions, is something for which we should be grateful, and move on.
The point is for us to be together and celebrate the things that bond us.
I look forward to seeing what PCC has in store for us this spring, and I hope to see you there.