Skepticism

DragonCon Wrap-up and Pointless Blabbering (Video!)

Rebecca Watson

Rebecca leads a team of skeptical female activists at Skepchick.org. She travels around the world delivering entertaining talks on science, atheism, feminism, and skepticism. There is currently an asteroid orbiting the sun with her name on it. You can follow her every fascinating move on Twitter or on Google+.

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12 Comments

  1. This video clearly illustrates the effect of an English diet on the typical American expat. Note the fragmented thoughts and the listless delivery after only a few months of exposure. Friends don’t let friends eat bangers and mash!

  2. Only two hours? Amateur. ;)

    The guy who runs registration is told every single year that there are better ways to do it, companies that specialize in outsourcing registration for conventions like this, etc. Every single year, the guy reiterates his opinion that everything is Just Fine.

    He is incorrect.

    Anyway, got my vax at the clinic.

  3. This is the 4th consecutive year that I’ve pre-registered. My badge wait the 3 previous times was 30 minutes or less. This year, my wait was 2.5 hours, which is 5x longer than my longest previous wait. My last name is still exactly the same, but the system is broken and getting worse.

  4. Actually, maxineofarc, the guy in charge of registration did NOT say everything is fine this year.

    Next year we are moving to a completely different system. It won’t involve the different lines based on your last name, or any of that. Your membership reminder post card will have a bar code and will be your actual ticket for the convention. When you get there, you will need to have your membership card, and have it scanned, that will print and get you your badge and such.

    The new system is one used by other big conventions, so, hopefully, that change will fix A LOT of the issues with waiting in line and such like there were this year.

    Also, you don’t just save $20, you can save up to $80 if you pre-register RIGHT when the memberships go on sale. The prices go up by $20 every 2 months or so after around the end of January.

  5. Registration has posted that they apologized for the waits this year for pre-reg, they “tried something new” and it didn’t work.

    Next year, Dragon*Con is going to a bar code system. Pre-reg will have their usual post cards mailed to them that includes a scannable bar code, which will make the badge pick up process much faster. You can read more about that here:
    http://bit.ly/d869Vs
    (yes, the link is to LiveJournal – Dragon*Con folks still use it, though I have no idea why).

    As noted above, registration wait times were an anomaly. It should also be noted that the entire event is run by volunteers who, for the most part, do an amazing job, but not everything is perfect all the time.

    Hopefully next year Dragon*Con will also host the vaccination clinic. Unfortunately we just didn’t have enough advance notice to make it happen this year. I was glad to hear that Peachtree Center did work out, even though it was more expensive to do that way. Dragon*Con is all about philanthropy and has an official charity each year (this year it was the Lupus Foundation), and a blood drive that often breaks records, so a vaccination clinic is right up their alley. Stuff like this just has to be in the works very early in the year for it to be able to happen at the beginning of September, as there is finite space for booths and tables as you might have noticed.

    For those who have suggestions and ideas on how to improve the system, go to Dragoncon.org and submit feedback.

    For those who want to make Skeptrack better – go to skeptrack.org and send in suggestions and feedback. Skeptrack is organized and run by about five people (not because it’s an exclusive club of volunteers, but because running the track isn’t as much fun as attending it and going to parties, or so I’m told) – again on a purely volunteer basis. Official volunteers have to donate at least 25 hours of their time during the Con, but often it’s much much more.

    Considering we got a lot of last minute requests as well as Guest additions and cancelations I think things went quite well overall for Skeptrack at Dragon*Con. Obviously we can’t make everyone happy all the time, and we have limited control over what happens outside of our programming track, but we’re happy to pass on feedback and do what we can to improve your overall Convention experience.

    Dragon*Con management is very impressed with the turn out of skeptics so far and the quality of the programming we’ve been able to offer. Much of that is due to all of you who come and participate and volunteer – so thank you again for another great year.

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