alleycon9 karma2015-06-15 20:33:59 UTC
Hm, I would have to say the biggest pro would be the comparatively low cost of living to the high salary. At my best, I was making about 40,000 USD per year and could comfortably live on 500 a month.
Your accommodation is paid for by your employer and taxes are a whopping 5% for foreigners. Health care is cheap as hell, too.
Living in Korea let me pay off a 40k student loan in 3 years while still traveling to awesome locations during breaks.
Thanks for the questions!
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alleycon7 karma2015-06-15 21:03:42 UTC
Asian-style conventions tend to focus on one niche (i.e. costume play or animation or game development), whereas western-style conventions are more esoteric, pretty much something for everyone.
We've got an artist alley, theatrical performances, a panelist room, debates, tonnes of stuff... all under one roof. It's a point of pride for Alleycon.
alleycon6 karma2015-06-15 15:56:38 UTC
Thanks for the kind words!
Due to space restrictions and a fire safety-imposed capacity, we figured that reaching out to the Korean audience would bring in far more people than we could handle. We did have a few Koreans join us at the inaugural event, though, as they were invited by friends.
The larger event in 2014 saw a good number of Koreans join us, all of which had heard of it through word of mouth. They were warned ahead of time that all the events would be only in English and they did not seem to mind. So yes, the decisions to not advertise to Koreans in 2013-2015 were deliberate.
Next year, however, we will be working on a way to bring more Koreans in and involve them. We're actually tapping into the Korean tabletop scene on July 4th at the Game Festival hosted by TRPG!
Thanks for the well wishes!
alleycon4 karma2015-06-15 21:00:53 UTC
It would be easiest for me to say Starcraft and League of Legends, but most people already know those are huge here.
Frozen was a point of national pride because the characters were designed by a Korean concept artist.
As far as geek interests go, Korea cranks through the fads pretty quickly, though the kids have maintained an interest in Beyblade for the entirety of my stay here (4.5 years).
As a teacher, you can sway the geekdom of your students to wherever you want it to go. I love fantasy, so my English lessons always ended with a ten-minute story about demons or trolls or knights. The kids loved it.
Long answer short, Koreans go with the flow and change fandoms nearly as much, if not more, than your typical western geek.
alleycon3 karma2015-06-15 20:54:17 UTC
I'm originally from St. Catharines, Ontario.
I had only ever been to Fan Expo Toronto twice before moving to Korea and so planning for Alleycon took a little bit of research.
I do have to say, however, that a geek gathering on a large scale isn't terribly difficult to plan when everyone wants to see it succeed just as much as you do, if not more.
For Alleycon 2015, we've had so many offers to borrow equipment (consoles, televisions, art stuffs, etc.) which we totally appreciate. However, we're looking to expand with each coming year and really need to take our planning to the next level.
Our five-year plan is to have a five to ten thousand person event in 2020 with celebrity guests brought over from other Korean cities, Japan, China, even the States. And frankly, even though we're growing in size fairly quickly, the planning becomes easier as the organizing council gains collective experience. We also now have a good reputation on which to plan future events.
Planning these events is pretty intuitive if you're a geek yourself, I guess would be my easy answer. You know what you'd want yourself, so you follow that vision.
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