I've been to at least a dozen events over the past two months -- baseball games, hockey games, packed rock concerts, movies, an auto show, etc. At most, a low single digit % of attendees wore masks, and I mean really low, like 1-2%.
So maybe you could argue that gamers are a different lot, but that doesn't explain Gary Con, where masks were required and yet had at best 50% compliance in the gaming areas, and maybe 20% wore them in the common areas where they were not required. I sat at three tables where the players started by taking a vote, and all the masks came off. If a majority wanted masks to continue, compliance would have been much higher.
I don't know why they don't just go with the CDC recommendations. I don't see why it's that hard.
Most people seem to be more interested in engaging in culture war than in following the actual recommendations.
I'd like to propose something.
In the event that the con-wide mask requirement is removed, I suggest giving GMs the power to decide whether or not they want to require masks at their tables. Maybe allow "masks required" or something to be added to the event descriptions (not sure if it's too late in the process for that part to be practical though).
Personally, I hope the requirement stays in effect, but if it doesn't, the ability to keep it in effect at my table is something I'd appreciate.
Too many people think this a culture war and not about doing what's best in an niche situation where regular rules don't apply.
Masks and vaxx makes the convention safer for everyone, I understand them wanting to run the safest convention possible. I'm not sure if the CDC actually had specific recommendations for tens of thousands people from around the world crowding into a large indoor space for four days.
Pax East just had a vaxxed and masked convention about Gen Con size and unfortunately one staffer passed away after contracting COVID, a stark reminder that we are not done with the pandemic yet, despite how much I wish we were
"We get a lot of feedback from stakeholders — exhibitors, GMs, attendees — and as of now the majority want us to maintain our policies."
It's not just attendees being asked.
As mentioned San Diego Comic-Con the largest pop culture event which had 135k attendees attend in 2019 is allowing unvaccinated with a clean covid test within 72hrs. Gencon is now allowing unvaccinated with medical exemptions and a clean test attend. Why not open this option to everyone not boosted or unvaccinated, a clean covid test within 48hrs of attending? If Comic-Con can do it which is much larger why wont Gencon? Even in very Liberal Chicago you are starting to see the conventions offer the testing option.
Yeah I have a hard time believing the majority want a mask requirement, there was no survey recently. I do believe there is a very vocal minority that I'm sure have reached out GC. Not to mention one of the biggest sponsors is very pro-mask and vaccine and already stated their area will only allow vaccinated people, not sure how that will work with the medical exemptions. Look at Garycon not many followed the mask mandate rules and the vocal minority were complaining very loud that they should not remove the mask mandate before the convention, when they thought it was up for consideration. Most people do not want to wear mask anymore that's why you don't see the majority of people wearing them unless forced to. In indiana the only time I see mask wearing is at the hospitals.
Another question I have is Gencon requiring all the employees/ temp workers of the convention center working during Gencon to be vaccinated? It will be really messed up to only allow vaccinated attendees, but the workers they are interacting with are not held to the same standard. I know the convention center does not require their employees to be vaccinated. I get nothing is final but todays blog post tone makes it sound like the policy is probably not changing much, I hope I'm wrong.
Because that's not what they want. Really simple. The people who are vocal to GC are the ones they're listening to. GC figures they will lose less money by mandating masks vs making masks optional. And we all know what happens when masks are optional; people don't wear them. Again, very simple.
So the only way I see this changing is if people start dropping their hotel rooms and badges. And even then, I'm not sure it will change the policy, since the people who remain are the people they're listening to, or those who choose to put up with it, just so they can game again. The true test dates are June, 13th, the last day to cancel a room and June, 17th, last day for badge refunds.
I just don't see it changing though.
"Large gatherings bring together many people from multiple households in a private or public space. They are often planned events with a large number of guests and invitations. They sometimes involve lodging, event staff, security, tickets, and long-distance travel. They might be conferences, trade shows, sporting events, festivals, concerts, or large weddings and parties."
Really don't understand why they just don't go with masks/vaccines. It is obvious that is what Gencon management wants and there is zero part of me that thinks they are conflicted, studying data and gnashing teeth over this choice so, announce it and let the attendance chips fall where they may. If everyone wants it, there will be limited cancellations. I feel like they are kicking the can past a 1 night cancellation fee date/ticket refund date knowing full well there will be a subset that will cancel.
Gencon has no intentions of changing the status since day one, just look at the surveys they gave us for last year and how biased toward pro mask the answers you could choose to the question were the no mask choice was mysteriously missing from the survey I know because I looked for the option on a few of the questions.
Last year it was that there listinging to the cdc but now that the cdc is saying different there going off and doing there own thing. If vacs are being required I don't see why mask are a must wear. I was a pro mask person myself but with the vaccine the death rates remain low even when the reinfection rates go up. IMO there is no intention to change even if things do improve which they have(yet no change)
What's the policy on kids under 5? (No vaccine available)I have to bring my 8 month old and he will definitely not be vaccinated or wearing a mask.
FAQ: Vaccines are not available for children under the age of 5. Can I still bring my child to Gen Con and purchase a child wristband?
Oh, and by the way, if it doesn't change THIS year, you might as well get used to the idea of it never going away. Nothing will have changed between this year and next year in terms of contagion rate, or people who are susceptible, or are immuno-compromised. The only thing that will have changed is that people will just get used to the idea of having to mask up at GenCon in perpetuity.
The language of the blog post makes it pretty clear that they are going to do their own science and disregard the CDC guidance.
My group has been holding out hope that there would be a clear update or GC would just go the way of most large gatherings: mask optional and no vax requirement, but with the continued vagueness and not clear on how it will be managed, we are close to dropping. We are a group that has vax and unvax, but decided if we all can't go, then none of us will, and just plan our own gaming weekend.
GC says they are different than large sporting events and need different requirements, but that is not true. The sporting event might not last days, but you are in a confined space for hours straight, packed, in the seats, concessions, and bathrooms along with that group of people cheering (and singing if you go to soccer) nonstop.
GC really needs to just stop using vague words like "anticipate" and state what they are going to enforce and how. The how is as important as the what, because either there will be lots of lines waiting to be checked each time you try to enter a Con space or it will be one check to get your badge sticker or bracelet, and then you might as well not pretend.