Kevin Standlee (kevin_standlee) wrote,
Kevin Standlee

Timing Is Everything

Note that some people thinking of serious changes to the WSFS Constitution were holding off last year because they didn't want to be accused of trying to sneak something through at a relatively lightly-attended meeting in Japan. Moreover, with the 2010 Worldcon being in Australia, and Australian Worldcons being significantly smaller than North American and European ones, this year is the one where thoughtful people should be submitting their proposals for change. Remember that changes have to pass in two consecutive years, so you need to start the ball rolling at Denver for ratification in Montreal.

The entire purpose of the two-year ratification scheme is to prevent changes from being railroaded through at a single Worldcon. However, you tend to lack some legitimacy if you are perceived as trying tricky things at relatively lightly-attended Worldcons. Mind you, we had a pretty good crowd at Aussiecon Three to debate the Best Dramatic Presentation split. However, in Japan attendance was very light. I didn't count, but the room itself probably only seated about fifty people, and there were lots of seats available. The video of the meetings looked a little bit like those shots on C-SPAN of representatives lecturing to an empty hall, although in fact it wasn't quite that bad -- people just don't like sitting in the front row or in the line of sight of the camera.

Which gets me thinking about room layout. Given the choice, I'd rather that the entrance door to the room in which the Business Meeting was being held be at the rear of the room rather than at one side. That's because if the door is on one side, then the side of the room nearest the door fills up and the other side stays mostly empty, on account of people are reluctant to walk across the front of the room when the meeting is in session. When the door is in the rear, the tends to fill more evenly from side to side, although the front is usually last to fill. Personally, I prefer a seat near the front on one side or the other, so that when I'm addressing the meeting, I don't have to turn my back on either the meeting or the head table.
Tags: business meeting, wsfs

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