Organizer versus Promoter

I skipped most of the workshop blocks i was not facilitating at Loud Love. Not because the content was disengaging, but because there was so much organizing to do.  We joked that the new staff to the organizing collection were called “disorganizers” because theoretically open space can be run by a loosely affiliated collection of participants – but we have not quite figured out how to do that yet.  Sky grabbed me and said he wanted to talk about funology before i gave the workshop.  So we talked outside during the “Negotiating Good BDSM Scenes” workshop.

Sky at Loud Love Phoenix Circa June 2013

Sky at Loud Love Phoenix Circa June 2013

He had three main points:

Funological grading/Grade Inflation:  Sky was critical of the funological grading system which i developed and promoted, feeling both that it leads to grade inflation (saying events were better than they really were) and that undercuts our inspiration to do better.  He proposed a multiple index system, where novelty, an event’s life changing capacity, its inspiration for future events and other factors might be averaged for an aggregate grade.  

sometimes the best is just too good

sometimes the best is just too good

Insidious mainstream creep:  Sky also warned that event organizers must be ever vigilant of mainstream values creeping into our work.  We need to make sure we are not drifting towards events with are consumption oriented, or move us towards observer/performer dichotomies instead of everyone as participant,  or that create access stratification based on access to money.  To name just a few.

Beware of actions looking radical, but that still replicate mainstream values.  Just because something has the image associated with something radical doesn’t mean that it is radical.

 You can have the same quality and quantity of alcohol drinking at two different events, but the intention behind that use can be the difference between a new friendship after the party and and awkward, “oh shit, I can’t believe I made out with them last night” experience.  The values and intentions at play lead to different choices, even if elements are the same.
it is not enuf to just appear radical, one has to be it.

it is not enuf to just appear radical, one has to be it.

Promoter versus organizer:  But his most important point was a critique which was of me quite specifically, that the two rolls i play in event organizing are frequently in problematic conflict.  I both promote events and i organize them.  In the process of promoting, especially around the recent Loud Love event, i start to believe my own hype about how big or how wonderful the event is and do not do the organizing necessary to insure the quality of the event.

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About paxus

a funologist, memeticist and revolutionary. Can be found in the vanity bin of Wikipedia and in locations of imminent calamity. buckle up, there is going to be some rough sledding.

3 responses to “Organizer versus Promoter”

  1. Ahnika Delirium says :

    I am in the same boat at this very moment with regard to that last paragraph. Feeling downtrodden about the conflict of the two roles sort of short curcuiting both & debating whether or not to even HAVE the event which is supposed to start tomorrow & get set up today. Blog post pending, whatever the outcome…
    Love atchye! ❤

    • paxus says :

      Good luck, Ahnika. What my take away was from Loud Love was dont cancel the event because the organizers are not able to pull it off, go to the participants and ask them if they want to go forward with something more horizontal than originally planned.

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