Declassified: Regarding guest interview requests and community panels/events

As our guest list continues to grow, we hope attendees understand the organisation and planning required to ensure every visitor to TFNation has the opportunity to meet every one of our special guests. Most of those attendees will simply want to greet the artist/writer/voice behind their favourite character, and get something signed, but others will want more time to conduct interviews for podcasts, blogs or just personal projects.

While we applaud all creative projects that benefit the community, the volume of requests being received (or rather being bypassed) by attendees has made it prudent to publish our existing guidelines on guest interviews, panel requests and other projects. This is for the good of all our attendees and based off of previous incidents that have affected other conventions.

GUEST INTERVIEWS
We ask that attendees do not organise guest interviews during the conventions hours: Friday evening to Sunday evening inclusive.
Once the convention is finished, you are free to approach guests but please note that they may have commitments to convention work still to finish. This applies mostly to our comic artists, the demand for which keeps them often extremely busy.

Previous conventions have seen official events delayed, or even cancelled, because guests have been sequestered for a random fan interview (the official timetable ignored) and the convention staff having no knowledge of this. It often takes considerable time, cost and organisation to bring these guests over to meet their UK fans, therefore we want to be fair to everyone.
Do not fret if you can't get an interview then and there. Instead, use the contact to arrange a future audio interview (via skype or other apps) and you can chat for longer, at a time when the guest isn't so knackered.

COMMUNITY PANELS AND EVENTS
We previously invited any attendees who wished to hold their own event to contact us with specific details so we could look to add them into our plans. Now, as the event approaches, our schedule is pretty much full so, to anyone who has yet to formally send us details, please be aware we may not have the space/time to agree to any late requests.

During the year TFNation is asked numerous times if fan panels are possible (to which we always say yes, given that a formal request is made) but without that formal request, nothing is on our books. Last year two panels were in this situation and one was left unable to proceed.

Given the natural enhanced focus on attendee safety, we need to account for our workshop rooms and spaces, and ensure areas are locked outside of scheduled events. With every event utilising an aspect of Hilton equipment, they too need to ensure that they know exactly what is happening in every area of our convention area, for health and safety compliance. Two reasons that sum up why we must set rules to protect attendees. This also leads into a related topic...

OTHER EVENTS AND IDEAS
We plan our event with traders and displays for most of the year, likewise our Forge applicants go through a fixed process before approval and numbers for both are carefully considered. We put that work in to ensure there is the right mix of options for visitor and trader alike, as well as making sure our various halls are accessible to attendees and conform to health and safety rules.

If you have an idea for something you wish to wish to present, offer or run, please feel free to contact us... but, with much of our structure set with two months to go, be aware we may no longer have the space, time or resource to accommodate you. If you are passionate enough about your idea then we expect you to be pitching for TFNation 2018 on the 14th of August, working with us to see if we can support your idea with advance notice.

PRESS PASSES
We have received a lot of press pass requests recently, from both established media and new web groups. While we are flattered so many people are taking an interest in us, unless we already have worked with a group or organisation, there is little chance we will be assigning passes now.

While we strive to build the event, promotion BEFORE the event is vital, and we are blessed with the support of broadcasters, podcasters, youtubers and bloggers who help spread the word throughout the year, through their love of the franchise. Given that those groups cover the event in-detail (along with countless youtubers, blogs and social media posts) you can understand why we would need a new applicant to prove himself before suddenly being granted access over other people.

To those wanting more interaction with TFNation, through any of the aspects mentioned above, please don’t think of this as a brush-off, but as a challenge... a challenge to contact us after this event, and work towards next year with us. Be it interviews, panels, presentations or press, you can be a part of TFNation 2018. We have already started on work for that event, so you can see why we appreciate those who, likewise, plan ahead.