Comic-Con Criticized for Not Protecting Women in Costume

Geeks for Consent have launched a petition to demand Comic-Con 2014 organizers create a detailed anti-harassment policy

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Women in costume are everywhere on the Comic-Con convention floor - whether in uniform as part of a marketing ploy or an individual in cosplay.

    When the ladies of Comic-Con 2014 hit the convention floor in costume this July some will walk away feeling uncomfortable and violated according to online group Geeksforconsent.org.

    The group is now blaming Comic-Con for not doing enough to protect women in costume.

    “They’ve been harassed, either sexually with pretty verbal harassment, or physical groping, or being followed around the convention space” said Rochelle Keyhan, creator and director of Geeks For Consent.

    Keyhan believes Comic-Con is perpetuating the problem by refusing to create a detailed anti-harassment policy.

    Comic-Con & Sexual Harassment

    [DGO] Comic-Con & Sexual Harassment
    As NBC 7's Steven Luke reports, an advocacy group is accusing Comic-Con of not doing enough to protect women in costume. (Published Tuesday, Jun 3, 2014)

    She created an online petition with more than 2,200 signatures as of early June.

    Comic-Con spokesperson David Glanzer defends current policy, calling it “broad by design."

    “The fact of the matter is the broadness of the policy allows us to take more action than if we were specific. If we said ‘A, B, C, D was not allowed, what if somebody tries to circumvent that?’” said Glanzer who points to the heavy security and police presence as proof Comic-Con doesn’t take harassment claims lightly.

    “The reports we’ve gotten have been few and far between."

    Geeks For Consent says they’ve been tracking online reports of harassment and wants Comic-Con as the largest convention of its kind to lead by example with more a detailed public plan.

    “Their harassment policy is more vague than the policy restricting the pets people can bring” said Keyhan.