Kevin Standlee (kevin_standlee) wrote,
Kevin Standlee
kevin_standlee

Fandom Culture Clash in Israel

cogitationitis reports about her experience at Israel's Icon SF-type-event (calling it a convention may not be the right term), with a huge follow-on discussion -- sometimes a bit snippy -- between organizers of the event and critics of it.

For my money, the best comment was this one:
Icon doesn't really want to be Worldcon when it grows up -- it wants to be Dragoncon.
I think that sums up one of the biggest modern fannish culture clashes in a single sentence. Personally, I take Worldcon and the smaller events organized on the same model (including conventions such as Westercon, OryCon, BayCon, Boskone, and suchlike, just to name a few) as what I personally like and what I'm willing spend my time, effort, and money helping organize. But to a lot of people, DragonCon (or possibly ComicCon) is the pinnacle of SF convention success, and the "conventions" they organize emulate what they see as best about those events.

There's nothing inherently wrong with a 40K or 250K pop-culture event like DC or CC. They're just not really something that interests me personally. This, incidentally, is why I'm not critical of people who complain that a 5K Worldcon is "too big." But it is interesting to me that Worldcon is "too big" to people whose tastes tend to run to the 100-person event, and "irrelevantly small" to people who think you'd better be turning over people in the low five figures before you deserve the time of day.

I do, however, object to people saying, "You can't really be the World Science Fiction Convention unless you're the biggest in the world." I think that is -- possibly unconsciously -- trying to equate size with quality, and that's a false analogy -- otherwise, cheap jug wines would be the "best," and even a non-drinker like me knows that's not true.
Tags: culture clash, fandom, worldcon
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