Kevin Standlee (kevin_standlee) wrote,
Kevin Standlee

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Two Bricks in the Wall

I am pleased that I counted as two of the 100 items in The Drink Tank issue 100. One was an LOC and another was a 100-word item (not including the title) about why I do the things I do in fandom. You'll need to go read the issue to find out more.

I've already sent an LOC for the next issue, on the topic of what's driving Worldcon membership costs and ideas for bringing it down to where fans who are complaining about the cost -- including people whose fannish credentials cannot be credibly questioned and who have been in fandom since before I was born in 1965 -- can afford to attend. Do any of these ideas have much of a chance of happening? I doubt it. Worldcon is in some respects as bad as Microsoft Office products -- bloated by feature creep, and at least twice as expensive as people who pay for it and use it think it should be for what it delivers. However, if you try to remove any one thing, the people who want that one thing start yelling at you.

If I had the resources to do it (that is, an independent income, so I didn't have to work for a living), I'd be very tempted to launch a bid that cut the Worldcon down to the size where the per-member price would probably be around $50 or. It would embody a bunch of the things that those trufen who say Worldcon must return to its roots, and nothing else. And the bid would lose, lose, lose, because another bid promising a "traditional Worldcon like we've come to expect" would get all of the votes. But at least I could point to it as an example of why the idea won't work under the current system. You might say that with a popularly-choosen convention, we get the Worldcon we deserve.

The last time I recall a bid running on a platform of "cut costs and return to our heritage," it was Niagara Falls in 1998, and they came dead last in a four-way race, I think. They were probably lucky to avoid the fate of the New York in '95 NASFiC bid, which finished fourth in a field of two.
Tags: worldcon
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