Saturday, July 12, 2014

Tally Reviews: Anime Expo 2014

It is that time again, dear readers. Anime Expo 2014.

Now, I had hoped that AX would change after the suggestions I made last year. Alas, I was
wrong. Anime Expo hadn't changed. It just got worse, in my personal opinion.

I'll make this short, simple, and easy to understand.


Pros
Convention staff and volunteers passed out water bottles on day two. Turns out, the drinking fountains broke, and they just didn't want people to know. I honestly don't blame them.
Granola bars were set in swag bags this year. Healthy and a little snack for those who couldn't afford food or were on a budget. It was a smart move.
The guest list I found impressive. The special events as well. Organization was a little better than last year.
The cosplay repair station was brilliant. Helpful and respectful.

Cons
The volunteers and staff were rude and power hungry. There have been multiple reports of the newer staff and volunteers treating attendees like garbage. This includes disabled people. Though, they were informative, but that doesn't make up for the fact they treated people like crap. Rude and disrespectful.

There were technical difficulties day zero. The printers stopped working sometime after three pm. Now, people waited endlessly for this to be fixed. It took eight to ten hours to fix this problem. The line day zero didn't end at Venice. It looped three times. People waited hours in the sun. No tents were put up nor were bottled water passed out. Tents were not put up until day two, as stated in the pros section.
Someone passed out from heat stroke. It took EMTs ten minutes to reach the person. Ten minutes. Volunteers were not helpful in this time at all. Inside the convention center, the air conditioning wasn't on. It was just as hot inside as it was outside.

The disabled policy was not honored. A woman with a disabled son printed out the policy. When she showed it to a worker, the person said they don't do that anymore. They canceled it last minute without informing anyone. Also, the disabled policy was hard to locate on Anime Expo's site, and nonexistent in the guide book. This policy was honored after the woman threatened with a federal civil rights complaint.
There were no registered nurses or trained EMTs on hand. As well as no station for service dogs. By law, there is supposed to be a service dog station, as well as trained EMTs and registered nurses.
The couple with the service dogs were denied access, despite having the correct paper work and were not refunded.

Security was nonexistent. Many con-goers were ghosting, and didn't get caught.
Impressive, cosplayers. Impressive.
Many bypassed bag and badge check though other entrances that were not being watched. In the exhibit hall, many people were stealing from dealer's. Staff and volunteers included. Security was minimal at best.

Over-crowding. The number of attendees rises every year. Many, including myself, say that the con was just too crowded. Can the convention center take possibly ten thousand plus people? Will the convention center get to the point that badges will be limited and none will be sold at door?

Panelists either arrived late or didn't show up at all. Panels started late again. Attendees were told, after the panelists didn't show up, that the panel was canceled, only after they've waited hours in line.

Someone caught folliculitis, an infection in the hair follicles, from a men's bathroom inside the convention center. This is usually caused by either bacteria or by yeast or another type of fungus. The person who caught this said they caught from a toilet seat in the men's restroom near the exhibit hall.

The weapons policy angered many attendees. I still believe that props or weapons make the cosplay. No wood or metal are allowed now. This was a problem with Kill La Kill cosplayers, possibly even Fairy Tail cosplayers. Basically, if we want to bring prop weapons, they may as well be broken. Is this what Anime Expo really wants?

Last year, I gave Anime Expo a 2/5. Possibly a 2.5. This year, it was an all time low. 1/5.

Anime Expo has become so blind with greed that they do not care for their attendees. It is so industrial that all they can see is dollar bills. I firmly believe that AX started going downhill after they moved to Long Beach in 2011. It just became worse after moving to Los Angeles and with management changes.

So, are the volunteers the problem or is it AX management itself? Is their greed getting in the way of seeing what the attendees want? I honestly cannot tell you the answer. However, I will let you be the judge of this.

I pray you enjoyed this, and hopefully this year, I won't get harassed because I did my job.

Until then, readers.

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