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Feedback re lunch - Conflikt - a Pacific Northwest filk con! [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Conflikt - a Pacific Northwest filk con!

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Feedback re lunch [Mar. 7th, 2015|03:22 pm]
Conflikt - a Pacific Northwest filk con!


I tried to send this to the concom via the Contact tab on the web site, but I got a Not Acceptable message -- not a comment on the content of my feedback, I'm sure, but a technical problem that will be fixed as soon as the con notices they haven't gotten any feedback through that channel lately.  Having composed it, I want to send it to the con somehow, and maybe it's just as well if I post it pubically here.

Almost every filk con has something tradition unique to it.  Conchord, as I well remember even though I haven't been to one in years, has the Totally Tasteless and Tacky Revue and the Kazoo Awards.  OVFF has the Mad Hatter Tea Party and the Pegasus Banquet.  For Conflikt, the one unique thing I look forward every year to the mealtime collaborative songwriting challenge.  I've participated four times in a row, and I have a suggestion.

It's amazing that people can consistent come up with a song in less than several hours.  It does work, but the time we're allowed always seems much too short, however fast I try to cram the food down to get the eating part out of the way.  And then a huge chunk of time at the end is given over to announcements of other conventions.  I've already sat through almost the same list of conventions once, at one of the other cons I go to, OVFF.  When OVFF started that tradition, it used to be a list of the tiny handful of filk cons, but then the list of filk cons grew, and then it got expanded to include any convention where filk might possibly be expected to occur if enough filkers show up.  In recent years, OVFF started having the MC make the announcements so they'd go a little faster.  I guess it was that or start eliminating Pegasus categories.

I understand that people who own television sets have a choice these days between channels that run on two different models. Some of them are free, with the entertainment content interrupted by time given over to commercial advertisers whose sponsorship pays for the show.  Others cost money, but there are no advertisements.  My impression is that most TV viewers expect that if a channel is sponsored by advertisers, they expect to get it for free, and if they pay to watch a channel, they would be very annoyed if they had to sit through commercial advertisements or even public service announcements.

Si I feel like the Conflikt lunch breaks that expectation.  We pay for it, but we don't get the full amount of time to work on the song.  Frank Hayes suggested letting the song writing continue in parallel with the announcements, but I've heard others counter that people then wouldn't pay attention to the announcements.  So some people have the underlying assumption that not only should a lot of the time be set aside for announcements, but listening to them should be mandatory.  That's a little like making TV viewers not only put up with their programming being interrupted but also forbidding them to go to the kitchen to get a snack during commercial breaks.  I suppose we could leave our food untouched and concentrate on songwriting until the announcements start, and then have a leisurely lunch while we listen to the announcements, but I have a feeling the catering staff wouldn't be expecting that it would trip everything up.

[User Picture]From: lemmozine
2015-03-09 06:33 pm (UTC)
As far as the announcements - I personally do not find them necessary. I do track the various filk and filk-related cons myself, and what I would find helpful is about a 1 page flyer listing the cons in order by date, with the essential information. You're right: the announcements do drag on too long.

I have never yet been a part of a song at Conflikt that I thought was a "keeper." To me, the "feature" is less the songwriting exercise and more the CD.
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[User Picture]From: kanef
2015-03-09 06:53 pm (UTC)
"Exercise" is a good word for it. I value it as a fun and challenging exercise. By definition, the output of an exercise doesn't need to be a keeper.

I'd forgotten about the CD. I don't know if I got one lately, but a couple of years ago it was really useful because it included a recording of a song that was even nicer than the official recording, and I used it to write a parody I'd had in mind. Now, if the announcements went on the CD instead of being live...
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