New York— Following a spate of embarrassing incidents involving industry professionals behaving poorly at comic book conventions, ReedPOP, the world's largest producer of pop culture events, has announced it is implementing several safety measures to protect attendees at this week's New York Comic Con (NYCC). In a press release issued over the weekend, ReedPOP detailed several of the safety protocols they plan to utilize in order to keep both professionals and fans free from injury this week including: using glass barriers to prevent direct contact with editors, banning alcoholic beverages within 20 feet of creators, and posting signs outlining how to safely interact with anyone who works in the comic book industry.
Spence Fankleman, Global Junior Director of ReedPOP, hopes that the new measures will protect both fans and creators alike and plans to make sure every attendee receives a copy of 'con rules' prior to be granted admission into the Javits Center. "Safety is our number one priority at NYCC and the new glass barriers, shock collars, and armed guards will help ensure that fans can safely see all their favorite writers, editors, and artists, without any concern of being bitten or otherwise groped," said Fankleman in a conference call to several major comic book websites early Monday morning. "Many of these professionals are solitary creatures not used to being around large crowds or bright lights and can react unpredictably when over stimulated – these measures are as much for their safety as for the public."
Fankleman was of course referring to several incidents from past cons including harassment, biting, and even one disconcerting episode involving feces throwing. By educating members of the public on how to keep a safe distance from members of the comic industry, restricting flash photography, and also not allowing creators alcohol, ReedPOP hopes to reduce reported incidents within national safety numbers. For professionals with past histories of aggressive or disruptive behavior, ReedPOP also plans to limit public viewing time and restrict their access to Twitter during NYCC.
"Many professionals simply react poorly under stress and can act unpredictably," explained Saint Louis Zookeeper Lauren Syker. "This stress can display itself in a number of ways including abusive twitter pics, attempting to grope other professionals at after-parties, or just non-specific douchebaggery. We see it very frequently with editors who seem to be very confused how to interact with other human beings at a basic level."
Never one to just make quotes up, The Outhousers sent a reporter to the Javits Center to speak with fans already queued for entry to NYCC. While many were seemingly unaware of past safety violations, those interviewed said they felt safer knowing ReedPOP would be taking extra precautions this year. "The safety rules should really help both professionals and visitors keep in mind how to act in public," said an anonymous Deadpool cosplayer who declined to give his real name. "Just like in 2014 when I had to be reminded that it wasn't ok to grope or harass female cosplayers, writing things on giant signs is a good way to remind adults how to interact in public."
Despite all of the precautions, ReedPOP has promised that this year's Comic Con will still be all about fun and entertainment. The safety precautions should not affect any of the planned panels this year nor the family-friendly creator performances taking place in the pool at both 11 and 3 pm. "We've taught several creators to perform tricks this year including a very impressive swimming routine involving some of the top names in comics," said Fankleman. "Bring your kids, sit back, and watch our trained staff throw buckets of chum in the water to get those creators dancing."