• Daniel Goodland May 9, 2017 at 12:10 pm

    (Also, as a note to the Con Committee, in case any of you read this post: if you’re making a panel about gender terminology in SF/F, it’s not a good idea to have it populated only with white cis women. Ad Astra has a noticeable diversity problem, and in future instances I recommend that the con make an effort to ensure that future panels on similar topics have queer/non-binary representation.)

    So… you’re suggesting they should have dropped that panel because they could not force enough diverse people to attend? It would be far more constructive for you to help out and invite all those you know to also attend and take part at Ad Astra… these are guests, and I doubt they can control over who does and does not want to attend – let alone want to be a panelist. I know they make the effort.

    • Christina May 9, 2017 at 8:20 pm

      It’s not a question of “forcing” queer, trans, and/or non-binary people to attend. It’s a question of recognizing that a panel on this topic would benefit from those kinds of voices, and making an effort to reach out to the communities in question to see if there are people willing to participate.

      The same goes for race. You could probably count the number of people of colour in attendance at Ad Astra on 2 hands and have fingers left over. Does that mean that there are no PoC authors or spec-fic fans in the GTA? No. It means that the con, for whatever reason, is not perceived as a welcoming place for those attendees to be.

      For context: I submitted panel suggestions to the con using the regular submission form, and never received anything in response. Hell, I wasn’t even originally part of the panelist list – I had to email them directly after they sent their first mass email to their original list of panelists, and I was added because I took the effort to email them directly, rather than use the site’s submission form. If I, as a person with a relatively high amount of privilege, had to take that extra effort to ensure that I could be a panelist, I can guarantee that many others would have decided it wasn’t worth it to make the effort in the first place.

  • #AdAstra2017 | Julia E. Muldoon May 10, 2017 at 1:50 pm

    […] ground and was willing to take the conversation where it needed to go.  She also wrote an amazing blog post about her experience of ad astra this year.  I feel you when you talk about the gravitational pull you felt at the con, and the […]

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