catherineldf: (Default)
[personal profile] catherineldf
Or, here we go again.
My friend Monica Valentinelli has withdrawn as one of the GOHs at Odyssey Con next month due to well-founded safety concerns about the presence of Jim Frenkel at the con, on the con com and in programming. You can read her blog statement as to why she felt she had to do this. I support Monica completely and think she made the right choice. At least one other pro, Patrick Tomlinson, has also withdrawn in support. I have heard one of the vendors had pulled out as well but awaiting confirmation before I post a name.
Now, gonna say another thing. As many of you know, I had a front row seat to WisCon's epic mishandling several years back of Elise Matthesen's harassment complaint against Jim Frenkel. Many of the same people who now run Odd Con used to be involved with running WisCon. They gaslighted, prevaricated, blathered about redemption narratives and ableist b.s. and in some instances, lied outright to protect Frenkel personally back then. And in a more than a few instances, they worked with other folks to circle the wagons to protect the con from allegations they didn't want to be true since after all, Frenkel was a former GOH, a local hero and buddies with a lot of folks. Those choices destroyed a bunch of friendships and it almost destroyed WisCon. Protecting and promoting serial harassers needs to have consequences. Folks reporting them need to have support. Let's learn from WisCon (and Readercon before that) and do better. I sincerely hope that if there are saner heads left at Oddyssey Con, they are able to turn the con around. I certainly won't be considering attending until they do.

In the meantime and in the following post due to Dreamwidth challenges with on phone postings, Sigrid Ellis has given me permission to post a couple of emails that she exchanged with Odyssey Con about Frenkel and another fun dude who was also asked to leave the WisCon con com. I'm posting these to support Monica as well as to forestall the inevitable responses that range from "This can't be true!" to "How does this keep happening?" It is real and this is how.

Date: 2017-04-12 10:27 pm (UTC)
sillylilly_bird: (Default)
From: [personal profile] sillylilly_bird
I'm the vendor that pulled out. They had no response to my email except to issue me a refund.

*waves hi* Elise says she's going to introduce us officially this WisCon :)

My email:
I was digging around on the con website to learn more and found that Jim Frenkel is part of the con organization. This will be my first time at OddCon and I had not known he was such a large part of it.

This is a man who has been banned from a number of cons due to his decades long track record of misogynistic behavior and assault [his targets have included 2 of my friends]. I will not support a convention with my money or my presence when said convention has no apparent problem with a guest who makes so many of the female attendees feel unsafe.

Is he going to be there? If so, I'm going to be pulling out of the Dealer's Room and would like a refund.

Please get back to me by the end of this week [April 14] as to whether or not Mr Frenkel is going to be in attendance.

Thank you.

*note, I corrected a typo here. Also, unfortunately, the number of friends who have been his targets is at least 3. I'm sadly sure there's more.
Edited Date: 2017-04-12 10:29 pm (UTC)


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