Describing what PAX (Penny Arcade Expo) is to someone who has never been to a PAX can be a bit of a challenge. It’s a convention, sure, but it’s also a whole lot more than that. PAX has become a
bi tri-yearly pilgrimage for gamers and creatives, a utopia where they can go and be surrounded by other people similar to themselves… oh, and also play some video games.
We love conventions, but sadly we can’t attend them all. Last year, we were lucky enough to have our friend and contributor Stumpynat head to Seattle in order to cover (and enjoy) the first annual GeekGirlCon. This year we’re happy to say that she’ll be helping us out yet again. If you didn’t get a chance to check out Nat’s coverage of the event, you can do so HERE. If you’re curious what GGC is all about, here is some information straight from the source.
Geek Girl Con: “And as GeekGirlCon ‘12 approaches in just a few days, we want to dissect what it means for geek girls to support one another. We believe there is an important underlying message at the core of this phrase—one that emphasizes support over cattiness, encouragement over judgment, collaboration over competition.
Women and girls today live in a society where they are constantly encouraged to care about how they look rather than what they know or what they do. Much of mainstream television showcases female relationships where women compete with one another, attack or belittle one another, or otherwise get ahead by undercutting other women. Other media and advertising bombard us with messages that our bodies aren’t good enough, that we aren’t whole without larger bra sizes, smaller tummies, or perfect skin.
It is no surprise these constant messages impact our behavior. Women can also be harsh critics of other women. How often do we hear things like, “I can’t believe she’s wearing that,” or “Lay off the ice cream,” or bond with other women by “hating” someone for being prettier, skinnier, or younger?
But we know there is a different path, a path that recognizes we should be supporting each other. That’s particularly true in geekdom. We all know that women can face rejection, hostility, or harassment in video games, online communities, science, and technology. So how can we start solving this problem?
We can be encouraging fellow geeky women and girls to find out where their passions truly lie, to find something to believe in that goes beyond the harmful media messages. Instead of telling a woman she needs to go away because she isn’t enough of a geek, we should be excited she wants to venture into our world in the first place. We should be inviting these women—friends, coworkers, family—to Doctor Who orBuffy marathons, or passing along our favorite comic books or craft projects. We should help each woman find her niche, niches, or just learn about something we know and love—and celebrate it with her.
Think about your best friend in the world. Think about what makes them a good friend. Perhaps it’s the fact that they’ll tell you when you have something in your teeth. Or maybe they are a great friend because they are the kind of person who will share the last piece of cake with you.
Chances are, this person has remained a best friend because they believe in you. They believe in your potential, they support you in your endeavors, and they celebrate your successes.
So, for those who are new to GeekGirlCon, we say “welcome,” and “we believe in you.” Whatever you love, whatever you “geek out” about, we think it sounds awesome. For our veterans, thank you for helping us create a community full of best friends who believe in and celebrate one another.
We hope to see you at our convention—it is one of the best ways we can show the world that geek girls exist, and we support each other.” (SOURCE)
If you’re interested in attending GGC, take a look at some of the great panels and guests they have lined up this year (HERE).