Updated: April 2016
Welcome to What The Fur!
We have spent countless hours bringing this convention to fruition for your enjoyment. Our main goal at What The Fur is to have fun and to ensure that the greatest number of people achieve this objective. With this in mind, we must establish some standards of conduct. We seek only to ensure that the behaviour of a small group does not disturb the membership as a whole, nor does it detract from the relaxed and comfortable atmosphere of the convention.
If you are aware of a breach of the Policies, please get in touch with a Staff or Volunteer person immediately.
For complete details, please review the following policies:
1.0 Document convention
Please note that in the following document, the following terms are of this meaning:
- What The Fur / WTF: may refer to the event ("What The Fur"), it's its staff, its volunteers or to its parent company ("Productions Anthropomorphiques") depending on context. The term does not exclude any of those concepts and may be interchangeable.
- Chairman / Conchair: refers to the convention chairman in duty at the time.
- Operations / Ops: The current Operations Director.
- Code of Conduct / CoC: this document.
- Attendee: Person who paid their entry fee and has taken possession of their conbadge for the What The Fur convention.
- Hotel: refers to the Holiday Inn Pointe Claire Hotel and it's personnel.
- Conbadge / Badge: The What The Fur-issued convention identification badge for the current year.
2.0 What The Fur Standards of Conduct
What The Fur has a ZERO TOLERANCE rule in effect regarding breaches of the Standards of Conduct. A warning may be given at the sole discretion of the Operations Director or Convention Chairperson. Anyone found committing a Criminal offense (one contained in the Criminal Code of Canada - including possession, consumption, and trade in illicit pharmaceuticals) while attending the convention, will be detained and/or turned over to authorities.
- Smoking is not permitted as per local laws. Smoking is only permitted outdoors. Smoking will not be permitted in any convention function or area, or in the halls, bars, and restaurant areas of the Hotel. What The Fur respectfully requests that those people who step outside to smoke kindly refrain from standing directly in front of any of the hotel's doors and entrances with a distance of at least 10 feet, as the smoke is simply carried inside. This is a city-wide bylaw.
3.0 Registration Requirements
For any and all conbadges to be issued, an official form of identification with photo have to be produced. This can include, but is not limited to:
- Driver's License
- Military ID
- Firearm License
- Any Federal/Provincial/State issued ID with photograph
All provided ID must be valid and unexpired on the date of the convention.
Minors are also required to produce the parental consent form to be admitted to What The Fur.
3.1 Conbadge Requirements
- When your conbadge has been issued, you are required to wear your conbadge while on convention grounds. The conbadge must be visible at all times. If requested by a staff member or volunteer, you must show your conbadge.
- If you are unable to produce your conbadge when requested, you will be required to leave the convention grounds and get your conbadge back.
3.2 Conbadge Transfer
- A convention badge cannot, under any circumstances, be transferred to another individual. You are responsible for your conbadge.
- This includes, but is not limited to, badge swapping, lending your badge to another individual, etc.
3.3 Conbadge Removal
- In the event that you are expelled, banned or otherwise revoked access to the convention, you will be required to hand over your conbadge to security, Ops or any other senior Staff member available at the time.
- You will also leave the premises of the convention and will not make any action that may disrupt the convention for the remainder of the convention’s duration + 24 hours.
- The removal of your conbadge prohibits you from purchasing another membership for this year’s event and may also include a ban from future What The Fur events.
- For additional information, please see section 17.0.
3.4 Conbadge Replacement
- In the event that you wish to replace your conbadge due to loss or any other reason besides removal and/or revoking of membership, you may do so for a nominal fee with the Registration desk.
- Details for the replacement programme will be available with the Registration staff.
4.0 General Rating of the Convention
What The Fur prides itself on presenting an atmosphere that is comfortable for fans of all ages and from all walks of life, and What The Fur members are expected to act accordingly. What The Fur is rated 14A (PG13 equivalent). Please refer to the Art Show or Dealers Room policies for details. In public spaces open to any hotel patrons, the Rating will be G at all times.
Regardless of any posted or understood rating of convention events, no actions may be taken or items displayed or used in convention events (or in the Hotel) that are illegal in Canada.
4.1 Attendee Age
- Those of age 17 and under are not permitted to attend without the express permission of a parent or legal guardian. Anyone under age 14 MUST be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian to be admitted. The best course of action for anyone between 15 and 17 is to come to the event with a parent or legal guardian so they can give consent and we can verify the identification papers.
4.2 Violation of Rating
- Anyone found to be violating the public rating, such as by publicly displaying inappropriate artwork, wearing unacceptably revealing clothing, acting in a lewd or lascivious manner (see PDAs below), etc. will be issued a polite warning and will have his or her con badge marked. A second offence will result in confiscation of the badge and denial of entry to all further con events. Blatant and obviously intentional breaches of the rules may result in immediate revocation of membership. Remember that the rules are in place to ensure the comfort of all What The Fur members, a responsibility which What The Fur staff takes very seriously.
5.0 Public Displays of Affection (PDAs)
We are a friendly and close-knit community. Kissing, holding hands, and similar activities among consenting adults are certainly allowed in all con-sponsored areas. We ask that common sense be used, however, when displaying affection for your special other. Two good general rules to follow at What The Fur are:
"If you have to ask or think twice about whether or not you should do it in public, then don't do it".
"NO means NO."
Please be courteous and understanding. If you feel that you must display deep affection for another in a physical fashion, please do so in the privacy of your hotel room. Hotel rooms reserved by the Convention are not available for such use. What The Fur staff will not hesitate to ask a party to desist if that party's behaviour is considered inappropriate for a public area or is blatantly annoying to other parties. Such admonishments are difficult for us and are an embarrassment to the party in question, so kindly do not make us take such action.
6.0 Public Exposure - Indecent and Other
At the request of What The Fur and hotel management, we must ask that shirts, pants/shorts, and footwear be worn at all times when in the lobby of the hotel, in any restaurant, or when traveling to and from the pool area or gym. Bathing suits in the lobby are not considered to be appropriate attire, even if you are only passing through. Please use the changing rooms in the pool area or gym. Costumes (including fursuits and cosplay) are considered "appropriate attire" in all area of the hotel except for the restaurants and the pool and gym area, provided the costumes are not unacceptably revealing. Costumes are not permitted in the restaurants or the pool/gym area, due to safety concerns.
6.1 “Adult” Fursuits
- Please note that although fursuits are considered appropriate attire, "adult" fursuits must have all of the details that make it as such (IE: SPHes, nipples, etc...) covered to be considered appropriate. Failing to abide by this will automatically end in a warning and the ban of the fursuit from the event (IE: it cannot be worn again, even if the evidence is now covered, for the duration of the convention). Repeat infractions by the same person will lead to the expulsion from the convention and may also result in a ban from future events.
6.2 Indecent Exposure
- Any person who publicly exposes a part of the body whose exposure constitutes "indecent exposure" under Criminal Code of Canada (and you know what they are) will be asked to correct the situation immediately and may be issued a warning. Upon further violation or failure to correct the matter, the authorities will be summoned immediately.
6.3 Accessories and Handling of Accessories
- Accessories are permitted as long as the wearer is the one holding them and they do not pose a risk to other attendees and are of appropriate nature. E.g.: collars and leashes are acceptable, but another person may not hold the leash.
7.0 Weapons Policy
To ensure the safety of all those attending the con, What The Fur maintains a very strict weapons policy. These policies are enforced at all times. Anyone who would like to question this policy should speak directly to the Security Director.
7.1 Live and/or real weapons
- LIVE AND/OR REAL WEAPONS ARE PROHIBITED AT WHAT THE FUR.
- “Nerf”-type of weapons are allowed in the convention area without being checked in by security. They may not, however, be discharged, loaded or otherwise be used.
- Solid-core melee weapons (ex: LARP swords) may not be used.
- “Halloween props”-style weapons are allowed as long as they comply with the other provisions.
- Water guns may be used as props within the confines of the hotel as long as they remain empty. Obviously, usage within the hotel is prohibited.
- Fake blood may be used on your own self but not in a way that it might damage the Hotel property (example: not dry, smearing could stain, etc...).
- This list should NOT be taken as an exhaustive list; merely examples to better determine if your prop is prohibited or not. In case of uncertainty, contact the Director of Operations.
- NOTE: Items such as switchblades, handguns, brass knuckles, and Bali-song (butterfly) knives which may be legal to own and carry in some States, are illegal in Canada. Kindly leave them home.
- ANY AND ALL WEAPONS, REALISTIC REPLICAS, PROPS, ETC NEED TO BE REGISTERED THROUGH CONOPS.
- This is mandatory for all weapons. Any weapon that is carried at the convention without registration can and will be confiscated for the duration of the event.
- The only exception to this rule is when carrying said weapon/prop to ConOps for registration and marking.
- Repeat offenders can be officially warned and/or expelled from the event.
7.3 Weapons Rules
- Every What The Fur attendee will have to read, accept, sign and abide by the rules sheet concerning weapons and/or props when officially registering for the convention.
- The result of not signing the sheet will be that the attendee may not register and/or handle any prop and/or weapon for the duration of the con. Said attendee will see his/her badge marked accordingly.
- All props/weapons have to remain unloaded for the duration of the convention.
- No props/weapons may be discharged at any given time, excepted during specific con-sponsored events that allow such actions, in the designated confines of that event’s location.
- All approved items being carried or used will require a proof of registration to be kept with the user at all times at the convention, to be shown upon request of any staff or security members. In the event that the user does not have the proof with him, the attendee will require to be escorted to Ops for verification.
- If repeated offenses are noted, measures will be taken that may include a warning up to expulsion.
- Brandishing any weapon, real or replica, is not permissible. Brandishing is defined as the display of an item for the purpose of real or implied threat, or any act that may cause anyone to believe that the intent was there, real or implied. The intent is irrelevant under the law, and the brandishing of any weapon will be treated as an assault upon another person.
- Anyone found to be carrying, brandishing, or to have in their possession, any weapon/firearm at any location associated with the con, without previous arrangements, will be immediately expelled and the offender will be reported to the local authorities.
- The weapon owner remains responsible to the weapon throughout the duration of the convention.
- Failure to abide by the rules can lead to a disciplinary action, ranging from a warning to expulsion for either or both the weapon handler and the weapon owner.
- Note that letting an unauthorized individual to handle a weapon will lead automatically to a disciplinary action taken against both attendees in question.
7.5 Weapon Registration and Marking
- All registered weapons and props will be listed at ConOps and marked using non-permanent and non-damaging means with a unique identifying code. The registrar will be the judge of where the registration mark should be placed and said mark will have to remain on the prop for the duration of the con at that very same location.
- This code must remain on the prop and plainly visible at all times for the duration of the convention. It may not be removed or tampered with. Removing and/or tampering with the identification code can lead to disciplinary action, ranging from a warning to expulsion.
7.6 Revoking of Weapon/Prop carry rights
- The registration may be revoked at any time at the discretion of the Operations Director and/ or Security Director on duty if the item is being used or brandished in an inappropriate fashion or if complaints are received regarding its display. In such an event, the prop may not be used/displayed again for the duration of the con.
- In the event that the prop is used again after the revoking of it’s registration, the prop/weapon will be confiscated for the duration of the event.
8.0 Disorderly Conduct
Please remember that you are a guest of the hotel, and that there are other guests staying at the hotel. It is only common courtesy to maintain a level of noise appropriate to the time and place. We expect everyone to cooperate fully with What The Fur and hotel security personnel. If you are requested to quiet down or to cease a certain behaviour, please do so immediately. It will make the convention much more pleasant for all parties involved. Please refrain from constant swearing and other rude language. Any form of disrespect towards other guests, hotel staff or convention staff will result in immediate loss of privileges and expulsion from the event.
Hotel security personnel are empowered by What The Fur to confiscate your con badge if you do not comply with hotel rules or directions. If this occurs you must take up the issue with the Operations Director. This standard includes any and all fighting, any inappropriate horseplay, or any actions that directly or recklessly cause undue disturbance to, or impair the safety of, any convention or hotel function, restaurant, public area, or patron.
8.1 “House Rules”
- What The Fur asks all of its members and guests to conform to a few house rules and we thank everyone for following them.
- These rules are as follows:
- No loitering on the stairways or in the stairwells. This means keep moving, do not plan on chatting in the stairways. This is a Montreal Fire Department safety issue.
- No horseplay or goofing off on stairways. This, too, is a safety issue.
- No horseplay near, on or around any of the railings.
- No offensive language or related behaviour.
- No intoxication, from alcohol or other substances, on convention grounds.
9.0 Harassment (All types, including sexual)
This includes but is not limited to: striking, shoving, kicking, any unwanted physical contact, threatening to do any of the above or following someone around a public place without a legitimate reason or in a threatening or intimidating manner, and threatening to cause harm. Please remember, if someone tells you "no" or to leave them alone, your business with them is done. Leave them alone. Do not follow them or make them uneasy in any way. Any complaint in regards to harassment shall be dealt with in accordance with Con policy.
9.1 Perceived Harassment by Staff/Security
- If you are found breaking a rule, you accept the fact that you may become a target for increased scrutiny by staff and/or security for the current and potentially the following event(s). Although this does not invalidate potential harassment by staff, you understand that any complaints pertaining to this matter will be greatly influenced by your breach of the CoC and may be dismissed on these grounds.
- In the event that you feel that staff is harassing you, you can bring it to the Director of Operations, who will then assess the situation and take a decision accordingly after a discussion with the appropriate staff members.
10.0 Assault / Menacing / Trapping
- Assault is defined as: any physical contact done with the intent to cause physical injury, or actions of a reckless nature (i.e., rough horseplay, etc.) that cause physical injury to another person. These are legally punishable by fines and/or imprisonment.
- Menacing is defined as when, by physical or verbal means, a person intentionally places or attempts to place another person in fear of death, or imminent physical injury, or harm, or distress. Menacing is also punishable by fines and/or imprisonment.
- Trapping is exactly the same as unlawful imprisonment. It is an indictable offence to stop someone from leaving an area or confining someone against their will. This means that if someone says "let me out", you let them out or you may find yourself locked up instead.
- Any person engaging in the above activities will be removed from the convention and most likely barred from attending in the future as well. If any person or persons assaults, menaces or traps any convention staff member, What The Fur will press charges to the fullest extent of the law and the police will be involved. Anyone found guilty by a court of law of any of the above actions will be barred from future What The Fur events, and this information will be shared with other convention coordinators upon request.
- The standards of conduct will be strictly enforced by the Operations staff and by volunteers, who will be clearly identified as such on site (volunteer or Staff badges and/or shirts). Enforcement will be very simple; your first offense will result in a mark on your badge and a warning. The second offense will result in the confiscation of your badge and the revocation of all con privileges without a refund. In cases of malicious intent or direct infraction of the above guidelines, or an infraction of the law, a warning may be bypassed.
- Please remember that your con badges are property of What The Fur for the duration of the convention, and must be presented and/or surrendered to any Staff or volunteer member requesting it. If you have any problem with any action taken by a Staff member, or volunteer, you may take the matter up with the Operations Director. We shall make every attempt to be fair and lenient in the case of infractions, but we cannot tolerate behaviour which threatens the peace and well-being of our members.
10.6 Limitation of enforcement
11.0 Elevator use
It's understandable that elevators are a prized commodity at conventions. But due to the nature of What The Fur, we kindly request that our attendees give priority of use to disabled people, other hotel guests and fursuiters, ideally in this order. This is for both reasons of respect and security.
12.0 Convention liability
By paying and receiving your conbadge, you accept that What The Fur and its parent company as well as their staff and volunteers are not liable for any items lost, destroyed or damaged while at the convention.
12.1 Physical Harm
- And though we at What The Fur try our best to provide a safe and friendly environment, nobody can be shielded from accidents. Therefore, you accept responsibility and agree not to hold What The Fur liable for any injuries and/or deaths that might occur at the convention.
12.2 Theft and Loss
- What The Fur cannot be held responsible to any and all damages, thefts or losses occurring in private hotel rooms. The person in who's name the room is in will be responsible for any and all issues that may arise that pertain to the room. This includes the aforementioned thefts and personal belongings damage, but also extends but is not limited to damages to hotel property, in and out of the hotel room. Each attendee assumes full responsibility for their behaviour. Any attendee found damaging or misusing hotel property will find his attendance to be revoked and be brought to the hotel personnel to deal with.
13.0 Private footage/photographs/recordings
All private footage and photographs remain the property of the owner. However, the owner agrees that What The Fur might use their material for internal or promotional purposes. What The Fur agrees to contact the creator/owner of the material to notice them of the use of their material, as long as contact information is accessible and the copyright owner can be identified. The method of contact may include but is not limited to:
- phone call
- private message via a web site
Despite the fact that the originals remain the property of their authors, we do request that you use judgement when using your material and make sure to respect other attendees' privacy.
Also, please note that photography is prohibited in the Art Show for copyright reasons. Photography is allowed in the dealers' room, as long as the main subject of the photo and/or video does not prominently feature the work of artists, IE: taking a photo of a dealers' table while all his/her work is out. The only accepted exception to this rule is a dealer taking a photo of his/her table for their own use.
14.0 Dealers Room-specific rules
- Due to the nature of the dealers room, additional rules requirements are in place in order to respect the dealers as well as to reduce loss potential:
14.1 Light and noise devices
- In order to respect the work environment of dealers, all flashing and/or bright lights (flashlights, rave lights, bright LED badges, etc…) have to be turned off when entering dealers. This is critical when the devices are at dealers eye-level. Note that this should not affect scrolling LED badges.
- Use of sound-emitting devices, including but not limited to boomboxes, squeakers, bluetooth and/or wired speakers is prohibited.
- If you are unsure if your device is acceptable or not within the Dealers' Room, please contact the Dealers Director for confirmation.
14.2 Photography/Video recording limitations
- Photography of a dealer’s booth is prohibited without prior consent of said dealer. Video is authorized, however should not feature the goods of a dealer without prior consent.
14.3 Access limitation
- Access to dealers is prohibited outside of dealers operating hours. During setup and teardown, only dealers and their helpers, which have been preemptively identified as such, are permitted access to the the Dealers’ Room.
- If a dealer requires access to the Dealers’ Room outside of opening hours, they will need to be escorted at all times by at least one member of security and may not linger in the room (EX: dealer forgot their markers, so they just pick them up and leave).
14.3.1 Exception for Print Market and Art Show
- Attendees who preemptively informed the convention that they will be using the Print Market or have Art Show submissions will be granted access, upon verification with the Dealers’ Room Director, to access the Dealers’ Room during setup only in order to set up their wares.
15.0 Media, reporters, journalists, news agencies, et al...
- What The Fur understand that currently, our fandom is an object of interest by the world at large as it is getting to be more and more known. This is why we do not forbid attendance by any media personnel of our convention. However, there are rules in place that media personnel will have to follow. Those rules are in place to protect the privacy of our attendees and staff. Any failure to abide by the rules in place for media personnel will end with an expulsion from the convention without a refund as well as confiscation of all material acquired at the convention and, upon review of the case by at least 4 directors, which will require to include the operations director and/or media relations director, may also lead to a ban to future What The Fur events of not only the individual but also all related groups and employees from the parent company.
15.1 Definition of “Media Personnel”
In this document, "media personnel" refers to any of the following:
- Media agency personnel (IE: CP, AFP, Reuters, etc...)
- Private reporters
- Professional bloggers
- News personnel (IE: CBC, RDI, CNN, LCN, etc...)
- Investigative reporters
- Documentaries personnel
- Professional photographers not hired by What The Fur
- Online reporters (blog, websites, etc...)
- Any person that is attending in a professional matter to report, record, photograph any or all of the event for archival or reporting purposes that have not been hired by What The Fur.
15.2 Media Personnel Rules
The rules in place are as follow:
- Media Personnel must register for the convention like all other attendees and MUST declare they are from the press prior to badge receipt.
- Media personnel must have their media badge on at all times.
- Media personnel may not alter, remove or otherwise make it hard for attendees to notice that they are from the media from badge information.
- Media personnel may need to be shadowed by a director or volunteer from What The Fur. This director or volunteer will be chosen by either the chairperson or the operations director.
- Media personnel must identify themselves as part of the press prior to any interview/Photoshoot/video recording/etc with an attendee.
- Media personnel are required to make any attendee that is within a photograph/video, main subject or not, to sign a waiver prior to the shooting of said photo/video if subjects are readily identifiable, and leave a copy with both the attendee and What The Fur.
- Media personnel, upon leaving the premises of the convention, may be required to give a copy of all acquired material while at the convention, such as:
- written notes
- any material that can potentially be used in the course of the field of duty of the Media personnel
- Media personnel are required to leave valid business contact information and contact the chairman or operations director were those information to change
15.3 Breach of Rules
- If media personnel is found in breach of any rules, they will automatically forfeit any rights to any and all material acquired while on the premises of What The Fur, have said material confiscated and deleted from their means of recording (flash memory, magnetic tape, paper, etc...) and will not be given any copies for any use whatsoever. Also, the parent company (employer) of the media personnel will be notified by the operations director of their breach of conduct.
16.0 Sharing of information
What The Fur prizes the trust that our attendees place in us, and therefore we will not share personal information with outside parties. We respect the privacy of our attendees, and make sure that all personal information is kept private and secure to the best of our abilities and knowledge.
16.1 Limits of information sharing
- What The Fur reserves the right to share any and all information regarding attendees ban circumstances and decisions with other convention staffs upon request. We will, however, respect the privacy of all our attendees, even those who find themselves banned or expelled from the convention. We reserve the right to share an email address and the name, at the request of another convention staff with proof of work for said convention, in the event that they wish to hear the attendee's side of the story.
16.2 Media Personnel
- For media personnel, What The Fur will reserve the right to communicate the identity of the company that has seen its employees breach the code of conduct to other similar events either upon request or by publicly making this information available. Therefore, What The Fur will not be held liable for any damages, monetary or otherwise, caused by this sharing of information.
16.3 Online Registration software information pool
- With the advent of the new Registration Software (the “Software” for this section) being used as of the 2013 edition of the convention, a common pool information base for registration is used by us and other information, offering a single point-of-registration for multiple conventions. Information stored by the Software has been deemed generic and no con-specific information is shared with other conventions.
- WTF guarantees that we are choosing the Software out of good faith and have confidence in the provider. If an information leak, issue, or any kind of spread of information by the Software or its provider may happen, WTF shall not be held responsible.
- 16.3.1 Questions and concerns
- In the event that any attendee has questions or concerns about the use of the Software, they may be directed to the provider of the service. WTF takes no responsibility towards the Software as we are a client of the service.
- 16.3.2 Refusal to use the Software
- In the event that any attendee, for any reason, refuses to register online, they will have to register at the door at full price or send in a mail registration form.
- No form of compensation or deal will be made whatsoever to accommodate those who refuse to use the Software.
17.0 Causes leading to an attendance ban
A person can be banned from attending What The Fur events if:
- They threatened to kill, maim, injure, or otherwise harass (see appropriate Policies) any attendee or staff of What The Fur at the convention before it even starts, and we have original documents or electronic signature to confirm this.
- They were found in breach of What The Fur Policies while attending What The Fur or any What The Fur sponsored sites, events, or functions.
- They have directly or indirectly threatened the livelihood of What The Fur.
Such decisions are taken by the Operations Director, then brought to the immediate attention of the Chairperson.
17.1 Disagreement and Appeal
- If there is a disagreement with any decision from the operations or volunteer staff, or the Operations Director, this decision may be appealed to the other Directors. However in a situation where the resulting decision conflicts with the Operations Director, the Operations Director’s decision will be final.