Who are you?
We are the department that provides a headquarters and communications system for the convention while it’s running.
Where the heck are you?
Have you looked over your shoulder recently? No, really. There are volunteers working on the Bridge, which is our official function space and where all our cool toys live (see How can I become an Ops volunteer?), but even more volunteers can be found wandering around being very host-like in rather fetching purple and green vests. The Bridge is located in Verandas 2 & 4 this year, same area as last year.
So I really need to talk to Ops. How do I get a hold of ya’ll during the convention?
Ops staff are on the Bridge from when the convention opens to when it ends (plus a little before and after), and they can be reached by dialing x7215 from any room room telephone, or picking up any in-house telephone and asking the hotel operator to transfer you to the Bridge. Or you can stop by the Bridge itself in Verandas 2 & 4. We’re way across the way from ConSuite, overlooking the Garden Court. Or just grab (gently) any of the purple-and-green vested individuals you see. They have radios.
What is The Bridge?
The Bridge is our function space where we hang out, and it is the headquarters for the convention while the convention is in progress. This is where you can bring your questions, comments, and problems. This is also where you bring items that have been found and search for items that have been lost, and get your weapons peacebonded. Yes, even the bad guys get their weapons peace bonded.
What Does Operations Do?
Operations provides communications. We’ve got a Dispatcher who handles the radio traffic between all the departments and the Wandering Hosts that are out, well wandering about and being the hosts of the convention (answering questions and other hostly duties), and did we mention the cool vests? The Comm Officers log all radio traffic and some of the live on-the-Bridge traffic, as well as writing haiku in the off times. Things we handle include: Lost & Found, peacebonding weapons, communicating convention policy, communications between departments/the hotel/convention committee members.
What are your hours?
The Bridge is open 24 hours a day for the duration of the convention. We open officially at 8:00 AM on Thursday, 30 June 2011, and remain open until 6:00 PM on Sunday, 3 July 2011. (The Bridge will be staffed on Wednesday, 29 June 2011 from 12:00 PM to 6:00 PM for its own set up and to help communications for others setting up.)
Assimilation, or How can I become an Ops volunteer? aka Resistance is Futile
Help us host your favorite giant party! Ops needs responsible people to be wandering hosts. You’ll be trained in using the super-sekrit radio system and outfitted with an amazing purple vest. Gather information and report back to your handlers at the Bridge, all to achieve the mission of super-fun times for everyone at Con. Come to the Bridge or volunteer before Con by contacting us.
The incredibly grateful person who responds will give you more info. We have training opportunities and plotting get togethers before the convention, and those hours do count toward your volunteer total.
Also, if you’re thinking of volunteering, but don’t know what it involves, PLEASE, stop by and visit us on the Bridge during the convention. We’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have, and have training available on site. Seriously. We’re already gearing up for the next year with that whole extra day of volunteer hours to staff now that we are a four day convention. Even if you can’t do alot this year (or even anything this year) we are still doing training. Feel free to drag along friends, relatives, random strangers you’ve pulled off the street that don’t smell too bad but think you’d might like to work with.
Contact us. The incredibly grateful person who responds will give you more info. We have training opportunities and plotting get togethers before the convention, and those hours do count toward your volunteer total.
Do Ops volunteers provide first aid?
Although we do not provide direct first-aid services, we are always willing and able to help should an emergency arise. Call us at x7215. For serious medical emergencies, call the hotel front desk from the room you are in or any hotel house phone, or ask for aid in obtaining help from the nearest Convention Committee member or hotel staff.
Is Ops the security force for the convention?
Nope. We’re volunteers, just like you. Ops is a communication network. Sometimes, we communicate things like “no, Sweetie, 13 year olds can’t drink alcohol” or “Um, please don’t do that, it’s disturbing the people around you”. In situations where the law needs to be enforced, Ops volunteers will contact The Bridge and the Bloomington police will be summoned by the Ops Head On Duty.
Can I do ______ at CONvergence?
Please refer to the Policies page for a listing of CONvergence policies. Note: Ops does not create these policies, but rather communicates them on behalf of The Board. If you’re not sure, call or stop by. We enjoy communicating.
I’m only coming for the first two days, can I give my badge to a friend for the rest of the weekend?
No, you may not. So-called “badge sharing” is actually fraud. Leaving aside all other arguments (and they are numerous), each badge is a unique identifier for that person. If (heavens forbid) something bad were to happen and render you incapable of communicating, the badge is our first step in identifying you and getting you the help you need. If you are wearing someone else’s badge, you put yourself and the convention at risk and that is Unacceptable.
Punishment for badge sharing is as follows:
The registered member who loaned/shared their badge will be removed from the convention immediately, and will be banned from attending future conventions unless and until they petition the Board of Directors for readmittance with an honest statement of wrong-doing and culpability.
The person who is in possession of a badge not theirs will be given the choice of either registering immediately paying the at-the-door rate or leaving the convention immediately AND will be banned from future conventions unless and until they petition the Board of Directors for readmittance with an honest statement of wrong-doing and culpability.
Can I lend my badge to my friend for just a little bit so he/she can see a panel/grab a snack at Consuite/shop in the Dealers Room?
No, you may not. Want to know what would happen to you? See [above]. Is it really worth taking the chance just so your friend can see/snack/shop?
But I can’t afford to register this year and I really want to come!
If you cannot afford to attend, then don’t attend. Do not risk your future participation by trying to attend this year illegally. We will miss you, but we promise we’ll have another convention next year. And you can always come to the hotel on Sunday and register for NEXT year using the at-the-convention rate, even if you are NOT registered for this year’s convention.