Otakon Acknowledges Artist Alley Controversy

posted on 2008-08-30 14:55 EDT by Mikhail Koulikov
Same group was reportedly able to purchase 14 tables under different names

Otakon, North America's second-largest anime convention, has officially responded to a controversy that has arisen over the Artist Alley at this year's convention, which ran from August 8 to August 10. According to many attendees and artists, a single group purchased as many as 14 different tables and sold pieces drawn by the same person under several different names.

Matt Smiechkowski, the president of Otakorp, Inc. (Otakon's corporate parent), stated in a message posted on the Otakon website that the convention is aware of this controversy, but that Otakon staffers were not able to take any action regarding it during the convention. Under Otakon's policies, a single group is not allowed to book that many artist alley tables, but it is not clear whether artists were also prohibited from displaying their work at booths booked by other groups. Regardless, Otakon staff will be examining the table reservation and booking process to ensure that this sort of "rules-bending" is less likely to happen at future conventions.

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