November 18, 2019, a UK based convention named “SunnyCon Anime Expo” decided to ban ahegao clothing from their convention.
⚠️Currently updating our cosplay etiquette rules for 2020 and we're not allowing ahegao clothing at our future events because we are an all-age convention. Rules will be uploaded this week as we update our site but we thought we'd get this one out there so you have been informed!
— SunnyCon Anime Expo (@SunnyAnimeExpo) November 18, 2019
The Tweet receiving over 24,000 likes, despite many disagreeing in the replies. However, one thing we’ve seen, is that people who tend to agree with Virtue Signaling posts on Twitter often, to almost never, actually monetarily support what they screech about.
It seems SunnyCon Anime Expo does not understand that statistically accurate premise.
No other rules will drastically change. The ahegao rule was brought in because it made people uncomfortable and can be seen as exposing children to porn. Where it is a grey area we thought just to air on the side of caution and as shown it has proven to be a good call.
— SunnyCon Anime Expo (@SunnyAnimeExpo) November 19, 2019
When they write “as shown it has proven to be a good call”, it’s an implication that they are basing it being a “good call” simply from the engagement they received on their tweet. As the convention itself had not yet occurred at the time of that tweet being made, so they are not judging the decision on actual merit ( badge sales, turnout, etc ), simply on Twitter engagement.
Now, the outrage over ahegao clothing continues, as this short video clip has been making waves on Twitter today.
— 😩LYCHGATE😩@ OHAYOCON (@buttcheekwizard) January 11, 2020
The 10 second clip shows a vendor at presumably Oyahocon recording people who pass by in ahegao clothing and keeping a tally ( labled “AHAEGAO COUNT”). I’d like to point out that they are so concerned about this grave issue that they don’t even spell ahegao properly. I’d also like to point out that their Twitter name is “buttcheekwizard”.
In case you were wondering, this is apparently the one and only “buttcheekwizard”. I don’t know about you but I would much prefer to look at ahegao clothing, if I had to chose.
Others in the replies pointed out the hypocrisy of banning ahegao clothing at an anime convention, and the can of worms it can open it.
I wonder whats worse letting your kids see this or a hoodie with cropped faces <o< we gonna shame one we gotta shame everyone pic.twitter.com/aks8EMzH0N
— ◇♡☆~Michiko~☆♡◇ (@moanchiko) January 12, 2020
Even beloved Anime Youtuber, LostPause, made a video discussing SunnyCon’s choice.
While I personally don’t think ahegao shirts look great, I also understand they are just a memey thing that has been at the center of anime convention culture for many years. Unfortunately, there is an infestation of people trying to involve themselves in the anime community, who have absolutely no interest in anime or Japanese culture, and seem only to see the industry and community as a new place for them to virtue signal in.
Luckily, anime fans are poised to continue pushing out these intolerant people. So far, we have succeeded, but who knows what boring, weirdo, people will try and say is bad about anime next.
(Thank you @1Lazward for the news tip!)