Convention Tips: Convention Etiquette
Updated: Sep 26, 2019
A lot of times, we talk about how to make conventions better for ourselves. But there are a lot of things we can do to make cons better for everyone else. If you want to keep your friends, and maybe make some new ones, read on about the basic rules of convention etiquette.
—Shower. Please. For the love of God. I know it’s tempting to go full-throttle and no one wants to miss anything, but showering makes the experience better for everyone.
—Always ask permission before taking someone’s photo. Most people love the opportunity to pose. If you intend to post your photos online, be sure to get permission for that as well (and it’s great if you can get the person’s name to give credit).
—Never, ever touch someone you don’t know without permission. Not even if this person is perfectly cosplaying your favorite costume ever. Do not touch their costume. Do not touch their body. Do not stroke their wig. Do not glomp. Just don’t do it. Respect other people’s personal space.
—Be aware that while there are some people (and cons) who think line saving is fine, there are other people (and cons) who find it very rude. You can be heckled by others in the line, or you could be thrown out completely (depending on the convention). Just plan ahead, get there early, and wait in line for what you want. If you **must** participate in line-holding, make sure you check the con rules and bring treats for the people who are behind you in line to help smooth ruffled feathers. Chocolate is nice. Be aware that the longer the line, the less okay this is going to be.
—Remember that the celebrity guests are just people. It’s really weird for them to be constantly propositioned by their fans and asked intrusive personal questions. I’ve never seen a man blush as hard as when an elderly woman asked Ted Raimi, during the middle of a panel, if he wanted to come back to her hotel room. Have fun, but respect the human as well as the character.
—Don’t ask a celebrity to sign a bootleg. Bootlegs represent lost income (nothing in the world is free, after all) for those people, and asking them to sign something pirated is like rubbing salt in the wound. This will not make you any friends.
—If you see a celebrity guest at dinner, restrain yourselves from rushing them and begging for a selfie or autograph. Let them eat.
--Keep it down in your hotel room, especially late at night. Most people are fine with noise up to a certain point. Noises from room parties shouldn’t go past 2, and the farther you are from these parties, the earlier you should cut the noise, especially if you’re in a different hotel entirely. Similarly, keep it down until at least 8 in the morning. People are hungover.
Basic rules of decency, guys. Help make the con experience great for everyone!