Oh dear! The beginning of 2020 is not what we all hoped for. With the pandemic around, we had to really change a lot. Conventions are being cancelled or postponed until summer/autumn. Smaller gatherings are also being cancelled (or moved online). And I believe I am not the only who misses meeting with people… Luckily, a few interesting geeky initiatives appeared.
Internet for the rescue
This post is not going to be about how sad I am because of the events that were cancelled. We all experienced similar things and I think we need to stop concentrating on what was cancelled and instead we can try to look at what interesting things are happening. I won’t concentrate on online sightseeing, libraries, museums etc. Instead, I want to write about geeky things that are happening online..
The first initiative I want to mention is Concellation 2020. I am not sure how to define it…. It is a group on Facebook that is full of us, both the congoers and conrunners. Quite a lot of posts are appearing there and it is hard for me to keep up to date with all of them, but people there are talking about books, ask to share pictures of pets and so on. Some want to share their art while others want to see what you are doing. Many of us keep joking – about conrunning or more general issues. Some posts go viral while others – not so much. Yet, what is really important to me, is a positive vibe. I was sceptical at first. I was afraid the group would focus on the negative part of our current situation, as in “so sad we cannot go to xxx”. Instead, the group makes me smile. One post asked for our favourite pictures from conventions we visited and while I was looking through my archive, I found a lot of pics I completely forgot about. And they all brought great memories. Later I found a post where we were asked to show what geeky things we made and while I was looking for the picture of my Dublin mug, I remembered that it was featured on the Dublin 2019 website and it made me really happy.
Concellation has its own logo and there are also t-shirts available. One of the members created a beautiful badge and everyone makes it a vibrant and cool community. I am really happy I am a part of it.
While Concellation is an awesome place to be, I also spotted other initiatives online. Kwarantankon is a Polish online con created (or at least I see it that way) to support geeky dealers – some of whom lost the possibility to sell their handmade art. It is not just an online shop on Facebook; there are certain programme items: discussions, online streaming and even competitions. I must admit I haven’t spent as much time there as on Concellation but I will take a closer look for sure. Luckily, this online convention lasts until April 3rd).
Konline is yet another convention that is going to take place on the Internet. It was announced very recently and it starts today. It is prepared by Avangarda – the association that runs ZjAva convention. The event will be concentrating on RPG for sure. What surprised me is that the first international guest was already announced: Jason Morningstar will participate in the programme. Most cons in Poland cannot afford to invite guests from abroad, but since this con is online, it seems that this may be easier. I really hope I’ll manage to participate in the event.
One of my favourite cons, Lajconik organized by the SFF club I am chairing, was scheduled for April. Because of the current situation we decided to go online. The event will be called LajcONik and I am really curious on how it will go. I simply cannot wait.
So what is to come?
I am not sure what we can expect next. As everyone else, I do hope that the situation will stabilize soon enough and we will be able to get back to more standard approach towards conventing. For now, I am happy that many things are happening online. They help me to connect to my big, wonderful fandom family and I hope it may also be the same for you.