This Editorial Is Authored By UsagiMed Intern and Writer Allison Marrero
Trigger Warning for Mentions of Sexual Assault and Harassment
On October 9th, 2014, attendees of New York Comic Con entered the event seeking exciting guest panels, performance events, and of course, coveted cosplay photoshoots. However, fans saw signage at the entrance that permanently changed social expectations across the cosplay community: “Cosplay is Not Consent”
Anime and gaming conventions have been around for decades, giving fans of all sexualities, genders, and identities a space to celebrate the fan cultures they love. Regardless of who they are or where they came from, fans can find solace in conventions. However, finding safe spaces to express yourself isn’t always easy. While LGBTQ+ acceptance has improved significantly in the last ten years, there are still struggles that LGBTQ+ individuals continue to face. Our conventions work relentlessly to keep the space as accepting and forward as possible, through both their policies and precautionary measures.