I wrote this tweet the other day about a minor dustup in the science fiction community:
So a convention pulled an obnoxious twit's attending membership and as a result a bunch of other obnoxious twits are boycotting the convention, and now I think every convention has an easy template for ridding itself of obnoxious twits.
— John Scalzi (@scalzi) January 4, 2018
Which led an obnoxious twit to blather, more or less, “Yeah, well, I think you’re an obnoxious twit, Scalzi! What if I want you banned from a convention?!?” I think the argument here (such as it is) is that I would recoil in horror at the idea that a science fiction convention might decide to disinvite me, of all people, to their soiree.
But inasmuch as science fiction conventions are almost always private entities with control over who they allow in and who they don’t, in fact, I find it entirely unobjectionable that one might wish to seek to keep me from attending, for whatever reason. So I suppose if someone wished to register a complaint about my attendance, they should take it up with the convention committee. If the convention committee was convinced (and presuming I was planning to attend at all), they would let me know I was not welcome. Seems pretty simple.
And if a convention decided I was not welcome at their event, how would I take it? I mean, I would hope they’d tell me before I made flight arrangements and my hotel rooms were non-refundable, but otherwise, meh, it’d be fine. Generally I prefer not be in places I’m not wanted, and if the convention committee was telling me to go away, that’s a pretty good, non-subtle hint. Which means my weekend is now free! Which is excellent, I usually have things to do on a weekend, even if those things are “watch six hours of How It’s Made in a row and then take a nap.” Which these days is a pretty great weekend, I have to tell you.
(Mind you, I would be curious to know what the material objection to my presence would be; I don’t really have a reputation for being, say, a grasping creep who has designs to harass people and then pretend like I’m the injured party, for example, or for being a difficult attendee in a general sense. But I’m sure someone could come up with something. Whether it would have merit would, of course, be up to the convention itself to decide.)
But certainly, if you have a problem with me attending a convention, let the convention committee know. I have absolutely no doubt they will give the complaint the consideration it deserves.