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2nd REMINDER – PANEL PROGRAMMING IS GETTING READY FOR WISCON 43!

The time to WisCon 43 is approaching, and we believe it’s important to keep the community updated, so let’s get it started off right!

Panel Programming wants to help you get the best WisCon panel programming experience, so after you register, we would like for you to do a couple of things.

1. Update your profile, especially your email address.
All you need to do is log in to your profile, click the “Edit” link on the right side of your name, then click on “Save” once you’re done.

2. Update your availability.
This is essential information for us. The more information you provide us, the better chance you have in getting your top choices of panels at your most desired times. To update your availability, please click on “Tell Us Your Schedule”. After you click on “Tell Us Your Schedule,” you will be brought to the following screen:

In this text, you will be asked for your arrival/departure information, your desired number of panels, as well as your preferred panel times. Once again, the more information you provide us, the better it will be for you. Given that it is early, you can start off with a ballpark estimate, but please update as we get closer to the availability deadline in 2019.

3. Submissions for Panel Programming are open! Please be sure to submit your proposal to the correct department.

If you log into your profile, you will see a list of different options where you can submit your program idea to the right department on the left-hand side of the screen. Please see the screenshot below for an example.

If you want to submit a panel idea, please click on the “Submit Ideas” option. If you want to submit a party, please click on the “Host a party” option. If you want to submit a paper proposal/academic proposal, please click on the “Submit Paper Proposal” option.

Panel Programming asks that you please use the correct option for submitting your program idea. If you submit an event to us that is not a panel, due to the volume of panel requests and the subsequent organization of the panel schedule, we cannot guarantee that your submission will be timely transferred to the correct department. The deadline to submit a panel idea to Panel Programming is January 21, 2019.

As we get closer to WisCon 43, Panel Programming will regularly update the community of its various deadlines. We are excited to kick off planning for WC43.

As usual, if you have any questions regarding Panels, please email us at panels@wiscon.net.

Killable Bodies In SF Panel

Update: July 2018.
We would like to apologize for wording in this initial public post that may have mischaracterized the panelist’s background and what happened at the panel. This was not a case of an outright Nazi sympathizer or alt-right infiltrator at WisCon, but rather a case of a conversation going badly awry amid deeply fraught political and emotional territory. There does not seem to have been any intent to promote Nazi ideology. For a fuller explanation, see this statement.

The original blog post has been retained below.

During the Killable Bodies In SFF panel at WisCon this morning (Sunday), a panelist engaged in Nazi and Confederate apologia and also appeared to posit that disabled or injured people sometimes “have to be sacrificed.”
They continued this behavior even after the audience and other panel members expressed the harm this was causing them.

WisCon rejects these ideas. They are in conflict with our Code of Conduct. The panelist in question will be banned and asked to immediately leave convention spaces.

The relevant passage from the Code of Conduct is here:

Harassment includes: Verbal or written comments or displayed images that harmfully reinforce structures of oppression (related to gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, age, religion, geographic origin, or class); deliberate intimidation; stalking; body policing (including gender policing in all bathrooms); unwelcome photography or recording; sustained disruption of talks or other events; inappropriate physical contact; and unwelcome sexual attention. 

Please read the full Code of Conduct here. 

If you or anyone you know are in need of any support following this experience, please contact us. We will be working to find folks who can provide emotional support to you.

ETA: This particular individual has been banned for WisCon 42. The decision as to whether this ban will be extended in the future will be determined by our Anti Abuse Team post-con. They will also make the determination of whether the individual will be named by WisCon/SF3 and what other details are appropriate to share. Should you have information to contribute, you are welcome to email safety@wiscon.net.

This blog post has been updated to clarify details.

WisCon’s Thursday Night Shuttle

TL;DR: 4:30pm to 8:00pm Accessible Shuttle to and from Room of One’s Own!

WisCon is just days away, and we’re darned excited to see you all! For those of you who will be in Madison on Thursday night, we kick off the long weekend with an intimate reception and reading at Room of One’s Own Bookstore with our Guests of Honor, Saladin Ahmed and Tananarive Due. Room of One’s Own is a few blocks away from the Concourse Hotel, our main venue, so WisCon offers a complimentary accessible shuttle to and from the bookstore. Shuttles will start running to Room of One’s Own at 4:30 pm, and will be making trips back to the Concourse as late as 8:00 pm. This is an as-needed shuttle, so as seats fill up and/or passengers get antsy, the shuttle will depart to its destination. You may wait for the shuttle at the Concourse on Wisconsin Avenue, alongside the east side of the hotel, and the shuttle back to the hotel will pick up right across the street from the entrance to Room of One’s Own (the street is one-way, so that is the sidewalk side). The vehicle, operated by Badger Bus, is a large van that is white with red lettering and a Bucky Badger mascot decal. It can fit 2 passengers using wheelchairs, and 6 passengers not, per trip. Tips aren’t necessary for the driver, but are always welcome. (WisCon will be compensating the driver, as well.) Room of One’s Own Bookstore is accessible by sidewalks and curb cuts, if you’d like to head over on your own time.

We look forward to this weekend! Safe travels!

Updates from WisCon’s Access Team

Greetings from Accessland, a magical realm where volunteers work behind the scenes to make WisCon accessible for as many humanoids as possible. We’d like to take a moment to remind our attendees of WisCon’s Access-related policies and opportunities, so we can all make the most of a wonderful weekend. Some of this may be old news to long-time con-goers, but I promise there’s at least one new thing below! We invite you to read more at http://wiscon.net/policies/accessibility/. In no particular order:
  1.  I’m blue, daba-dee, daba-dah. WisCon uses blue painter’s tape to mark areas of the convention space for various users, including squares on the floors of panel rooms for wheelchair parking, slashes on chairs near the fronts of panel rooms for those who who need to be close to hear or see, and 6th-floor aisle markings to keep travel lanes clear. It takes volunteer power to mark and upkeep these markings throughout the convention. If you’d like to help with the Blue Tape Crew, please sign up by filling out our online form, or emailing access@wiscon.net.
  2. Oo oo, that smell. WisCon asks con-goers to please consider those with allergies or chemical sensitivities by minimizing strong scents at the con, be it perfumes, incense, cigarette smoke, or similar. Unfortunately, the convention space is not a fragrance-free zone, but WisCon takes steps to minimize strong scents, including providing scent-free soaps in the restrooms. Keep these practices in mind when donating clothing to the Gathering’s clothing swap—washing donations with scent-free detergents before the convention will make the swap more awesome for everyone!
  3. In my room, in my room. WisCon can be overwhelming at times, so we offer a Quiet Room on the 2nd floor where attendees can get some peaceful respite. We also offer three Safer Spaces rooms for people of color, people with disabilities, and people who are trans/genderqueer. Other relaxing escapes are available, like sitting in on a reading or taking a stroll through nearby parks.
  4. I like to eat, eat, eat, apples and bananas. Don’t let the hanger consume you; consume some of WisCon’s goodies instead! We try to accommodate as many eaters as possible, whether vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, or just on a tight budget, we have plenty of options for you. The Friday Bake Sale, Sunday Dessert Salon, and free snacks and meals at the Consuite will have major allergens marked, but are not entirely nut-free if you have severe allergies.
  5. I got two turntables and a microphone. WisCon works hard so that everyone can read and listen how they read and listen best. We offer CART captioning at the Guests of Honor speeches and at select panels, as well as limited ASL interpreting. With a heads-up before May 1st, we can also provide large-print or Braille versions of our Souvenir Program Book. Larger panel rooms are equipped with microphones, and we remind our panelists not to cover their mouths when speaking, for the benefit of audience members who lip-read. Descriptions of the visual components of panels will benefit audience members who are blind or low-vision.
  6. I like to move it, move it. WisCon wants to make it as easy to get around the convention space as possible. Because events take place on multiple floors, many attendees use the hotel’s elevators to move around. If you can take the stairs, please do, to alleviate traffic to the elevators for those who need them! Additionally, WisCon provides shuttles to our off-site Thursday night reading. We encourage a visit to the Welcome table at the Gathering on Friday to learn more about getting around the convention.
  7. Can you feel it, can you feel it, can you feel it? This WisCon 42 will be the convention’s first year offering a Tactile Art Tour of our Art Room. With a dozen artists participating, we’re excited for a new way to experience the art showcased at the convention. Details are still being ironed out, so stay tuned!
Questions? Concerns? Forget to request an accommodation, or want to make a suggestion? Email us at access@wiscon.net. We look forward to creating a stellar experience with you at WisCon 42!

Update Your Availability for Panels for WisCon 42 by Friday, March 30th!

We love that so many people sign-up to be panelists every year!

What we need now is your availability so we can schedule panels at the best time for all the panelists.

You will need a WisCon account in order to view the availability form. If you don’t have an account, create one at the “Create Your Account” page. For those with an account already created, go to “Log in to My Account” page. You should see the link to the form once you have logged into your account.

Please let us know your availability by March 30th!

As always, questions/concerns/feedback can be sent to program@wiscon.net.

Jackie Gross, Lead Panel Programming

JP Fairfield, Panel Programming

Jennifer Cross, Panel Programming

WisCon 42