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#1 cards344

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Posted 22 June 2012 - 04:51 PM

I usually dont get autographs at Otakon, because the lines are to long and im usually doing stuff with friends, but this year i really want to get my Pray For Japan Madoka poster autographed by the Madoka Voice Actors that are going to be at Otakon this year, i already got it signed by Producer Atsuhiro Iwakami last year. My question is that is showing up and hour early really early enough to get in line for an autograph, im assuming that alot of people are going to try to get autographs from the Voice Actors from Madoka.

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#2 TruePrussian

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Posted 22 June 2012 - 06:20 PM

Honestly, it really depends on how popular it is and whether or not there is something equally/even more popular happening at the same time.
For a Hetalia autograph signing, I got there a half hour early and I was fine. Sometimes, groups (like Funimation) will give out tickets that allow you to be first in line. Last year, they did that for Hetalia, so I didn't even have to come early (I did anyways just to chat with other fans :PP).
If there isn't anything interesting happening 30 mins-1hr before hand, I would get in line. You can always pass the time by chatting with people.
Now I don't personally know anything about Madoka, but I do know that this year it seems to be popular.
In your case, I would get there at least a half hour early, probably more. It's better to be safe than sorry. Sometimes they cut off lines if they get too long. :/

Edited by TruePrussian, 22 June 2012 - 06:21 PM.

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#3 Dostovei Illuminas

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Posted 22 June 2012 - 08:36 PM

You'll want to get there as early as possible. They should have signs set up to mark which lines are for which guests and a schedule posted somewhere. Ask staff when the lines will open and then hang out somewhere nearby until you can get into line.
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#4 Tigress

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Posted 24 June 2012 - 08:51 AM

Yeah, I don't bother at Otakon unless it's someone I'm willing to stand 4 hours in line for. For Crispin Freeman one year, I arrived an hour early for the 9 am signing, only to find they had already cut off the line. The staff said they'd try to squeeze us in if they had time, but we were pretty much now the 1 pm line. So I sat there for 4 hours.

Later on, I was talking to my friend, who got in line at 7 am. And the only reason he got in was because a lady that was just there with her daughter let him have her place in the line. One of the staff members told me while I was chatting with them in the line: "The convention center opens at 8 am. We cut the line at 8:33." @_@
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#5 Saber-chan

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Posted 24 June 2012 - 11:19 AM

Thanks for the heads up. I've never done the autograph lines at Otakon before, but I'm really wanting to get Jason David Frank's so I can add to the other PR signatures I have.
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#6 ogul

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Posted 07 July 2012 - 09:05 AM

The answer is, it depends. The guests are not machines, and some sign very quickly, while others take their time with it, and while of course we encourage a smooth and fast process, we aren't using chains and whips here (unless the guest requests it, I suppose). Official line-ups will not start more than an hour in advance of each session, although if you show up "exactly on time" keep in mind that your watch migh not be our watch, so getting into the general area a little early is highly advised. This does not mean get there four hours early or anything, but fifteen to twenty minutes is probably wise (meaning if a session is scheduled for noon, plan to be in the waiting area by around 10:45 or so). Many lines for high profile guests do fill to capacity within minutes of when we start filling them. The general waiting area is right around the corner from the Camden Lobby, and we will draw in people from this area when forming lines, so be prepared. There are no "unofficial" lines, you can group wiht other people looking to see the same guests to help avoid confusion, but being "first" in an "unofficial line" is no guarantee of being first in the actual line, there is no "line cutting" until the official line has been formed.

We will also be handing out tickets for the first hundred or so people who don't make it into the initial line, for them to come back once the line has cleared out a bit after the session begins.

We ask you guys to help in this, by making sure that you aren't part of the problem. When your turn does come around, please be courteous to the members behind you in line, and don't take up too much of the guest's time. You might not think that an extra thirty seconds of chit-chat or whatever is a big deal, but when a hundred people do that in a line, that's 50 minutes of time that could have seen another hundred or more people through,m and now those people will be sad.

It's also a good idea to always check in at the Camden Lobby well in advance, just whenever you happen to be in the area, check with a staffer in that area, tell them that getting an autograph for X is very important to you, and ask what steps you should be prepared to take for that. There may be scheduling changes or inside information that's hard to get out in a general sense, but the staffers on the ground should be able to fill you in. Please be aware that staffers in other departments probably don't know much more than you do, everyone at con is pretty focused on their own areas of responsibility, so make sure that you're talking to an Autographs staffer.

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#7 Dostovei Illuminas

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 06:55 PM

You can say that the "official" line doesn't start until a set point but the fact is that people are going to be camping out as close as they possibly can until you open the lines up, thereby forming a de facto line. It doesn't pay to follow the policy as it is set out because unless you show up 3-4 hours early and wait as close as possible, you're going to have a giant mob of people in front of you by the time you show up for that one hour before window. And this creates a gigantic traffic jam since the dealer room line goes through that same area, there are panel/workshop rooms along that hallway, and sometimes there are other mini-events in that corner.

Have you guys thought about at least handing out numbered standby tickets? Person arrives at autograph area, speaks to staffer, asks for ticket for such and such signing at such and such time, gets ticket, then leaves and comes back prior to the start of the session? That way you wouldn't have giant mobs of people all cramming into that area and people could just line themselves up by number once the "official" line starts. And the people who normally stand around for a sixth of the day or more could actually go do other things like get food, attend a panel, sit down for a little while, etc.
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The general rule about people seems to be Attractive, Interested, Mentally Stable, Single: Choose two.

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#8 ogul

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 10:40 PM

We do hand out tickets once the official line space fills up. Having standby tickets at all times during the convention would be too chaotic, with people coming and going at all times, trying to wander in late because they have low numbered tickets while people had been waiting in line for the entire session, that sort of thing.

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#9 Dostovei Illuminas

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Posted 11 July 2012 - 06:00 PM

Tickets seem kind of useless once the initial space fills up, honestly. Depending on the guest and the length of their session and how fast they can sign, the people who get the initial spots are likely the only ones who will even get autographs. Or are the tickets you hand out after the initial space fills up good for priority to a second session, if the guest has one? That might not be so bad... But still. Just telling people "there's no line yet go away" doesn't cut it and it makes for a gigantic human logjam in that part of the convention center.
Faster than a berserking EVA-01, more powerful than a Psyco Gundam Mark II, able to leap Zentraedi battlecruisers in a single bound, I am a Mechaboy!

The general rule about people seems to be Attractive, Interested, Mentally Stable, Single: Choose two.

<JtotheD> do you even know what mecca is
<Loopy1> yea
<Loopy1> a robot that people fight in

#10 Tigress

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Posted 15 July 2012 - 10:16 PM

Animazement has a rather elegant solution, though I don't know if this would work for a con of Otakon's size:

For popular guests, they hand out autograph line tickets at the guests' panels and give them to the first X people in line for the panel. They figure that people going to the panel would value the autograph more than those that just show up for the autograph line. Then when it's time to line up for autograph sessions, people holding the tickets are honored first, followed by everyone else.
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#11 Dostovei Illuminas

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Posted 15 July 2012 - 10:34 PM

I've suggested a system like that before, but for whatever reason Otakon staff seems reluctant to implement it. I really don't understand why.
Faster than a berserking EVA-01, more powerful than a Psyco Gundam Mark II, able to leap Zentraedi battlecruisers in a single bound, I am a Mechaboy!

The general rule about people seems to be Attractive, Interested, Mentally Stable, Single: Choose two.

<JtotheD> do you even know what mecca is
<Loopy1> yea
<Loopy1> a robot that people fight in

#12 ogul

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Posted 16 July 2012 - 11:58 PM

Tickets seem kind of useless once the initial space fills up, honestly. Depending on the guest and the length of their session and how fast they can sign, the people who get the initial spots are likely the only ones who will even get autographs.


This is certainly often true, but not always. We've had lines in which we've cleared all the people in line and most, if not all the ticketed latecomers as well. We've also had lines where we didn't get through half the initial line-ups. The number of people we can fit into a line space is about the average. It really just depends, and we can't really gauge how things will go until the session is half-over anyways. If you get a ticket and come to turn it in, check with a staffer to see how the line is moving and whether the session will run long, they might be able to tell you if waiting in line any longer is likely to be a waste, but we can't predict things any better than a weatherman. We could say "100 people and that's it," but then it would kind of suck if the guest mowed through those with twenty minutes left, and we'd sent hundreds of people packing. Every guest is a snowflake. ;)

For popular guests, they hand out autograph line tickets at the guests' panels and give them to the first X people in line for the panel. They figure that people going to the panel would value the autograph more than those that just show up for the autograph line.


We have a philosophical difference there. We believe that people who go to line up for the autographs value the autographs more, while people who go to the panels value the panels more, and people who go to the panels have already been rewarded by being at the panel, so they shouldn't also have priority for getting an autograph. That's like giving people cake as a reward for eating all their cake. Also, in practical terms, if everyone who wanted an autograph believed that the best way to do this would be to be first in for a panel, then that would just move the massive pre-lines to the panel rooms (which aren't always as well set up to deal with them), and would make the pannels even more packed, in some cases by people that aren't so much interested in the contents of the panel and would not have attended except to get priority access for an autograph. Don't worry though, we have plenty of sessions that are scheduled nowhere near a panel for that guest, so hopefully you can attend one of those.

Tim Ogul
Otakon 2013 Autographs Head


#13 alabaster

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Posted 17 July 2012 - 05:22 PM

...however, for SOME guests, they will give out special passes in their panels for particularly good questions or something like that, and when a guest (or their industry rep) requests that, we usually okay it. I don't recall offhand if any guests this year are doing that, though.

But even then it's not an all-or-nothing thing there.

Edited by alabaster, 17 July 2012 - 05:23 PM.

Jim Vowles
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Previously:
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#14 Dostovei Illuminas

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Posted 17 July 2012 - 06:17 PM

Given the fact that the biggest panel rooms are on the top level of the BCC with not much traffic, I would think line management for those areas would actually be a lot easier. The current autograph line area is just atrocious with all of the through traffic and the dealer room line.

I guess I'm one of those people that wants to eat all of the cake, heh. I value autographs but I also enjoy actually seeing the guest and listening to them speak and asking questions too, other than that 5 or so seconds while they sign my stuff. I really wouldn't want to have to choose between one or the other, and I really don't see how anyone could think that the two activities are mutually exclusive.

Oh well, guess I'm just going to have to endure another weekend of arriving 3 hours early and standing in the "not a line" mob jockeying for position. Hopefully some of those panels are scheduled at a time that I can actually attend them.
Faster than a berserking EVA-01, more powerful than a Psyco Gundam Mark II, able to leap Zentraedi battlecruisers in a single bound, I am a Mechaboy!

The general rule about people seems to be Attractive, Interested, Mentally Stable, Single: Choose two.

<JtotheD> do you even know what mecca is
<Loopy1> yea
<Loopy1> a robot that people fight in

#15 Kirarakim

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Posted 17 July 2012 - 06:41 PM

I suppose this is kind of moot point because Otakon always has at least 2 autograph sessions and 2 panel sessions (well maybe not always but it is usually the case). Hence you don't really have to choose one or the other. Instead you just have to choose which day you want to do one and what day you will have to do the other. And for that I am very thankful (although I do wonder why the autograph session is always directly after the panel, my only guess is it's easier on the guest and well that I respect).

But I do think it is unfair to say you should choose what you value more the autograph or the panel. I don't value the panel or the autograph more, I value the guest, so of course I am going to want both the autograph & to attend their panel. So far I have not had any issue doing both but if I missed out on either I would be upset.

Keep in mind that for some of these guests this might be our one chance to meet them, why should we settle for just half of that experience? That makes no sense.

Edited by Kirarakim, 17 July 2012 - 06:42 PM.


#16 ogul

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 07:23 AM

Given the fact that the biggest panel rooms are on the top level of the BCC with not much traffic, I would think line management for those areas would actually be a lot easier. The current autograph line area is just atrocious with all of the through traffic and the dealer room line.


We don't like that either, but last year we managed to get a lot of that under control by routing all outside traffic around the outside edge of the lobby. Imagine how bad the area would be if we did condone and support official line-ups hours in advance.

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#17 Look over there

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 01:50 PM

Hypothetical scenario:
Let's say that on Friday, I go to the 12-1 PM autograph session for Nanri Yuuka and succeed in getting something signed (perhaps the program guide as I have nothing else). Then later that day I go to the Dealer's room and buy something signable.

Fast forward to Saturday's 1-2 PM autograph session. Assuming that the line doesn't look long/I ask the staff member there and he estimates that I can still get in, would it be bad form for me to attempt to get a 2nd autograph?

#18 alabaster

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 02:54 PM

We take great pains to ensure you have at least two chances to see the guest speak, and at least two chances to attempt to get an autograph.

If we had another full exhibit hall to use, we'd probably look at hte comiccon model of line-ups for autographs -- but we simply don't have the space.

Jim Vowles
Director of Guests & Industry Relations (Otakon 2013, Otakon Vegas 2014)
Member At Large, Otakorp, Inc. Board of Directors (2004, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2012, 2013)

 

Previously:
Chair, Otakon Music Festival (2012), Programming Division Head (2012)
Special Projects Coordinator (2011-2012), Relations Section Chief (2007-2010)
Con Chair Emeritus (Otakon 2006), Vice Chair (2005)
President (2006), Vice President (2005)
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#19 Kirarakim

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 03:08 PM

We take great pains to ensure you have at least two chances to see the guest speak, and at least two chances to attempt to get an autograph.

If we had another full exhibit hall to use, we'd probably look at hte comiccon model of line-ups for autographs -- but we simply don't have the space.


Then I have a question according to the present schedule Tetsuya Kakihara only has 1 autograph and 1 panel session (both on Friday). Do you think he could possibly be getting another panel and autograph session?

#20 ogul

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 10:21 PM

Let's say that on Friday, I go to the 12-1 PM autograph session for Nanri Yuuka and succeed in getting something signed (perhaps the program guide as I have nothing else). Then later that day I go to the Dealer's room and buy something signable.

Fast forward to Saturday's 1-2 PM autograph session. Assuming that the line doesn't look long/I ask the staff member there and he estimates that I can still get in, would it be bad form for me to attempt to get a 2nd autograph?


We have absolutely no problem with people lining up for two autographs. The rule is only one per "time you walk up to the guest," if you come to the second session, no problem there. You can even, if you're first in line and get an autograph, rejoin the end of the line (talk to a staffer about this though, since in many cases there are tickets handed out to people who would then be ahead of you in line). We just want to make sure that when you go up to the guest, you get one autograph, and then leave to allow the next person up. ;)

Then I have a question according to the present schedule Tetsuya Kakihara only has 1 autograph and 1 panel session (both on Friday). Do you think he could possibly be getting another panel and autograph session?


Unfortunately Kakihara-san has a very structured schedule that we have little control over. He does have a second session on Saturday, but both sessions are very tight, so be prepared. There are also some special rules involved in those sessions as far as what you can get signed and special conditions for getting in, we will be posting them in advance and you can always double-check with an Autographs staffer (in a black shirt) in the Canden Lobby at any time of your convenience during the con.

Tim Ogul
Otakon 2013 Autographs Head


#21 alabaster

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 10:58 PM

Sad fact: sometimes getting a rare guest means you have to work within his conditions (or his manager's).

Jim Vowles
Director of Guests & Industry Relations (Otakon 2013, Otakon Vegas 2014)
Member At Large, Otakorp, Inc. Board of Directors (2004, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2012, 2013)

 

Previously:
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President (2006), Vice President (2005)
Grand Vizier of the Ota-Net (& former gofer #12)


#22 evaunit01berserk

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 01:01 AM

I say this, avoid the lines altogether and volunteer for the certain events. Its a good year to be a Madoka or fate/zero cosplayer and volunteer for ACP events. Guaranteed Madoka vol 1 limited edition autograph from Gen and the voice actors attending
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#23 Kirarakim

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 05:40 AM

I say this, avoid the lines altogether and volunteer for the certain events. Its a good year to be a Madoka or fate/zero cosplayer and volunteer for ACP events. Guaranteed Madoka vol 1 limited edition autograph from Gen and the voice actors attending


That sounds nice but unfortunately I don't cosplay.


And too bad about Tetsuya Kakihara having limited time but I understand. I am glad to hear there is a Saturday spot scheduled though, so I will try to plan around it. I am hoping he can sign Gurren Lagann merchandise, if not that will make my decision easy to just go to his panel instead and just try for Gen Urobuchi's autograph this year.

#24 ogul

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 09:50 AM

Ok, here are the rules for Kakihara-san's autograph sessions this year:

Friday Session
100 autographs or 1 hour, whichever comes first, so get there on time, and we will be counting it out and cutting loose people who have no chance of getting in so they don't have to wait around.

Saturday Session
Gundam Session (Tetsuya Kakihara and Michael Sinterniklaas)
This is a Gundam only session, only Gundam merchandise will be signed.
100 autographs or 1 hour, whichever comes first.
Only people with official Bandai-distributed tickets can get in to this one. Tickets can be acquired via:
  • Gundam UC product purchases at the official Bandai booth in the Dealer's Room
  • Given out at the Gundam UC Panel to people who ask questions.
  • First people in the autograph lines, IF they have tickets remaining to give us after those two (no guarantees on that)
If they hand out more than 100 tickets then we can't guarantee that everyone gets a signature, but we'll do our best. So basically, if you want to attend the second one, and you can't get a ticket one of the other two ways, then show up as normal for a signing, we'll try to determine at that point how many people we can get through and cut the rest loose. We will not have significant overflow on this one.

I know this is not the ideal scenario for many of you, but I assure you we're doing all we can on our end about it. I can't say the exact times are 100% nailed down yet, but they are both in the mid-afternoon timeframe, and roughly a half-hour to an hour after relevant panel events.

Tim Ogul
Otakon 2013 Autographs Head


#25 Natsuki chan

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 11:39 AM

Ok, here are the rules for Kakihara-san's autograph sessions this year:

Friday Session
100 autographs or 1 hour, whichever comes first, so get there on time, and we will be counting it out and cutting loose people who have no chance of getting in so they don't have to wait around.

Saturday Session
Gundam Session (Tetsuya Kakihara and Michael Sinterniklaas)
This is a Gundam only session, only Gundam merchandise will be signed.
100 autographs or 1 hour, whichever comes first.
Only people with official Bandai-distributed tickets can get in to this one. Tickets can be acquired via:

  • Gundam UC product purchases at the official Bandai booth in the Dealer's Room
  • Given out at the Gundam UC Panel to people who ask questions.
  • First people in the autograph lines, IF they have tickets remaining to give us after those two (no guarantees on that)
If they hand out more than 100 tickets then we can't guarantee that everyone gets a signature, but we'll do our best. So basically, if you want to attend the second one, and you can't get a ticket one of the other two ways, then show up as normal for a signing, we'll try to determine at that point how many people we can get through and cut the rest loose. We will not have significant overflow on this one.

I know this is not the ideal scenario for many of you, but I assure you we're doing all we can on our end about it. I can't say the exact times are 100% nailed down yet, but they are both in the mid-afternoon timeframe, and roughly a half-hour to an hour after relevant panel events.


That sucks. It really does. Does he not want to sign for the hour on Friday and give as many people a chance to get it instead of this 100 only stuff. it's not really fair to other people who really want his autograph.

and is there any Rules applying to Ai?
Otakon 2012:

Friday: Naoto Shirogane (persona 4)

Saturday: Mizore Shirayuki (Rosario + Vampire)

Sunday: May or May not Go

#26 Natsuki chan

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 11:53 AM

One more thing I forgot to ask, will the head count be on the actually line that starts an hour before, or will the head count be in the overflow line?
Otakon 2012:

Friday: Naoto Shirogane (persona 4)

Saturday: Mizore Shirayuki (Rosario + Vampire)

Sunday: May or May not Go

#27 Kirarakim

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 01:49 PM

That really sucks about Tetsuya Kakihara, I know there is nothing Otakon can do and I am sure you guys did the best you could.

Along with Gen Urobuchi, he was the guest I cared most about. My friend though is the bigger fan so I will let her decide if she wants to do his panel or try for his autograph more on Friday. I know there is no way to accomplish both. I just hope Gundam fans will be nice and wait for the Saturday autograph.

#28 evaunit01berserk

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 01:52 PM

That sucks. It really does. Does he not want to sign for the hour on Friday and give as many people a chance to get it instead of this 100 only stuff. it's not really fair to other people who really want his autograph.


It sounds Bandai regulated, I don't think otakon or Kakihara have any choice in the matter
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#29 Look over there

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 03:05 PM

Regarding the hypothetical I asked earlier, thanks for the answer!

Regarding Kakihara-san, I'd like clarification on which is the Gundam UC panel in which asking a question may get a ticket for the Saturday autograph session. The Gundam Official Sunrise panel is listed for after that autograph session, so I'm assuming that it's the Kakihara Testuya Q&A w/ ANN listed for 3 PM on Friday?

#30 Hinano

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 03:07 PM

Ok, here are the rules for Kakihara-san's autograph sessions this year:

Friday Session
100 autographs or 1 hour, whichever comes first, so get there on time, and we will be counting it out and cutting loose people who have no chance of getting in so they don't have to wait around.

Saturday Session
Gundam Session (Tetsuya Kakihara and Michael Sinterniklaas)
This is a Gundam only session, only Gundam merchandise will be signed.
100 autographs or 1 hour, whichever comes first.
Only people with official Bandai-distributed tickets can get in to this one. Tickets can be acquired via:

  • Gundam UC product purchases at the official Bandai booth in the Dealer's Room
  • Given out at the Gundam UC Panel to people who ask questions.
  • First people in the autograph lines, IF they have tickets remaining to give us after those two (no guarantees on that)
If they hand out more than 100 tickets then we can't guarantee that everyone gets a signature, but we'll do our best. So basically, if you want to attend the second one, and you can't get a ticket one of the other two ways, then show up as normal for a signing, we'll try to determine at that point how many people we can get through and cut the rest loose. We will not have significant overflow on this one.

I know this is not the ideal scenario for many of you, but I assure you we're doing all we can on our end about it. I can't say the exact times are 100% nailed down yet, but they are both in the mid-afternoon timeframe, and roughly a half-hour to an hour after relevant panel events.


Wow I'm so shocked and upset I'm almost at loss for words. Posted Image
So basically if I want Kakki to sign my otome game (which is really the only roles I like him in) I have to miss his panel on Friday and hope I make it in that 100. If i don't make it, I now then have to go buy GUNDAM (which I'm sorry I don't give a crap about) merchandise from Bandai in order to get him to sign anything period.

Great....Posted Image I'll make sure never to buy anything from Bandai ever again if that's how they treat their fans.

Is it possible to have someone hold your place in line? I could have a friend hold my spot while I actually attend the panel. I don't know if that's allowed though can someone confirm this?

Edited by Hinano, 19 July 2012 - 03:08 PM.


#31 serel

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 03:15 PM


Ok, here are the rules for Kakihara-san's autograph sessions this year:

Friday Session
100 autographs or 1 hour, whichever comes first, so get there on time, and we will be counting it out and cutting loose people who have no chance of getting in so they don't have to wait around.

Saturday Session
Gundam Session (Tetsuya Kakihara and Michael Sinterniklaas)
This is a Gundam only session, only Gundam merchandise will be signed.
100 autographs or 1 hour, whichever comes first.
Only people with official Bandai-distributed tickets can get in to this one. Tickets can be acquired via:

  • Gundam UC product purchases at the official Bandai booth in the Dealer's Room
  • Given out at the Gundam UC Panel to people who ask questions.
  • First people in the autograph lines, IF they have tickets remaining to give us after those two (no guarantees on that)
If they hand out more than 100 tickets then we can't guarantee that everyone gets a signature, but we'll do our best. So basically, if you want to attend the second one, and you can't get a ticket one of the other two ways, then show up as normal for a signing, we'll try to determine at that point how many people we can get through and cut the rest loose. We will not have significant overflow on this one.

I know this is not the ideal scenario for many of you, but I assure you we're doing all we can on our end about it. I can't say the exact times are 100% nailed down yet, but they are both in the mid-afternoon timeframe, and roughly a half-hour to an hour after relevant panel events.


Wow I'm so shocked and upset I'm almost at loss for words. Posted Image
So basically if I want Kakki to sign my otome game (which is really the only roles I like him in) I have to miss his panel on Friday and hope I make it in that 100. If i don't make it, I now then have to go buy GUNDAM (which I'm sorry I don't give a crap about) merchandise from Bandai in order to get him to sign anything period.

Great....Posted Image I'll make sure never to buy anything from Bandai ever again if that's how they treat their fans.

Is it possible to have someone hold your place in line? I could have a friend hold my spot while I actually attend the panel. I don't know if that's allowed though can someone confirm this?


Short answer, no it's not allowed, anyone caught line jumping will be sent to the rear.

Here is what is stated in the otakon vitals home page:

Line Etiquette

With so many people attending, waits in lines may last hours. We know that this is frustrating, but it is unavoidable. Please don’t take it out on other attendees or on the staff, and please remember that following the directions of staff members will make the lines smoother for everyone!


When lining up, be sure to check for Otakon Staff holding “Line Starts Here” and/or “Line Ends Here” indicators. We can’t promise to have them up for every event, but please be mindful of them to get you in faster!


NOTE: Members caught jumping in line will be sent to the rear of the line. You will not be allowed to hold places in line. Lines cannot block entrances or exits, so leave a gap in front of the doors as per Baltimore Fire Codes



#32 Hinano

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 03:18 PM

NOTE: Members caught jumping in line will be sent to the rear of the line. You will not be allowed to hold places in line. Lines cannot block entrances or exits, so leave a gap in front of the doors as per Baltimore Fire Codes



Ok thank you for clearing that up. I'll have to have someone go and record the panel for me instead >_>

#33 alabaster

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 05:34 PM

Please understand that in some cases, the guest, or the guest's management, sets conditions that we must live with if we want the guest.

As for complaining about Bandai (or Sunrise) "treating its fans poorly", I think that is an unfair claim. It is exceedingly difficult to get guests of a certain caliber or rarity, and generally you don't get them without a supportive industry partner who can help convince managers and agents that this is more worthwhile than locking the writer in a room with a computer, or having the actor take a paid gig. (That's in addition to some of these folks overcoming discomfort with fame or public appearances, etc.) Companies can only justify the effort to bring guests if they are seeing some kind of return, and if they're bringing guests for a particular release, it's reasonable to link the two somehow.

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#34 ogul

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 05:50 PM

One more thing I forgot to ask, will the head count be on the actually line that starts an hour before, or will the head count be in the overflow line?


Basically, for a normal lime, we fill the normal line spaces (whcih hold up to 200 people), then start handing out tickets for people to come back after the session starts. For this one we'll fill the line spce, count out 100 people in that line, and let the people at the end know that they are at the end. We won't be adding any more people after that, and we'll make sure that the people after that point know that they can probably head out. A handful of people at the tail might want to stick around, just as alternates or whatever, but that's entirely up to them, because this one is going to be pretty rigid.

Regarding Kakihara-san, I'd like clarification on which is the Gundam UC panel in which asking a question may get a ticket for the Saturday autograph session. The Gundam Official Sunrise panel is listed for after that autograph session, so I'm assuming that it's the Kakihara Testuya Q&A w/ ANN listed for 3 PM on Friday?


It should be for the Firday panel, yes. Bandai is the one handing though out though.

Is it possible to have someone hold your place in line? I could have a friend hold my spot while I actually attend the panel. I don't know if that's allowed though can someone confirm this?


We do allow swapping. As long as one warm body is in the line from the beginning, and only one warm body gets one signature, we don't really care too much which is which, just make sure to clear it with a staffer before rejoining the line so we can make sure everything is on the up and up and that the person in line "tags out" properly. The "no holding places" thing Serel mentions is for people who are both in line for themselves and claiming to hold an extra space for a second person so that both can get in, we don't allow that mess. And yeah, no straight line jumping, obviously.

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#35 Hinano

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 07:43 PM

We do allow swapping. As long as one warm body is in the line from the beginning, and only one warm body gets one signature, we don't really care too much which is which, just make sure to clear it with a staffer before rejoining the line so we can make sure everything is on the up and up and that the person in line "tags out" properly.


OH! That's what my question was! I wasn't going to "hold space for someone" I was just going to have a "place holder in line" so i could attend Kakkis panel without missing a chance to get his autograph. So I guess I'd talk to the line staff member and tell them who I am and who's holding a spot for me or something before I leave?

#36 serel

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 08:02 PM

sorry about that, learnt something new. if that is the case, this might come in handy for me too. :)

Edited by serel, 19 July 2012 - 08:02 PM.


#37 Dostovei Illuminas

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 08:57 PM

So are there any super special rules for the other guests' autograph sessions or is Kaki the only one?

Edited by Dostovei Illuminas, 19 July 2012 - 08:57 PM.

Faster than a berserking EVA-01, more powerful than a Psyco Gundam Mark II, able to leap Zentraedi battlecruisers in a single bound, I am a Mechaboy!

The general rule about people seems to be Attractive, Interested, Mentally Stable, Single: Choose two.

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#38 serel

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 09:14 PM

um, read on sat, i don't quite understand, so if they hand out more than 100 tickets the ppl who receive ticket #101+ won't be guaranteed an autograph?

#39 Dostovei Illuminas

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 10:16 PM

um, read on sat, i don't quite understand, so if they hand out more than 100 tickets the ppl who receive ticket #101+ won't be guaranteed an autograph?


Even if you're within the first 100 you aren't guaranteed. It's 100 people OR 1 hour. Whichever comes first. So the way it's written basically if he gets through 100 people in 30 minutes then session's over, bye bye, too bad. Or if it's been 1 hour and he's only signed 80 then those other 20 are SOL. That's my interpretation anyway, but I'm not staff.
Faster than a berserking EVA-01, more powerful than a Psyco Gundam Mark II, able to leap Zentraedi battlecruisers in a single bound, I am a Mechaboy!

The general rule about people seems to be Attractive, Interested, Mentally Stable, Single: Choose two.

<JtotheD> do you even know what mecca is
<Loopy1> yea
<Loopy1> a robot that people fight in

#40 Kirarakim

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 11:15 PM

Another question: I know we can't save spots in the official autograph line but what about in the unofficial overdraft line. I am guessing that is okay right?

Also do the same rules apply for panel lines?

#41 ogul

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 11:37 PM

So I guess I'd talk to the line staff member and tell them who I am and who's holding a spot for me or something before I leave?


Yeah, I mean, basically just let someone on staff know when you're coming and going (hopefully the same staffer, get someone's name so you aren't saying "that one girl told me it'd be ok") so we don't have reason to suspect you were slipping in, we really don't like trying to arbitrate those situations when we can avoid it.

sorry about that, learnt something new. if that is the case, this might come in handy for me too. Posted Image


Ah, we're promoting a whole industry of mercenary bunshin.

So are there any super special rules for the other guests' autograph sessions or is Kaki the only one?


. . .

At the moment, the other session seem to be operating under normal rules. This is why we suggest people ask a staffer on site well in advance of the signing they want to attend though, because changes happen and better to find out hours ahead of time so you can be prepared. ;)

um, read on sat, i don't quite understand, so if they hand out more than 100 tickets the ppl who receive ticket #101+ won't be guaranteed an autograph?


Yeah, I really hope they don't do that. It's their rule, so I would hope that they don't hand out more than 100 tickets, but they might on the grounds that everyone who gets one might not care (like they just wanted a Gundam model or something and got this weird ticket). So. . . if they do hand out more than 100 tickets then I would really hope they would get through everyone who had a ticket and showed up, although I wouldn't expect the session to run longer than scheduled, so that would be the more clear cut-off point. I would ask the people in the Bandai booth about that rule before making any purchases.

Even if you're within the first 100 you aren't guaranteed. It's 100 people OR 1 hour. Whichever comes first. So the way it's written basically if he gets through 100 people in 30 minutes then session's over, bye bye, too bad. Or if it's been 1 hour and he's only signed 80 then those other 20 are SOL. That's my interpretation anyway, but I'm not staff.


Yeah, that's pretty much the rule, although under the circumstances we'll try to keep the line moving as fast as is reasonable, and hope we can expect you guys' help in keeping it that way. Remember to be courteous to the people behind you in line.

Another question: I know we can't save spots in the official autograph line but what about in the unofficial overdraft line. I am guessing that is okay right?


We don't give a . . . nevermind. No, the overflow area is not something we manage, so any unofficial lines that may form you're only responsible to what the people around you will allow, but remember that your place in these unofficial lines have no guaranteed relation to the official lines.

Also do the same rules apply for panel lines?


No clue on panel lines, maybe start a new thread on that one.

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Otakon 2013 Autographs Head


#42 serel

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 11:46 PM

question for mister ogul: in my experience sometimes staffers/gofers (don't quite no which) in attendance themselves have been baffled and unsure of what is going on. and have given me wrong info or vague answers. do gofers and staffers wear diff clothes?

#43 Tachibana

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Posted 20 July 2012 - 03:39 AM

I'm not sure if this is better suited for this topic, Hirano-san's topic, or an entirely new topic but, here we go. Given her only autograph session is after her concert, is it occurring within the concert room? Or will the people at the concert who also want autographs have to make a beeline for the typical autograph area?

It doesn't matter how I feel, but, to me, I don't really mind either way since, while she's a brilliant vocalist, both my sister and I are much more interested in her voice acting career... So if we have to attend the concert, great, we get to hear her sing. If not, well, we can always just hang around the authograph area until the line opens. Not too much else to do on Sunday for us besides last minute Dealers Room and AA shopping.

Also, since the only autograph session I've ever attended at Otakon was the special K-On signing they had last year, and they had posters for signing... Will guests have something to sign if you don't bring anything for them to? I mean, I'm sure I could scrounge up something like an autograph book or print off a picture of a character or the guest themself if not....

...


#44 Kirarakim

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Posted 20 July 2012 - 06:51 AM

Sorry for the stupid question about the over draft line. I figured that was the answer but considering this delicate situation with Tetsuya Kakihara, I just wanted to make sure

As for my panel question eh I guess I will just ask when I am in line. :)

#45 ogul

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Posted 20 July 2012 - 10:16 AM

question for mister ogul: in my experience sometimes staffers/gofers (don't quite no which) in attendance themselves have been baffled and unsure of what is going on. and have given me wrong info or vague answers. do gofers and staffers wear diff clothes?


Yes, staffers are people wearing official Otakon shirts. They are black, they say "staff" somewhere on the front, and usually have some fun pictures on the back (the exact design has changed from year to year, so I many staffers end up wearing a different style each day). They will also have staff badges which look different than member ones, usually vertical and with their picture on it (although I'm not sure how, exactly, this year). Gofers are just normal members, like yourself, that have chosen to help us out, so they will be dressed however they want. We'll try to keep all our gofers updated with the latest info, but they tend to come and go over the course of the day so they aren't always as well informed as the staffers are. And also keep in mind that the Autographs staffers will all be in the Camden Lobby pretty much the entire time, other Otakon staffers in other departments might not know any more than you do about what's going on in Autographs, just as we don't know about a lot fo what's going on in the other departments. When in doubt, ask. Posted Image

Just so you're aware of how we're setting up, it will be a bit like how we got it last year, where we'll have several gofers asigned to hang out near the inside corner of the Camden Lobby, to prevent unnnecessary travel in and out of that area (all through-traffice should go around the outside edge of the lobby, along the windows). We should also have staffers roaming back and forth along that area, and we'll be pulling gofers out as we need them for other tasks, but that will be our sort of "home base" during the con.

I'm not sure if this is better suited for this topic, Hirano-san's topic, or an entirely new topic but, here we go. Given her only autograph session is after her concert, is it occurring within the concert room? Or will the people at the concert who also want autographs have to make a beeline for the typical autograph area?


We'd been discussing this internally, the answer is that the autograph session for her will take place in the same room as the concert, right after it ends.

Also, since the only autograph session I've ever attended at Otakon was the special K-On signing they had last year, and they had posters for signing... Will guests have something to sign if you don't bring anything for them to? I mean, I'm sure I could scrounge up something like an autograph book or print off a picture of a character or the guest themself if not....


Sometimes they do, we won't really know in advance what materials they may bring with them, but I wouldn't count on it. If you don't have anything special to bring with you, and they don't bring anything with them, then we suggest you get your guidebook signed, most people either get their bio page signed, or there is usually a blank page in there specifically for autographs. Just know what you want to get signed before you get up to them. Posted Image

Sorry for the stupid question about the over draft line. I figured that was the answer but considering this delicate situation with Tetsuya Kakihara, I just wanted to make sure


Heh, it was a fair question though.

Edited by ogul, 20 July 2012 - 10:17 AM.

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#46 loy@bandai

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Posted 22 July 2012 - 01:54 AM

Hi all!

I will be one of Kakihara Tetsuya's escorts during Otakon. I've notice there has been a few threads and some discussion regarding Kakihara-san's activities so I signed up for this BBS. I would like to reiterate some stuff that has already been said as well as answer any other questions you may have. As you may have noticed, Kakihara-san has very strict rules in place for his autograph sessions.

As stated by ogul, both sessions will be limited to 100 people OR 1-hour, whichever comes first. That is, as others have said, if he finishes all 100 autographs in less than an hour, the session will end. The session will also end if 1-hour passes even though 100 people did not receive an autograph. Each person will be allowed only one item to be autographed. He will only sign official merchandise that he has worked on. We will not allow fanart or anything of the like to be signed. We will be monitoring all items and will have final discretion if an item can be signed. If you are unsure about your item, do not hesitate to ask any of his escorts present during the signing. No photography or videography will be allowed.

Friday (2012.07.27) session:
This will be an open autograph session. As long as he worked on it and it's official merchandise, it's eligible to be signed. if you do not have an item, your Otakon Program Guide usually has space for autographs and would make an excellent souvenir.

Saturday (2012.07.28) session:
This will be a ticketed autograph session and limited to Gundam UC (Unicorn) merchandise only. Please note that this is a joint session with English Voice Actor Michael Sinterniklaas. They will both be signing the same single item that is brought to the session. We will not allow one item for Kakihara-san and a different item for Michael. We will be distributing exactly 100 autograph tickets.

The rules have changed slightly since we initially informed Otakon on how to obtain the tickets. To obtain tickets to this session:
  • Purchase Gundam UC Product from our booth (IND15) inside the exhibition hall.
  • First-come, first-serve basis afterwards to the people in the autograph line if tickets are still available.
Originally, participation by asking questions at the Q&A would have resulted in receiving a ticket. At first, the Gundam UC Episode 5 Screening/Q&A was scheduled before this autograph session. However, due to scheduling conflicts, the time of the screening changed and ended up way after the session. Therefore, we had to remove that method of receiving an autograph ticket. As of now, those two are the only ways to get a ticket to the session. Should you be a part of the first-come, first-serve section and do not have a Gundam UC item, one will be provided for you.

As always the standard disclaimer is these rules are subject to change without notice. If anything is unclear or if you have questions regarding this topic, let me know and I will do my best to answer them. If you have any questions during Otakon, I will be present at our booth from time to time and you are free to ask me there as well.

#47 Dostovei Illuminas

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Posted 22 July 2012 - 02:24 AM

I guess my only question is why you're being so strict with the autograph sessions. I can understand wanting to promote Gundam Unicorn and all, but the very small number of autographs being given out and the time restriction both seem a lot stricter than what we're accustomed to seeing. Does Kakihara-san have issues with crowds or meeting people? At the very least if you have him scheduled for an hour then you might as well use the entire hour even if you go past 100 people. If you look at it, with an average time of 20 seconds per autograph you could go through 3 people in a minute, which would mean you could get to 180 people in a full hour. I don't really understand the reasoning for limiting it to a flat 100 signatures.
Faster than a berserking EVA-01, more powerful than a Psyco Gundam Mark II, able to leap Zentraedi battlecruisers in a single bound, I am a Mechaboy!

The general rule about people seems to be Attractive, Interested, Mentally Stable, Single: Choose two.

<JtotheD> do you even know what mecca is
<Loopy1> yea
<Loopy1> a robot that people fight in

#48 alabaster

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Posted 22 July 2012 - 10:20 PM

Loy may answer as well, but typically we've seen these sorts of requests come from the guests' management or agent. In some cases, they may be worried about too much physical exposure (a seiyuu getting a head cold can be devastating, and they are often already coping with 13 hours each way in airplanes.), or simply the guest may be overwhelmed by large crowds in person. In other cases it's just a quirk. Either way our option is to accept the limitations or give up on the guest.

Jim Vowles
Director of Guests & Industry Relations (Otakon 2013, Otakon Vegas 2014)
Member At Large, Otakorp, Inc. Board of Directors (2004, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2012, 2013)

 

Previously:
Chair, Otakon Music Festival (2012), Programming Division Head (2012)
Special Projects Coordinator (2011-2012), Relations Section Chief (2007-2010)
Con Chair Emeritus (Otakon 2006), Vice Chair (2005)
President (2006), Vice President (2005)
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#49 kiki

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Posted 23 July 2012 - 10:49 PM

Hi all!

I will be one of Kakihara Tetsuya's escorts during Otakon. I've notice there has been a few threads and some discussion regarding Kakihara-san's activities so I signed up for this BBS. I would like to reiterate some stuff that has already been said as well as answer any other questions you may have. As you may have noticed, Kakihara-san has very strict rules in place for his autograph sessions.

As stated by ogul, both sessions will be limited to 100 people OR 1-hour, whichever comes first. That is, as others have said, if he finishes all 100 autographs in less than an hour, the session will end. The session will also end if 1-hour passes even though 100 people did not receive an autograph. Each person will be allowed only one item to be autographed. He will only sign official merchandise that he has worked on. We will not allow fanart or anything of the like to be signed. We will be monitoring all items and will have final discretion if an item can be signed. If you are unsure about your item, do not hesitate to ask any of his escorts present during the signing. No photography or videography will be allowed.

Friday (2012.07.27) session:
This will be an open autograph session. As long as he worked on it and it's official merchandise, it's eligible to be signed. if you do not have an item, your Otakon Program Guide usually has space for autographs and would make an excellent souvenir.

Saturday (2012.07.28) session:
This will be a ticketed autograph session and limited to Gundam UC (Unicorn) merchandise only. Please note that this is a joint session with English Voice Actor Michael Sinterniklaas. They will both be signing the same single item that is brought to the session. We will not allow one item for Kakihara-san and a different item for Michael. We will be distributing exactly 100 autograph tickets.

The rules have changed slightly since we initially informed Otakon on how to obtain the tickets. To obtain tickets to this session:

  • Purchase Gundam UC Product from our booth (IND15) inside the exhibition hall.
  • First-come, first-serve basis afterwards to the people in the autograph line if tickets are still available.
Originally, participation by asking questions at the Q&A would have resulted in receiving a ticket. At first, the Gundam UC Episode 5 Screening/Q&A was scheduled before this autograph session. However, due to scheduling conflicts, the time of the screening changed and ended up way after the session. Therefore, we had to remove that method of receiving an autograph ticket. As of now, those two are the only ways to get a ticket to the session. Should you be a part of the first-come, first-serve section and do not have a Gundam UC item, one will be provided for you.

As always the standard disclaimer is these rules are subject to change without notice. If anything is unclear or if you have questions regarding this topic, let me know and I will do my best to answer them. If you have any questions during Otakon, I will be present at our booth from time to time and you are free to ask me there as well.



Thanks loy@bandai for posting more details about Tetsuya Kakihara-san's autographs sessions!
It must be an honour to be an escort for a Japanese seiyuu~ :)

I would like to ask you a question too, about giving gifts for guests, so what are the rules for Kakihara-san?
Can we give fan gifts to him during the autographs session? or it has to be outside the session's time? if so, when is the best time?

Also, I just notice a "Fairy Tail" anime screening on Friday 10am...
Is that in original Japanese with English subtitles, or the English Funimation dub?

Thanks again!

P.s. I'm new to this convention~ so please forgive me if I ask too much questions or if it has been answered before~ ^^"

#50 Shadow_otm

Shadow_otm

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Posted 24 July 2012 - 12:23 AM

So umm... let me get this right... if I buy a piece from the Bandai booth and happen to get one of these 100 tickets, and then I can't get two different items signed one by each person, because I really only want Mike to sign something for a friend that can't be at Otakon, so.... can I even go in just to get a signature from Mike? He doesn't even has his own autograph session outside of this one...

Now don't get me wrong, I didn't like a system where it seemed people were taking 10 items in, taking 3 pictures ontop of that, and autograph lines never move... but this system seems rather... meh
I'll think of something to put here later.