Statement

STATEMENT ON ZAK SMITH

Following the recent disclosure about Zak Smith by Mandy Morbid[1] and Vivka Grey[2], as organisers of Furnace, Seven Hills, North Star and Revelation, we wish to publicly reinforce our commitment to ensuring that the various Garrison Conventions take place in a safe, inclusive space.

We adopted a Harassment and Inappropriate Conduct Policy[3,4] several years ago, which we continue to revisit to ensure that everyone can come and enjoy themselves without cause for concern. This is stated clearly and publicly. We subsequently added guidance on Tagging RPG scenarios[5] so the content and style was clear, based upon feedback from attendees who had felt uncomfortable about games that they had signed up to which were a significantly different style to that described in the schedule.

We will not tolerate inappropriate conduct, harassment, abuse or violence, and we expect attendees to demonstrate good behaviour and ethics at the Garrison Conventions. We remind GMs to think carefully before submitting or running material that contravenes the spirit and ethos of our conventions. If a game is likely to trigger or cause negative experiences, we also expect GMs to warn players through tagging and briefings before the game starts.

We consider Zak Smith’s work where he was primary author (including Vornheim, Maze of the Blue Medusa, Red & Pleasant Land, Frostbitten and Mutilated, and Demon City)[6] to be inappropriate to be part of the game schedule, as we will not accept material that promotes an individual identified as an abuser by multiple people. While we have no issue with people who decide to play Zak’s games as a personal choice, we feel that they do not promote the community ethos that we seek to achieve at our conventions.

This is not a decision we have taken lightly as several of the organisers own and enjoyed work that Zak Smith has created. However, we believe the statements given by Mandy, Vivka and others of their experiences at Zak Smith’s hands, and feel that a failure to act would be to condone his unacceptable behaviour.

 

Notes

  1. Statement by Mandy Morbid (warning – abuse/sexual) https://www.facebook.com/amandapatricianagy/posts/10215845527064252blog
  2. Statement by Vivka Grey (warning – abuse/sexual) https://www.facebook.com/VivkaCriesWolf/posts/2478145012257909
  3. Harassment and Inappropriate Conduct Policy (Furnace, North Star, Revelation) https://docs.google.com/document/d/1R2WbJMDjyctfM8ULsvRPy1y_nELOMAFN_WzcyCp_ljk/edit?usp=sharing
  4. Harassment and Inappropriate Conduct Policy (Seven Hills) https://7hills.org.uk/harrassment-inappropriate-conduct-policy/
  5. Tagging Guidance for RPG Scenarios: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1nfLT20vs2BQrdOs2ZOkP9gKoLU7ODsYTMKuR0tLd4fo/edit?usp=sharing
  6. 5th Edition D&D and Vampire are not part of this restriction

 

14 February 2019