Code of Conduct
Here at Gen Con, we’re in the business of having fun. After all, it wouldn’t be The Best Four Days in Gaming if we didn’t all have a great time together! And as every gamer knows, a thorough rulebook is the key to everyone having a good time, so here are our rules for a safe and fun Gen Con. If you have a question about a certain policy or guideline, be sure to read through all of our policies, but if that still doesn’t answer your question, email [email protected]. Game on!
- Follow all show policies, venue rules, and staff directions
- No running, jumping, throwing, or other unsafe shenanigans
- Support each other in maintaining a safe environment
- Report concerns to Gen Con staff
- Don’t harass anyone
- Respect everyone's physical and social boundaries and personal property
- No stealing, cheating, trolling, or griefing
- Make a friend
- Play some games
- Remember to eat, sleep, and shower
Everyone should observe commonsense rules for behavior, personal interaction, courtesy, and respect. Harassing or offensive behavior will not be tolerated. Gen Con reserves the right to revoke, without refund, the membership and badge of any participant not in compliance with this policy.
Gen Con is committed to providing a safe environment where everyone is treated with dignity and respect. Harassment or unwelcome conduct, whether verbal, physical, visual, or in any other form, is strictly prohibited. Gen Con’s anti-harassment policy applies to all persons involved in the operation or attendance of the convention or Gen Con-sponsored event. Gen Con will not tolerate harassment of anyone by anyone, including participants, vendors, hosts, or Gen Con staff.
Gen Con defines harassment as any behavior that threatens a person or group or produces an unsafe or non-inclusive environment. Harassment includes, but is not limited to, offensive verbal comments or non-verbal expressions related to gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, age, or religious beliefs. Harassment also includes, but is not limited to, sexual or discriminatory images in public and quasi-public spaces (online and offline), intimidation, stalking, following, harassing photography or recording, sustained disruption of talks or other events, inappropriate physical contact, and unwelcome sexual attention. Harassment may take the form of comments, epithets, slurs, jokes, teasing, display or discussion of written or graphic material, repeatedly standing too close to or brushing up against a person, or giving gifts of an unwanted or sexual nature. Advocating or encouraging any of the above is also considered harassment.
Harassment at Gen Con does not include respectful disagreement or critique offered in good faith. Gen Con reserves the right to alter or broaden its definition of harassment at its sole discretion.
No one should tolerate any conduct of this type. Should you experience or witness harassment, you may choose to take any of the following actions:
- If you feel safe and comfortable doing so, ask the offender to stop. Whether the offending behavior is intentional or unintentional, expressing your discomfort to the offender directly often puts a stop to that conduct.
- Leave the area. While this may be unfair to you, it is sometimes best for your safety and well-being if you to choose to leave the area, especially if you feel uncomfortable around the offender or their conduct. After separating yourself from the conduct, you may still choose to take additional actions.
- If you are comfortable doing so, ask a Gen Con Captain or staff member for help. You can find Gen Con Captains (wearing black Event Team vests) at Event HQs, in the Show Office, at the Customer Service kiosks, and roaming the halls.
- Report the incident formally to Gen Con staff, on-site or online. You may go to the Show Office or any Event HQ to file an incident report in person. This can also be done anytime during or after the show by emailing [email protected]
- Contact the police or other appropriate authorities. Your health and safety are our most important concern. If you require immediate assistance from law enforcement, medical services, or other governmental entities, please do not hesitate to contact such services directly.
Based on any informal or formal complaint or report of harassment, Gen Con may take the following steps. Note that this list is not exhaustive, and other appropriate action may be taken as necessary.
- Read and investigate all reports. Gen Con documents and reviews all reports. Reporting parties may be contacted for further clarifying information, unless they have submitted a report anonymously or asked to not be contacted further. Note that Gen Con will not share the results of these reports with anyone, including the person who filed the report, unless required by law.
- Intercede if and when appropriate. Gen Con staff may take immediate action to address harassment concerns, including but not limited to, escorting participants to a location in which they feel safe, refunding tickets, cancelling events, moving event locations, requesting participants leave a specific area, removing offenders from the event, or banning offenders from the show. Bans and removals may be on a temporary basis, for the duration of the show, or permanent.
- Contact police and medical authorities when appropriate. If, upon review, Gen Con finds that relevant local government officials should be notified, Gen Con may contact such entities and/or share confidential information as required by law.
- Sanction participants based on our investigations. Gen Con participants found to have violated the Code of Conduct may be subject to sanctions, including but not limited to:
- Verbal or written warning
- Requiring the participant to avoid any interaction with, and physical proximity to the party or parties involved
- Temporary suspension from any Gen Con sponsored events or online services
- Permanent ban from any Gen Con sponsored events or online services
- Immediate expulsion from the convention without refund
- Reporting of the incident to the appropriate authorities
Gen Con's Code of Conduct applies in all physical and online spaces within Gen Con's control. This includes, but is not limited to, event venues, Pop-Up Gen Con locations, Gen Con social media pages, streamed programming, and Gen Con forums. Occasionally Gen Con is made aware of behavior by participants (or potential participants) that has occurred outside of Gen Con — either online or offline — and is a gross violation of our Code of Conduct. These actions need not occur in Gen Con-affiliated spaces to be considered for sanctions by Gen Con. These include, but are not limited to:
- Individuals who have not attended Gen Con but have a history of abusive behavior and/or known incidents that took place outside Gen Con that may cause risks to a participant’s safety, or which may contribute to a hostile or non-inclusive environment at the convention
- Gen Con participants who have been reported for outside incidents, including, but not limited to, conduct at other conventions, threatening or abusive behavior online, or assault
We understand that, at times, participants will have disagreements or interpersonal conflicts that do not necessarily escalate to the point of harassment or abuse. Gen Con will not arbitrate such disagreements—we ask that you please leave these conflicts at home.
Gen Con continuously strives to create a safe and welcoming space. Should you have any suggestions for how we can improve, please email us at [email protected]
We care about creating safe spaces to play games together, at our events and yours, so we've published our Code of Conduct and Anti-Harassment Policy under a Creative Commons License. This means that you can freely use and adapt them for your convention or event. Have questions about how to use these policies? Email us at [email protected].
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.