Introducing Color Communications Badges
We want to make sure everyone has an amazing and fun weekend at BronyCon, but we also know that it can be overwhelming to meet and be around so many people in such a small space. For 2014, we’re trying something new and we hope that it will have a positive impact on the brony fandom and on the convention community at large.
We’ve adapted the color-coded badges popularized by the Autistic Self Advocacy Network (ASAN) and made them available for people who want to express their communication preferences quickly and non-verbally. By doing this, you can notify everyone whether you want to be approached for interactions or not.
Here’s what the badges look like and what they mean:
- "Come Talk To Me!" A person wearing a green badge is actively seeking interaction. They may have trouble initating conversations, but it’s okay to come up and start a conversation with them.
- "Do I Know You?" A yellow badge means its wearer only wants to talk to people they recognize. Unless you’ve met this person face-to-face before, don’t start a conversation with them. If they start talking to you, you’re welcome to talk back.
- "Not Right Now." If a person has a red badge showing, they do not want anyone to talk to them. They may approach others to talk, in which case it’s okay to respond. But unless you’ve been told you’re on someone’s “red list”, don’t start interacting with them.
If you see someone wearing a yellow or red badge, please respect their wishes. If you are wearing a red or yellow badge and someone is harassing you by not respecting your preference, find the nearest BronyCon staff member immediately.
If you’d like more information on The Autistic Self Advocacy Network or the Color Communication Badges, please visit http://autisticadvocacy.tumblr.com.
To download your own Color Communication Badges, visit http://bit.ly/CommunicationBadges
Thanks a ton to autisticadvocacy for helping us out with this!
If you are an eagle-eyed viewer - and I know you are - you might be wondering why we’re not just using ASAN’s template. After some discussion and testing, we found that there were a few things we wanted to change. Here’s what they are, and why we changed them.
First, we changed the “red” shape to a square instead of an octagon. We got feedback that the octagon was hard to differentiate from the green circle at a distance. The square is easier to see, and still means “stop” in the media world, so it works. We also considered an X.
Second, we changed the “yellow” shape to a horizontal line instead of a triangle. The combination of yellow and triangle on a badge was problematic, so we tried to come up with another shape that would work.
Third, the colors are tweaked so that, even to colorblind people, the colors are distinguishable. These badges are actually specifically not BronyCon’s brand colors, as we intend for them to be used by any convention or event (or person!) who wants to.
Last, it’s not apparent from this picture, but the three badges are actually printed with different colors on each side. There is a red/yellow one, a yellow/green one, and a green/red one. This is because lanyards twist and turn, and we want to make sure that when you display a red badge, your lanyard doesn’t turn and make it into a green badge! You can always order your badges so the right color is on the outside.
I really hope that this is the start of fan conventions picking this up and running with it. We only have a limited supply at BronyCon, but I’m hoping that we have to go out and print more during the weekend!
"But Bronies" what?
Don’t leave us hanging tumblr user @witherwhetherwonder
Wow, you’re kind of proving my point.
I, too, am a fan of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. I’ve watched all the episodes (excluding the most recent season, I haven’t gotten to that yet) and the horrible Equestria Girls movie, and I own a Fluttersly plushie, a ponies coloring book, a Celestia keychain and a printed copy of a picture of me as a pony. I refer to episodes when it’s relevant to the conversation or situation, I use the ponies’ personalities to describe certain friends, and I’ve gotten several other people to get into the show as well. However, I choose not to identify with the fandom because they are associated with some truly horrible people and ideas. I understand the horrible people are probably a minority, but they are what the fandom is known for, and what the show has now become associated with.
It’s supposed to be a kids show. Like, kid-appropriate. But this subset of bronies has sexualized the characters and situations. Pony porn is now a thing. You can buy wifu pillows of ponies sprawled sexily. You can even get fuckable plushies of the ponies. This is just so inappropriate and wrong on so many levels.
There was a terminally ill boy who’s request through the Make A Wish Foundation was to get a character on the show. They did it, and let him even voice the character! The creators and those in charge SPECIFICALLY asked the brony fandom to NOT MESS with that character. And bronies did.
They found a background pony whose eyes weren’t animated to go in the same direction and quickly made her into a big deal, coining the name Derpy, which is offensive to mentally disabled people. They’ve even managed to make her such a big deal you can find tons of merchandise for Derpy too. The character herself isn’t so much a problem as the name and the fact that the fandom uses her to joke about the disabled.
Bronies are associated with “fedoras”, men’s rights activism, and just general douchebaggery and sexism. They are known for having a really skewed view of the world and others, and what they’re entitled to just by being born male. Even if they do a couple good things that doesn’t undo the shitty things they’re known for.
In case you want more things to look at, here are some tumblrs devoted specifically to bronies sucking: http://bronystupidity.tumblr.com/ , http://brony-horror-stories.tumblr.com/ , http://anti-bronies.tumblr.com/
That being said, I think the badge communication system is a really great thing and I hope it leads to better understanding of those with social difficulties, and I hope it leads to others honoring boundaries and being respectful of others. I hope it catches on for other conventions and maybe general social gatherings. People who have difficulty communicating openly with strangers could really benefit from a way of letting others know they don’t want to be approached, autistic or not. I think it could even be a good relating point between those with autism and those who are allistic but aren’t so comfortable around other people. Cons can be really overwhelming even for people who are generally comfortable with others, and if the badge system is successful it would be a way for less-social people to feel more comfortable in a crowded environment. If they know they won’t have unwanted interactions, they might be less intimidated by the con environment and might be more likely to go to a con if that’s something they’ve wanted to do. I really support the original post and the idea of the badges, I am just surprised at the source. I genuinely hope the toxicity of the brony fandom doesn’t affect the success of the project. Only time will tell.
Whoo, boy. Time to dismantle some more rubbish.
I’m going to go through this post bit by bit, as this person is clearly writing from not only a very extreme bias hellbent on clinging to generalizations, but also one that has been horribly misinformed to boot.
For starters, you’re complaining about “the poor children!” while completely disregarding a few things:
- People have been making adult content for cartoon characters literally since animation began. Go google “Tijuana bibles”. It’s been going on for nearly 100 years now. You should probably be aware, too, that this isn’t a male-dominated practice. Go look up anything regarding Transformers, Xiaolin Showdown, or Team Fortress 2, and see how long it takes you to stumble upon gay porn drawn by women. Hell, there are even naked player models for TF2.
- In fact, A lot of the people producing adult content in this fan base are women. Though, I’m sure you’ll just continue to deny this.
- When it comes to mature content, the main places that house it have built-in filters that keep such content from showing up in a google Safe Search. Tumblr blogs marked as NSFW are not searchable, and filters on mature content at Derpibooru need to be manually disabled. The fandom itself actually took it a step further, and initiated a multi-fandom project to make sure that Safe Search is as safe as the name would imply (and frankly, it’s already doing a damn good job). And, let’s face it, hon: You know damn well that no child should be left unaccompanied on the internet without parental filters enabled in the first place. If you think two-dimensional drawings are the worst things one can find on the internet, than you’re astoundingly innocent. You can literally go to Youtube, type in “Budd Dwyer suicide”, and watch a man shoot himself through the back of the head in front of an entire press conference. There are also four of the Faces of Death films on Youtube in full. Frankly, “naughty” ponies should be the LEAST of a parent’s concerns.
- Not only is no one “taking anything away” from little girls (my 12-year-old niece watches the show, and she already owns her own iPhone and iPad, yet she hasn’t found a damn thing yet that has “corrupted” her.), but if it weren’t for the older members of the fandom that are able to provide consumer feedback to the company, there wouldn’t have been an increase in the quality of the toys, and there wouldn’t be anywhere near the amount of merchandise available for it. In fact, it weren’t for these “grown men” you speak of (and, by the way, the members of this fan base now number from between seven to twelve million people. And you honestly believe they’re all adult males? Really?), the show certainly wouldn’t be approaching its fifth season, nor would it have spun off it’s own sub-franchise (Equestria Girls). I’m pretty sure YOU wouldn’t have ever watched the show either, cupcake. You know damn well you wouldn’t have thought to on your own, though you likely wouldn’t have known of its existence in the first place.
In regards to Sylvain Portlance and Stellar Eclipse:
- Sylvain Portlance is a an adult. HE IS 18 YEARS OLD. He is not “terminally ill”. He’s disabled, yes, but he’s not in grave condition.
- The Make a Wish Foundation never made any public statement regarding Sylvain, or bronies.
- Sylvian’s mother has openly apologized about her initial statement, as she was unaware of Sylvain’s feelings on the matter.
- Sylvain himself has openly stated that, as an artist himself, he is open to all kinds of art, and has no qualms whatsoever with whatever anyone decides to draw with his OC.
- There was never “a ton” of porn of Stellar Eclipse. At the time that this occurred, there were only TWO IMAGES, and BOTH BY THE SAME ARTIST.
- The artist had no idea at the time that the character was anyone’s OC.
- It was not the artist that decided to send either of those images over Twitter. Those were the actions of a couple of idiots on 4chan intentionally trying to cause drama.
- The artist immediately removed the images at the mother’s initial bequest, prior to the Twitter apology. They did not leave them up, or continue to circulate them, out of spite.
Regarding Derpy Hooves:
- The word “derp” is not a slur. It is typically merely associated with having a cross-eyed or wall-eyed look on one’s face. At most, it is used when someone makes a mistake out of the ordinary, which - at the core - is exactly what Derpy Hooves was: An animation error.
- Derpy is one of the most beloved characters in the fandom. I have yet to see anyone besides known trolls making jokes about disabilities at her expense. Even if she was disabled, she’d still be just as loved. Are you implying that we shouldn’t allow the possibility of disabled characters in kid’s shows? Because heaven forbid there’s a character someone with disabilities could identify with, especially one that’s as beloved as Derpy, and in complete disregard to her flaws. Derpy is also the plainest-looking of all the ponies on the show, but she’s still loved on the same level as the more unique, more brightly-colored ponies.
- Apparently, Hasbro doesn’t entirely side with the idea of “derp” being a slur either, since the name “Derpy” can be clearly seen not only in online toy listings and labels, but printed on the bottom of the Derpy MIMObot. People working on the show have also publicly stated that the character is going to remain a staple of the show.
Regarding your (seriously pathetic) connections of “fedoras”, “misogyny”, etc:
- Why the “fedora” stereotype is complete nonsense. Written by another woman in the fandom.
- Regarding the allegations of “rampant sexism and misogyny”. The majority of this is literally in the minds of the people claiming it. Need I remind you that someone interpreted an episode about giving less-than-perfect shelter animals a chance at adoption as “rape culture”? You’re also forgetting the fact that assholes exist EVERYWHERE. You could take a random sampling from any part of the globe, and the chances are pretty damn good that you’ll find a few people in that sampling that are less than pleasant. The thing is, though - they would have been that way regardless of what they decided to watch on TV. Nothing “made” them into assholes. They were that way long before they came to know of ponies. The same thing goes for the cries of “racism”. Even when you do find less-than-enjoyable people in ANY group, it is completely asinine to assume that they represent an entire group, especially when that group is composed of millions.
- Why any of the stereotypes about this fandom are nonsense. If you’re old enough to be on tumblr, you’re old enough to not be using any kind of a stereotype. Seriously. That’s fucking childish. Grow up.
- What you claim is “WAAAH! SEXISM!” is actually a bunch of guys standing up for themselves, because they’re constantly being attacked by spoiled, entitled teenage girls who abuse the label of “feminism” in order to be nothing more than, as our current Pope so eloquently put it, “chauvinists in skirts”. These are the same people that demand inclusion into so-called “male-dominated” fields and activities, but who then pitch a glorified conniption fit and scream about “womens’ spaces” being “invaded” the second any male begins to appreciate anything even borderline “feminine”. Heaven forbid average human beings of all kinds appreciate something no one expected them to (least of all themselves), regardless of how much they knew they would likely get made fun of for it. For every person that cries about alleged “bad bronies”, maybe they should be taking a look in a fucking mirror for a change, and start weeding out the rejects that continue to stain the label of “feminism” a distasteful shade of bullshit brown.
- There are ridiculously numerous instances of tumblr “feminists” using the characters to spread ideals that the woman who created those characters is openly AGAINST. I guess you’re not THAT concerned about “the poor children” if you support people that use ponies to spread messages of misandry, the advocating of mass male genocide, and the flagrant use of vulgarity (I won’t even get into the fact that some of them are actually trying to PROFIT off of this as well). News flash, cupcake! Lauren Faust does NOT support the kind of man-hating radical feminism that runs rampant on tumblr. So much so, in fact, that she even wrote an entire episode of The Powerpuff Girls that openly mocks it. The only reason she now regrets writing that episode is because of the backlash she received from the same people whose views it was criticizing. have some. There’s a heaping helping of people being threatened with death and violence for “daring” to enjoy a cartoon.
- People literally make up complete bullshit about this fandom on a regular basis. Someone actually made up a story about the near abduction and sexual assault of a little girl, which was later definitively proven to be a load of crap. That’s more than a little fucked up, sunshine. And then there are also the claims of sexual harassment that allegedly took place at Everfree Northwest of the voice actresses of the Cutie Mark Crusaders that the VA’s themselves openly debunked on Twitter as being complete lies.
Need I even mention the fact that some of them were found to be taking part in exactly the behavior they complain about? The only “entitled” people I see are a bunch of bitter, resentful teenage girls who didn’t get put on “time out” enough when they were little.
The very fact that you linked a bunch of anti-brony sites just goes to show what kind of a person you are. For starters, these are people that intentionally go to places they know they don’t like, digging around for anything that they can twist into a negative. They cherry pick behaviors from an extreme minority, and then put them on display as though they represent all fans. Once again, we’re talking between seven and twelve million people.
And, by the way, the woman who created the series knows very well about the fan base, and is entirely supportive of it, as well as disagrees with the viewpoint of it that you’re currently expressing.
Also, for good measure, here’s a woman that works on the IDK MLP:FiM comic also calling bullshit on brony stereotypes.
The attitudes of people like you seriously make me fucking sick. Even after children are bullied, and after another boy tried to KILL HIMSELF due to being bullied for liking ponies, you still continue to gleefully smear your bullshit on every surface you encounter. Hell - some complete and utter assholes decided to even try to sabotage the charity drive to pay for his medical bills. But no - it’s the “big, mean, BRONIES!” that SAVED HIS FUCKING LIFE that are the “bad guys”. You can go fuck yourself right off the edge of a cliff.
Lastly, this fan base has accumulated hundreds of thousands of dollars for numerous charities worldwide, and have been doing so since the middle of season ONE (i.e., before the existence of an older fandom was even that widely known). What have you done for anyone besides yourself? I’m willing to bet it’s probably a lot of jack and shit.
While bronies have actually accomplished a tremendous amount of good for others, people like you sit behind your computer screens, spewing forth rivers of bile out of your own discomfort with males embracing something even remotely “feminine”. Because let’s face it, sweetie - you know damn well that’s the REAL reason for the insecurities you’re putting on display here.
The people behind this convention have gone out of their way to try to ensure the comfort of others in a way that they were never obligated to do, and all you can think to do is use it as an excuse to continue to demonize others.
Grow the fuck up, and get a fucking life.