This is a question – and a concern – that comes up at many conventions, rope or not. From the very beginning of talking about ROPECRAFT, GrandMasterDavid and I wanted to make sure the convention was as welcoming as possible to single attendees – both protecting their privacy and also facilitating finding new play partners, as they liked. Here’s some of the ways we’re doing that:
Coded Wristbands (Removable and Changeable)
We’re also going to have wristbands – but with a twist. There will be two main colors, one that shows “I want to tie!” and one that shows “I want to be tied!” Are you a switch? No problem! Go ahead and wear both!
Here’s the fun part: these are not made to show that you’re at the event – that’s your badge. So don’t lose it! The wristbands are made of silicone so you can take them off or put them on as the mood strikes you. Want to be tied up Friday? Show it! Want to tie someone else Saturday? Switch the bands! Want to do whatever on Sunday? Wear them both! Don’t want to advertise? Don’t wear the bands!
Partners Wanted board
We’ll also have an old-school “partners wanted” board, so you can advertise what you’re looking for and send messages and the like. If that’s a little too “dead tree” for you, we just hired a hotshot web designer who’s going to upgrade our website to include a private “Ropecraft Members Only” section and you can start planning your hookups – or just getting to know people – months in advance.
Black – Not now
There’s one more band you’ll get – also silicone – that will be jet black. Almost impossible to miss. And that one will be the “Not Now” band. Everyone will know – because we’ll mention it along with everything else a whole lot – that if you’re wearing the band, it means you don’t want people to initiate conversations. It’s kind of like your own personal introvert’s corner. We can’t guarantee everyone will see it, or remember it, or even respect it (though our harassment policy will be very clear). But it’s an added way for people who are shy or who need a little more social insulation to show that without anyone’s feelings getting hurt.
Negotiation Facilitators and consent incident responders: The Consent.Rocks Incident Response Team
Lastly, I’m really grateful that at Ropecraft I can finally implement something I’ve wanted for a long time – an incident response team. These are three volunteer staff, like Medical or Ops or Dungeon Monitors, whose job is to act as a kind of “rope wingman.” They will receive special training in facilitating and witnessing negotiation, so that if there is someone new and exciting you want to talk to but you’re not sure how you have somebody there to help you. Newcomers to rope will have help negotiating safe scenes, experienced kinksters will have clear witnesses as boundaries for those wild and crazy scenes are set…it all comes out of some of the great discussions that have been had around consent and negotiation in the last few years.
The Rashomon (now Consent.Rocks Incident Response Team) will also have training in non-violent communication and consent incident response. The goal is that if something goes wrong, they are there to help the people involved come to a place of mutual understanding. Obviously I’m hoping that the this team doesn’t do anything but negotiate hot scenes between hot people having hot rope fun. But if needed, they will be there, and that position will be staffed 24/7 just like Medical.
So Come One, Come All
As we come up with more ideas, we’ll post them here and on the site. But the best thing is that we want to let everyone, single or double or multiple, know: ROPECRAFT welcomes you.