Hi, I'm Tango, one of the Enforcers' security specialists at PAXes Prime and East, as well as PAX Dev. I'm posting this thread to help raise awareness of some refinements to PAX security policy that will be 'live' effective Prime 2011.
Be aware that the content of this post has been given the nod by PA, and so can be considered official. As such, only the most basic and definite information is presented here.
First off, the main change:NEW PAX ATTENDEE COSTUME WEAPON POLICY
While PAX is mainly intended to facilitate gaming, we recognize that many Attendees will want to dress in awesome costumes. These awesome costumes often come with prop 'weapons,' and the question: "can I bring this to PAX?" Needless to say, real weapons are NOT permitted,
but what about props?
Well, there are some informal rules that we've been using to decide this for the last few PAXes. As of now, they have become official, and are as follows:A COSTUME WEAPON IS NOT PERMITTED AT PAX IF:
- It fires or can fire any sort of projectile. (Yes, even Nerf.) - It looks like a real firearm at "second glance." (Yes, even if it's a kid's toy.) - It's sharp or pointy enough to cut or pierce someone with moderate pressure. (Yes, even if it's not made of metal.) - It's weighty enough to bludgeon someone with a moderate-force swing. (Yes, even if you're a TF2 Scout.)
If you bring something in that's not allowed you will be politely required to leave, stow the offending item in your vehicle/hotel room/etc, and then return. If you have any doubt as to whether your prop weapon falls under these restrictions - it probably does. Err on the side of caution!OTHER CLARIFICATIONSTHERE'S A MEDICAL EMERGENCY OR FIRE! WHAT SHOULD I DO?
You should definitely alert an Enforcer or a member of venue staff. Particularly in the big con centers, they can often get the venue's own emergency responders on the way for the fastest possible response.WHAT SHOULD I DO IF I SEE A THEFT / FIGHT / FAKE PASS / (INSERT INCIDENT HERE)?
You probably won't, as PAX is pretty laid-back. But the answer is always "alert an Enforcer or member of venue staff." Do NOT take matters into your own hands!WHO DOES SECURITY AT PAX, ANYWAY?
Enforcers, venue/event staff, and a few police officers. Enforcers are generally the first contact point for Attendees, and things get escalated from there if necessary. Enforcers and event staff both have security specialists who are in charge of ensuring those groups implement their security policies. The police are there for emergencies, and to prevent any lines that spill out onto public streets from causing problems.WHAT CAN I, AS AN ATTENDEE, DO TO HELP KEEP PAX SAFE AND SECURE?
1. Obey the above costume weapons policy.
2. Obey Wheaton's Law.
3. Be excellent to each other!
4. Let an Enforcer know if you have any issues.
Thanks for reading, and have an awesome PAX!
If a costumer modifies a nerf gun to remove the firing mechanism and thus rendering it a hollow, gun-shaped yellow shell, is it allowed then?
If so, I can provide a tutorial for the forum here.
From Tango, in the cosplay thread:
If you do it right (drop handle, large, etc.) It shouldn't look much like a weapon, more like a fire hose. When they say "weapon" they mean "real life weapon" not "in game weapon." (i.e. you don't want someone screaming "GUN!" in the middle of a crowded room)
What if the gun has an orange tip that is almost bigger than the gun itself? These "Rules" still aren't very clear.
Why no Nerf guns, even? Has there been a problem that warrants these new rules, or just extra precautions?
No nerf has been the rule since about 2006. It's not a new rule.
You mean besides deactivated nerf?
It was said that completely deactivated nerf is allowed this year, which is a rule change.
While PAX doesn't specifically cater to cosplayers the same way as, say, an anime con might, everyone concerned still wants to minimize the number of times we have to say "Sorry, but you can't have that..." to people who just came to PAX to have fun. Other than things like draconian cosplay bans, which would run totally counter to the spirit of PAX, the best way to reduce this is for as many people as possible to be aware, in advance, of what is and isn't okay.
To this end, there's been a costume weapons policy in place for some time. However, PAX in 2011 is a different beast than in, say, 2006. And so, this year, the policy has been refreshed to better reflect what the Enforcers' security specialists have been dealing with over the last few PAXes. Posting it on the PA Forums is part of an effort to make people aware of this before PAX; it's on the PAXsite FAQ, too, but as much as we'd like to believe that every single Attendee reads that, well...
Also, the global rules seem to be missing since the software changeover, but calling somebody a prick is in gross violation of the Glorious Edict, which states that you are only allowed to call somebody a "Silly Goose". Please keep that in mind when insulting moderators in the future.
And so: I'd have to say no. It definitely falls foul of the "looks like a firearm" category; remember that not everyone is as familiar with particular game weapons as some of us are.
Needless to say, PAX hates the US and the Washington State Constitution.
While I don't feel qualified or knowledgeable enough to argue Open Carry vs. the civil right to refuse service, I think your statement is extreme. PAX obviously doesn't hate America, or else these two conventions would take their money and popularity elsewhere.
The issue with these cosplay weapon rules is that attendees are bringing their prop weapons to SHOW OFF. If you showed off your concealed pistol at PAX, you would be brandishing your weapon - a misdemeanor. Brandishing is essentially considered aiming your gun at another person, whether loaded or not. Considering how many people attend PAX in such a confined space, any attempt to get the gun out of its holster would likely result in brandishing - whether that be intentional or accidental.
Not only that, but live weapons in public places make a lot of people uncomfortable, myself included. I will call security if I see a real gun at PAX. I have a difficult time trusting any civilian who would bring a deadly weapon to a peaceful gathering. There's no need to openly carry a gun at PAX unless you are a member of the police force or hired security team.
(Disclaimer: This is my personal opinion and in no way an official statement representing PAX or Penny Arcade, Inc. I'm speaking here as an attendee, and not a volunteer.)
I don't think it's unreasonable to require that real weapons -- whether firearms, blades or anything else -- not be brandished as part of a costume at PAX, a private event held in private venues.
Please understand that it's not my job to set the policies of the venues, the cities or the states concerned when it comes to open vs. concealed carry, interpretation of Second Amendment rights, or anything else. It's my job to help keep both PAXes as safe as I can, with the minimum of interference in letting Attendees do their thing
If you have any further questions about this, please PM me, as I want to keep this thread on-topic and not have it turn into yet another place on the Internet where the Open Carry Debate rages. Thank you.
I just wanted to let any interested parties know that if they possess a WA State CCW license, they cannot be denied entry into PAX if they wish to carry.
More information can be found here: http://apps.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=9.41.300
But in essence:
This is on topic and anyone who will be working PAX entry should keep this in mind. If you deny a licensed person, you could be setting up the organizers for legal trouble.
If anyone can point towards laws/rules which may disallow the carrying into PAX, please post it, as it most definitely would be on topic.
Destiny! : Warlock - Titan - Hunter
First, the relevant statute:
Okay, first off, based of a mere cursory glance, Section (2)(b) of this statute clearly says that a city may restrict the possession of firearms in "any stadium or convention center, operated by a city" except that such restrictions shall not apply to "any pistol" possessed by someone with a concealed handgun permit. But this statute clearly left something out. Something about the city operating in a contractual capacity with another organization when said organization wants to use aforementioned stadium or convention center.
Hmmmm....I think, is there a case that addresses this? By jove, there is!
Shooting Park Association v. City of Sequim (pronounced "Sqwim"), a 2006 case heard by the Supreme Court of Washington. You can read the .pdf here.
But I'll sum it up for Mr. Goosey:
Shooting Park Association wants to hold a gun show, Sequim says okay, but here are some restrictions. Shooting Park Association says 'buwhat!?" and sues. So the court looks at RCW 9.41.300 up there and asks "Did the City of Sequim violate the law?" The answer? No.
While the court doesn't address section (b)(i), instead focusing on b(ii), the court holds that the city absolutely could restrict the possession of firearms in a city-owned stadium/convention center when a city acts as a private property owner in order to protect its property interests. The critical point is "that the conditions the city imposed related to a permit for private use of its property. They were not laws or regulations of application to the general public." I'm more than willing to bet that the Supreme Court of Washington would happily apply the same logic to section (b)(i).
And of course, this means fuck-all when it's not the city imposing restrictions on firearms, but the private party itself who is leasing the property from the city, and private parties can pretty much do whatever the hell they want to with their private/leased property, which includes restricting the possession of firearms.
So to quote you:
Yeah, they probably can. Silly goose.
Now, since this is a COSTUME WEAPONS thread, let's get back on topic.
Make sure your fake weapons look fake!