Dogpatch Press

Fluff Pieces Every Week Day

Tag: ALAA

Furry founder Fred Patten saw more partying, less fandom in 2018 with the Ursa Major Awards.

by Patch O'Furr

Fred Patten started off with a message to Patch O’Furr:

This is a rant, as much as anything.  I wrote, as Secretary of the ALAA (AKA the Ursa Major Awards) to the AnthrOhio Committee, to invite it to host next year’s award presentation ceremony.  AnthrOhio is the new name of former Morphicon in Columbus, Ohio. They presented the Ursa Majors in 2008, 2011, and 2015.

I got a very nice reply from Danny Travis, this year’s Director of Programming for AnthrOhio.  He thinks it’s a great idea and has agreed.  But his reply implies that he’s never heard of the Ursa Major Awards, and that he was unaware that they have been presented at Morphicon/AnthrOhio in the past.

This makes me wonder how many of today’s furry conventions are being organized by people who are mainly interested in putting on a big party with fursuits, and little interest or knowledge in furry fandom beyond their own convention, including their own con’s history.  Some like Anthrocon with Dr. Sam Conway and CaliFur with Rod O’Riley (and any con with staffers who have been around for a while) know what’s going on. But how many are being organized by young people who only use the trappings of furry fandom to have a good time?

You have been following not only the conventions but a lot of the smaller furry parties and raves.  Do you get the impression that most attendees are more interested in partying then other active fandom?

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The Ursa Major Awards are a fandom institution, but can we fund them?

by Patch O'Furr

Co-written by Thurston Howl and Patch O’Furr. Full disclosure – Howl and Patch have received Ursa Major awards by community vote.

Even in non-writing communities in the furry fandom, many furries are aware of the Ursa Major Awards. They’ve been around for about 17 years, have presence at cons, and each year they receive many voters. However, for all their legacy, Thurston Howl – (a furry publisher who assisted with social media and marketing for the UMAs in 2017) – has come forward with concerns involving the UMAs’ recent soliciting for donations and GoFundMe campaign.

A transparency concern.

Until now, there has been no formal budget or accounting for funding. Fred Patten, Secretary of the ALAA (Anthropomorphic Literature and Arts Association, which runs the UMAs), told Howl on 5/30/17: “I cannot remember that the Treasurer for the ALAA has ever submitted a formal treasury report.” Fred confirmed there were no records for 17 years, and later added:

I don’t know how much it costs to print UMA award certificates, buy frames for them, ship them to the recipients, make and ship powerpoint presentations, etc., and I don’t know how much total in donations we’ve gotten over the years…

There have been complaints in email discussion by associates.  ALAA member Bernard Doove said: “I would like a report on the finances that is more than ‘we’re broke.'” And on 5/4/17, a donor reported that they considered their donation “an unwise decision that could have been put to much better use elsewhere.” There were even fears of misappropriation, but Bernard Doove found no evidence when he looked in the bank accounts. The explanation seems to be fees of $156/year to maintain a Checking and Savings account if they have under a $300 minimum balance each.

It honestly seems like an issue of mixing small fan efforts with more formal organization, like how fandom started. ALAA Treasurer Rod O’Riley was a fandom founder who helped start Confurence in 1989. He responded to a request for comment:

The problem is not transparency — the problem is a lack of funds to be transparent about.

All donations have made their way into our bank account, and have been spent on either what they were supposed to be spent on — making and mailing out our trophies and plaques — or else were swallowed by the bank fees. ALL donations. Sometimes they took a while to get where they were going — as recently, when PayPal and our bank’s on-line system had difficulties talking to each other, for reasons I still do not understand. But eventually, they got where there were going.

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Furry documentary gold, and a Sex Drama Explosion – NEWSDUMP (8/25/15)

by Patch O'Furr

Headlines, links and little stories to make your tail wag.  Guest posts welcome. Tips: patch.ofurr@gmail.com

Ursa art by Foxenawolf.

Anthropomorphics Reading List wants Dogpatch Press reader recommendations!  (via Fred Patten:)

“The Anthropomorphic Literature and Arts Association (ALAA) has just updated the 2015 Anthropomorphics Reading List.  It now includes all the 2015 anthro titles that anyone has recommended through August 8 as worth reading, seeing, or playing. The ALAA would love to get some recommendations from Dogpatch Press readers for the next update.” (- Fred).  If you know of any 2015 Furry books, comics, movies, etc. to recommend, send them here:  recommended@ursamajorawards.org

Houston Press – Furries in the Arts and Culture section.

“6 Modern Subcultures That Might Shock the Mainstream.” Clickbait with nothing new, except we get to be on the same list as Juggalos.

Culturally F’d on Furry gatherings: Why do we go to conventions, and why do we move in together?

Arrkey writes: “Hey Patch! The next episode is all lined up and it’s a doozy. All about con-culture, furry gatherings and all-furry housing situations:”

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FURRY GOOD IDEAS: Fursuit of the Year award and fashion show, and more.

by Patch O'Furr

One of the few search results for "fursuit fashion show."

One of the few search results for “fursuit fashion show.”

Read to bottom for Fred Patten’s informative comment that inspired this.  

In 2014, fun hobby blogging exposed me to many new ideas that could use more development.  This blog is for underexposed, underrated topics.  That’s subculture, and it’s about fan love.  I love sharing it!

Looking back at some articles about new ideas and opportunities, I think they could use a feature.  FURRY GOOD IDEAS joins previous special features here.  

I was going to call this “What Furry needs”.  But nobody really NEEDS these. This isn’t preaching what’s best for you.   It’s just observation from one enthusiastic fan, inspired by other fans.  It comes from a thriving subculture that ‘s expanding with a convention every weekend, somewhere in the world.  That makes a lot of room for ambitious proposals.  This is an attempt to highlight ideas with popular demand, appeal, or opportunity to make real.  Share yours too!

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