Thank you for asking! I will not repeat anything I already went over in that whole post, but I will say that when I went to MetaCon 2013 in Minneapolis, Ryan was not seen so much around. Likely due to everything that was going on with that police report put online (yes, it is a very real Police Report). Though everything is technically allegation.
Again, one person is not a whole con. And for ANY con, there are many things one can do to help protect yourself. Now, I am not trying to make you paranoid. The cons that I’ve gone to very rarely have any sort of foul play issues. Mostly drunks, or some fights, but still a very small percent.
When the concern is if you feel safe as a subordinate, then you need to know when to speak up, or completely leave a situation you don’t feel safe in, and get to a safer space.
So the following is just some general safety advice, for any con, but really, its all about being aware and confident.
1) Don’t be alone with any one individual (or group) that you don’t fully trust. Or at least be aware or exits, or where other people could hear/see you.
- And I’m talking about room parties, or other secluded areas, mostly. Stick with a friend or two if you have any security reservations.
2) If you are under 21, don’t. Just don’t.
- Underage drinking not only puts you at a higher risk of danger (esp in a random room party), but you also run the risk of getting the party shut down, and possibly you and others kicked out of the con/hotel… And possibly the police could get involved.
3) If you are under 18 (or over 18), please stay in your legal age range for… Certain… contact activities.
4) Be cautious about overt flirtatious behavior and/or teasing.
- Keep an eye out for when stares and behaviors around you start to become creepy or unwelcomed to your comfort level. This goes for the flirter and the flirtee. Know when enough is enough. Don’t be a creeper, and watch out for creepies.
5) Shower at least once a day when going to a con. Shower. Seriously. Damn.
6) Speak up if someone is getting too close to your personal space / comfort level. (and respect other people’s spaces)
- Cons can be cramped, but known when you are being too familiar with someone’s personal space (usually in conversation), especially when gauging their reactions, and if they keep backing up. Also, ACTUALLY, speak up about someone just getting a bit too close when they are engaging with you.
7) If anyone does do something to you, that you don’t want… or if you notice someone doing that (and presenting an unsafe environment): REPORT IT! YES, SPEAK UP!
- Many cons are starting to have safe spaces. You can also report suspicious activities, and questionable persons to Con Ops, or labeled con staff, as you see them. If you are having issues with the staff themselves, find someone who can help or tell the hotel desk staff. That or call the police if it is something really bad.
Don’t stay silent if you see something happen, or if something happens to you. The majority of people at cons are awesome, helpful, and want everyone else to have a great time, as well as themselves.
I tried to make this list for everyone. There is no victim blaming. People are responsible for their own actions. We should not HAVE to watch out for creeps, but we have to. You can largely, fully enjoy a con without incident, especially with friends, but just keep a mind/eye open about something.
The two biggest issues are going to be when you are in more secluded or private (non-con spaces), with someone(s) you may not know too well. Drinking is the other major thing to watch out for.
I’m sorry if this post got away from me, but I hope I answered your question enough. But to answer more directly: I really think you will be fine as long as you let friends know where you will be, and when; and avoid situations that would put you alone with someone (esp older than you). Oh, and stay away from substances you should not be touching! ;)