GeekGirlCon Blog

How Bullying is Portrayed in Media

A person sits on a concrete floor alone, their head is hidden in their arms. They're wearing a maroon beanie, black long-sleeve shirt, and jeans. They are barefoot.

Guest post by contributor Frankie Wallace.


Bullying has been portrayed in movies, television shows, plays, and more for years. There’s a reason for that, too. Simply put, “art reflects reality.” Bullying is such a popular topic in media because it’s so prevalent in today’s society. Just how much of a problem is it? According to the Bureau of Justice, about 160,000 teens in the United States have skipped school due to bullying. 

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Holiday Gift Guide for the Geeks in Your Life

*jingle bells*

Do you hear what I hear? Could it be the dulcet tones of the approaching holidays, sneaking up to ambush us with last minute shopping panic? Why yes, I think it just may be!

Description: Jack Skellington flings his arms wide, scattering snowflakes about.
Image courtesy of Giphy

No matter what holiday you celebrate, it is always enjoyable to give to others. Seeing their faces light up as they open a gift chosen with care an affection is undoubtedly one of the best parts of the season. To help you spread the love, I’ve put together this list of gifts that may just put you on the nice list with the geeks in your life.

Note: we are not getting any type of compensation from retailers to feature any of these products. These are simply items that I have found fun and useful.

Amazon Kindle: $49.99-$299.99

Description: A front and back shot of a Kindle Paperwhite featuring the prologue of a book.
Image courtesy of amazon.com

For the bookworm, I would recommend a Kindle. There are a lot of perks of having a Kindle, and one of the biggest ones I have found is that I always have something to read because I can carry thousands of books with me wherever I go. There are multiple models to fit just about any budget. You can get a full blown ten inch tablet or a simple book reader. Whatever your lover of books desires, you are sure to find something that suits them just right.

My Personal Pick: All-new Kindle, $89.99 

Check them out here: https://www.amazon.com/s?k=kindle&ref=nb_sb_noss_2

Williams Sonoma Harry Potter Ultimate Silicone Spatula Set: $31.96-$39.95

Description: Four spatulas of varying designs and sizes featuring the Hufflepuff house crest.
Image courtesy of williamssonoma.com

Do you know someone who whips up absolute magic in the kitchen? Make their holidays extra enchanting with this handy set of four Hogwarts House themed silicone spatulas! The set includes two mini spatulas, one medium spatula, and a flat flexible nylon spatula emblazoned with your favorite house crest. The spatulas are heat resistant and dishwasher safe. If you don’t think you will use all four, you can also purchase individuals.

My Personal Pick: Hufflepuff, $31.96 

Check out the whole Harry Potter collection: https://www.williams-sonoma.com/search/results.html?words=harry+potter

SOCKS!

Description: A set of five no-show socks cleverly designed as different cats.
Image courtesy of hottopic.com

Yes, socks! Hear me out—socks are inexpensive, useful, and fun! Gone are the days when socks were possibly the most boring gift ever. You can find all kinds of silly socks in a variety of styles, from no show, to crew, to fuzzy, to knee high, in fun designs. When your friends don their fun and funky socks, they will think fondly of the friend who is keeping their tootsies toasty.

My Personal Pick: Kitty Cat No-Show Socks 5 Pair, $14.90 from Hot Topic

Find some more sock inspiration here: https://www.hottopic.com/accessories/socks/?q=socks

Friends Trivia Quiz Cards: $7.12, https://www.boxlunch.com/

Description: A box containing a Friends themed card trivia game.
Image courtesy of boxlunch.com

Channel your inner Holiday Armadillo and gift your friends with the gift of Friends! How many categories of towels does Monica have? What does Chandler do for a living? Test your knowledge of this iconic show with your own gang for a good time this holiday. 

Check out more Friends merch here: https://www.boxlunch.com/search?q=friends&sz=60&start=0

Give to a Charity

Description: Max the dog joyfully distributes presents.
Image courtesy of Giphy

Sometimes you really want to give someone a gift, but they insist that they really don’t want anything. Maybe they feel like they have a lot of stuff already, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t give them a heartfelt and meaningful gift—you can donate to a charity in their name. Find a cause that is meaningful to them and reach out to local organizations to find out how you can help.

My Personal Pick: The Northwest Organization for Animal Help (NOAH) Center, https://www.thenoahcenter.org/

What are your favorite holiday gift ideas? We would love to hear them!

Happy Holidays Everyone!

Rebecca Anglesey
“Rock On!”

Redefining What It Means to Age as a Woman in Media

Post by guest contributor, Kate Harveston.

Many societies venerate the stereotype of the crone. Wisdom pours from her ancient eyes. Her face is a roadmap of experience and understanding. 

But if you tune in to any American television station, you’ll see bevels of younger beauties and hardly a female face over 60. When shows do portray older women, they pigeonhole them as evil stepmothers or meddling mothers-in-law. We need to redefine what it means to age as a woman in media and start treating wrinkles like badges of honor, not targets for the Botox needle!

Why Are There Negative Stereotypes Against Older Women? 

Think back to the fairy tales you loved most as a child. What do Snow White and Cinderella have in common? A wicked stepmother. Even Bugs Bunny featured the crone mystique as the decidedly ditzy Witch Hazel. If early writers needed a villain, an older woman fit the bill. 

Part of the negative stereotype stems from ancient times. Before the Romans arrived, older women were seen to hold the healing wisdom of generations. They prepared everything from cold remedies to love potions. However, in the latter years of the Roman Empire, the Romans subjugated these women, fearing their teachings interfered with those of the Church. Some evidence now suggests interactions with pagans weren’t always violent. Nevertheless, it was the beginning of the end for the worship of the older female generations.

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#GGC19 Photobooth Roundup!

Is it hard for anyone else to believe that GeekGirlCon was a full two weeks ago? Maybe it’s because the daily routine of work, sleep, and Con-less days has set in; maybe it’s because this fall has felt like it’s lasted about two second, but I for one am already feeling nostalgic for the whirlwind of panels, workshops, cosplay contests, DIY Science Zone-ing, Exhibitor Hall-perusing, merch-purchasing days of the Con.

The perfect solution to the post-Con blues? Looking through all of the awesome photos from the #GGC19 photobooth! Taken by veteran GeekGirlCon photographer Sayed Alamy, the full photobooth album is up on Flickr now.

While I highly recommend looking through them all to fully relive the Con magic (and get excited for next year!), here are just a few of my favorites:

Image Description: Three people cosplaying as Hogwarts students.
Image Description: Two people cosplaying as ghostbusters.
Image Description: Two people cosplaying as Belle and Gaston from Beauty and the Beast.
Image Description: Four people cosplaying as the Heathers, from Heathers.
Image Description: Two people cosplaying as Princess Bubblegum and Marceline.
Image Description: A person wearing a beanie, denim jacket, glasses, and a t-shirt that reads “Black Girl Magic.” They are holding their hands on their hips.
Image Description: Three people cosplaying as King Trident, Ursula, and Ariel from The Little Mermaid.
Image Description: A person cosplaying as General Leia Organa.

Hanna Hupp
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Past Featured Contributor Banned from Future Participation in GeekGirlCon

Response to Sexual Assault Allegations against Hope Nicholson

On Nov. 20 Hope Nicholson, one of GeekGirlCon’s past featured contributors, identified herself as the assailant in an alleged sexual assault. GeekGirlCon has a zero-tolerance policy against sexual harassment and assault, therefore Nicholson is banned from any future participation in GeekGirlCon events. 

GeekGirlCon had no knowledge of Nicholson’s actions prior to Nov. 20, as all featured contributors go through a strict vetting process. This is to ensure respect for all attendees through the creation of safe spaces. Violations of these safe spaces have never and will never be tolerated by GeekGirlCon.

GeekGirlCon’s mission is to foster continued growth among the geek community by celebrating and honoring the legacies of under-represented groups in science, technology, comics, arts, literature, gameplay, and game design. GeekGirlCon representative Kristine Hassell Director of Community Engagement said “Since we learned of these allegations, we removed Nicholson from our list of Featured Contributors and will not have her back at any event hosted by GeekGirlCon. We are examining our panel selection process to look for ways to improve. Should the criteria be revised, we will announce any changes to panel processes for 2020.”

GeekGirlCon celebrates and honors the legacies of under-represented groups in science, technology, comics, arts, literature, gameplay, and game design. We do this by connecting geeks worldwide and creating an intersectional community that fosters the continued growth of women and their allies. Embrace your inner geek with us, email press@geekgirlcon.com or visit geekgirlcon.com.

For more information or to set up an interview with a representative from GeekGirlCon, contact Ceilia Gutentag at pressrelations@geekgirlcon.com. 

GeekGirlCon
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Thank You From GeekGirlCon

Another amazing GeekGirlCon is in the books. This year’s convention was definitely my favorite so far (though to be fair, I’ve been saying every year for nine years—and will continue to say it in the years to come). We had amazing panels, spectacular featured contributors, delightful musical performances, and most importantly an awesome, engaged community of attendees (that’s you!)

Whether you attended those panels, lifted your voice at a sing-along or concert, showed off your cosplay creations, played a game, met your favorite author, or found new treasures in our exhibitor’s hall, you contributed to GeekGirlCon. You continue to surprise and delight us each year. We do it for you, but we couldn’t do it without you.

Thank you for sharing your world (and your weekend) with GeekGirlCon. We’ll see you soon.

With love,
Sharon Magliano Feliciano
President, GeekGirlCon Board of Directors

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GeekGirlCon ’19: A Retrospective in Staff Selfies

First off, from everyone at GeekGirlCon, thank you so much to our Agents, attendees, contributors, and exhibitors. As always, we just cannot do GeekGirlCon without you. Thanks for making the magic with us.

Before we beginning peppering your feeds with some more formal recaps of the weekend, I wanted to bring some cheer to this Monday we’re all experiencing while coming down from our con high with some staff selfies from the weekend. So peruse these, reflect on the pure joy of the weekend, and share yours with us using #GG19.

Amy on Friday, pre-setup.
Julie and Beth setting up and definitely not violating even ONE safety protocol.

Teal Christensen
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#GGC19 Sunday Preview

Can you believe it’s Day 2 of GeekGirlCon 2019? Since GGC is one weekend long, that means it’s the last day as well. This is the first year I’m working at the con, and I have to say it’s so satisfying seeing everyone sharing their passions and favorite fandoms through panels, cosplay, performances, and art work.

While this is the official last day of #GGC19, keep the spirit going after the convention ends by using the hashtag #ShareYourWorld. Each one of you, whether you’re a volunteering or attending, makes GeekGirlCon so great!

Kalyna Durbak
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The GGC19 Exhibitor Hall: A Sneak Peek

GeekGirlCon ’19 is in full swing, and we’ve packed so much into one weekend that it can be hard to see and do it all. BUT, if you’re a person who likes things of any kind, and you haven’t had the chance to pop up to the Exhibitor Hall on the fourth floor yet, you should absolutely check it out.

Not convinced? Here’s just a tiny look at everything you can see, do, & buy:

Caitlin Foskey
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Celebrating Pokémon GO Community Day at GeekGirlCon 2019

Description: A young GGC attendee shows off their stuff dressed up as Pikachu!

The theme for our Con this year is ‘Share Your World,’ and I wanted to take this opportunity to share a bit of mine. I am a huge Pokémon fan, and I have been an avid Pokémon GO player from the very beginning. Coincidentally, Novembers Community Day happens to coincide with day one of GGC! It is a true melding of my worlds.

For any who don’t know what Pokémon GO Community Day is, for a few hours on one day a month, a specific Pokémon is featured and spawns more frequently in the wild. The game also offers other bonuses during this time, such as increased instances of shiny Pokémon, experience boosts, and special moves for evolving the featured Pokémon.

Todays featured Pokémon was Chimchar!

Description: A shiny Chimchar jumps in an attempt to avoid capture.

Living in a suburb north of Seattle, I generally have my preferred Pokémon hunting grounds near to my home. Today, however, I had the chance to hunt in the city around the Washington State Convention Center. Just walking around the Con, I could tell that the love for Pokémon was strong, which is great because the area surrounding the convention center is chalk full of gyms and pokestops.

Description: A Pokemon GO map displaying a plethora of pokestops, gyms, and Pokemon to be caught.

Hunting for Chimchar in downtown Seattle was a new experience for me this time because I set out on my own. Usually, I go out in my neighborhood haunts with my boyfriend to celebrate Community Day. The environments are familiar, the best spawn places are well known, and I have the company of my partner. Today, he was out of town visiting a friend, and I hit the crowded and less known streets of Seattle to catch as many Chimchar as I could.

At first, I was scared. I’m very shy by nature and I also deal with bouts of extreme social anxiety from time to time. The area wasn’t what I was used to, and I didn’t have my partner to lean on if I felt uncomfortable. The people around me were not those I had come to know by sight in my own neighborhood through many Community Days together, but strangers.

Despite these facts, the spirit of the day began to wash away my fears. I saw three people meet on a corner (holding two phones each) and begin to discuss their goals for the event. As I continued to walk, I would make eye contact and exchange a friendly nod with my fellow players. Con goers in full cosplay were out and about playing. At one point, and older woman stopped me to ask for some advice. She was a newer player and wanted to know how to tell a shiny Pokémon from a regular one, and I was more than happy to share my knowledge with her.

Description: GGC attendees in full cosplay out on the streets of Seattle to participate in Pokemon Go Community Day.

This is why I love this game. It encourages people to get out, see their community, and make friends. I have seen all types of people out playing at any given time—kids and their parents, couples, friends, and even the elderly. In my experience, there is not any one “type” of person who plays Pokémon Go. People of all genders and ages are able to find enjoyment in the game, and it gives us all a common bond.

In my everyday life, I won’t really go out of my way to talk to people. But on Community Day, that all changes. I almost become a different person. I will go up to groups of people and ask if they want to become in-game friends. There are people gathered around gyms to take down whatever featured legendary Pokémon raid is happening, excited at the prospect of having more people in their raid groups to give them the best chance to catch a rare Pokémon. After raids, people will congratulate or console complete strangers on their luck (or lack of) in catching the raid Pokémon. Children will come up to me to show off their best catches. Pokémon GO creates a safe place to enjoy something fun.

By the end of the three-hour event, I had caught right around 100 Chimchar, which really isn’t a bad haul. Within the first hour I had already obtained a three-star shiny Chimchar, which made the entire day a victory in my book. All in all, I walked away with three three-star Infernapes, including my shiny, with candies to spare to train them up. I ventured outside of my comfort zone to play a game I love, and I feel that my efforts were rewarded.

Description: An in-game stat sheet for a shiny Infernape.

I’m looking forward to the announcement of next months Community Day! Check in game for details and play safely!

Rebecca Anglesey
“Rock On!”

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