EDIT: For those who are not aware, this is a response to the events that happened in Anime Boston. See here: link
EDIT: For the apology to the aforementioned events, see here: link
Hi. I honestly don't know if this is appropriate. (And maybe this is too early?) But I would simply like to put forth the question, do we need cosplay regulation/rules, as in something written down for everyone to see, or is the simple usage of common sense enough?
I've gotten inspiration from the Chinese fandom, who has specifically set rules as shown:
This page mentions the sensitiveness of dealing with Hetalia, and contains advice for the newbies to follow on the internet, etc. They even have a special paragraph regarding to COSPLAY.
Translation by onacrystal :
"Please note that when you do cosplays about APH, you are dressing up as 'a character who is wearing the actual (the existed) military uniform.'
Some cons would ban the congoers wearing the existed military uniforms, please read carefully about the regulations of the official board. Strictly saying, APH characters are not wearing the "actual" uniform, since Himaruya mentioned in his diary that "he made some changes on the uniform". However, in order to prevent any unnecessary misunderstandings and conflicts, please follow the regulation, or asks the official board for more information regarding to military uniforms."
And so I was thinking we should have something similar for the English speaking fandom.
EDIT: For proper flag handling, please refer to this: link
- "Do not drag around pointless accessories that your character used only once unless you want to drag along pointless luggage at best or be considered ignorant/racistic at worst.
- Keep interactions with other people, cosplayers or not, to a civil and proper level (don't act aggressive/bossy/offensive or overly affectionate/pervert) unless you want to be considered stupid at best or face unpleasant reactions at worst.
- Remember flags are supposed to represent another country and therefore treat them with respect unless you want to be considered an idiot at best or cause a diplomatic scandal at worst.
- Avoid everything nazist/fascist related. You should know why.
- Do not speak in a language or with an accent that's not yours or that you don't know as well as yours unless you want to sound silly at best or be considered offensive at worst.
- If you don't want to end up in serious trouble or, at best, be banned by a cosplay, make sure the usage of military uniforms/flag/objects or even the simple cosplay of some Hetalia characters is allowed and won't be considered as offensive (or even illegal) in your country/town or cosplay event. And once you've checked that's allowed still be careful about what you do and how you act. " jjblue1
EDIT: "Sort of using one I got from someone I watch on DA, but, if you are playing a character such as France or Korea, who is very touchy feely in the anime/manga, that doesn't mean YOU need to be touchy feely to people you don't even know.
Not every England will appreciate you being all up in their space bubble, France. And not every Japan will appreciate you groping all over them, Korea. " prussianegotist
EDIT: "Please be aware that a flag is not a mere piece of fabric. It's used to symbolize and identify a country.
Personally I would find it better if cosplayers would just carry the flags with them, neatly folded in a bag or something, and to only get them out when posing for photos (where they should still be used in an appropriate and respecting manner). When they are not in use, they should be folded and put back again.
The costumes should be obvious enough to identify you, no? I don't think you have to wave around flags.
Also when wearing real uniforms, make sure if it's legal in your country. In most cases it is not legal to wear modern and actual uniforms that are still in use.
If wearing a Uniform from the Wehrmacht, SS, etc. make sure to remove or cover up insignia and swastikas.
And be very careful with certain symbols that are actually banned in some countries
(The Swasitka and several other symbols are banned in Germany and Austria. Read more here.
Also: "In countries that were formerly within the Soviet Union's sphere of influence, the Hammer and Sickle and the Red Star are regarded as occupation symbols. Accordingly, the Republic of Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland have banned the symbol along with other communist symbols. Persons found guilty of possession, production or distribution of communist symbols may in Poland be sentenced to two years in prison."
It might be legal in your country but it should still be handled with care.
In other countries people go to jail for displaying them in public.
There is a reason why they are banned in those countries.
My last point is just something that bugs me personally and it's not something that can be demanded from everyone. But if you cosplay a certain character I will just assume that you actually like this character. Considering that the character is used to represent a country is it too much to ask for you to learn at least a little about this country and its history? I think it's a sign of respect and that you actually care about the character. I don't mean that you have to be able to know everything about it, but you know, just some basics. Because maybe it would make you reconsider some things." punpunichu
Research about the country you're cosplaying and the costume/flag you'll be using. You'll avoid doing silly mistakes and you'll learn interesting things
If you think rules are a good idea, please share a few guidelines you think people should follow when cosplaying Hetalia.