GAYME ON!

Bonus Level: The Queer Gaming Community Plugs Into GaymerCon

If you’ve ever played an online multiplayer video game, you might have noticed the environment isn’t always welcoming to those outside the straight, white male paradigm.

GaymerCon—a new event happening August 3 and 4, 2013, in the queer mecca of San Francisco—hopes to change that. Or at least provide an environment where fleet commanders, elfen adventurers and apocalyptic anti-heroes can let their rainbow shine brightly (and maybe even find gay romance, on or offline).

We are creating a convention where all types of geeks can come together, meet others like them, and have a blast without having to worry about what their peers think of them or being discriminated against. We will have exhibitor space, cosplay, guest speakers, live music, panel discussions on topics that are directly relevant to our interests, gaming industry professionals who support including queer content in their products, social events, and of course…GAMING!

We will also have events and activities that target other areas of geek and tech culture besides gaming. From tabletop gaming to geek chic, from panels by tech leaders to cosplay and live music- we hope to have something for everyone.

The con’s creators must be onto something, because in just five days, their Kickstarter campaign has already well exceeded its $25,000 goal. (Extra funding will be used to secure entertainment, celebrities, a better venue and other refinements, say planners.)

Gaymercon is just the latest in a growing movement of gay-geek-culture that was evident to anyone who was at last month’s San Diego Comic-Con, where seats at the Gays in Comics panel were impossible to find.

Bent-Con, a comic-book convention welcoming to gay geeks everywhere, had its inaugural run in Los Angeles in 2010. Organizers barely expected 100 attendees, but 500 showed. That number rose to 2,000 last year and, at this year’s event (November 30-December 2), even more folks are expected.

But it hasn’t been a smooth ride, as both conventions have faced bigotry: Bent-Con had trouble finding an online payment processor when its original one turned out to be a Christian organization that wouldn’t do business with them. And even though GaymerCon started receiving donations right away, it also received some pretty homophobic vitriol on its Kickstarter and YouTube pages.

Thanks, jerks, for showing us why queer-safe spaces like Bent-Con and GaymerCon are still needed.