Panelist Information

Please read all the information here.

We adjust our policies every year, so we encourage both new and returning panelists to review the information listed below.

2020 Panels Submission Form Status: Active
Deadline for 2020 Panels: March 16, 11:59 pm
For updates regarding the status of the Panels Submission Form, please follow us on Twitter.

Table of Contents

Policies and Infrastructure
Planning and Submitting a Panel
After Submitting a Panel
At the Convention
Advertising a Panel

Policies and Infrastructure

Panelist Designation and Responsibility

Panels may consist of one or more participants. For the purposes of the Panels Department, the participants hosting a particular panel are either the “panelist” or an “assistant.” That being said, all participants in a panel are expected to have familiarized themselves with the information and policies listed here.

The individual who initially submits the panel will hereafter be referred to as the official “panelist.” The official panelist will serve as the sole representative for all discussion, planning, and scheduling with the Panels staff.

Any other co-panelists will hereafter be referred to as “assistants.” This is regardless of how many participants will be hosting a particular panel and is not meant to lessen the role nor discourage the involvement of any assistants. This policy is in place to streamline communication with participants and prevent conflicting information from multiple sources.

Industry Panels

If you are part of a company that intends to host an Industry Panel at FanimeCon, please visit our Professional Registration Page first. Only those who qualify for Professional Registration are eligible to host Industry Panels.

Industry badges provided via Professional Registration are not eligible to receive additional badge refunds via the Panels Department.

Badge Refunds for Fan Panelists

Fan panels are an essential part of FanimeCon’s “By Fans, For Fans” philosophy.
Attendees who host a fan panel are eligible for partial to full refunds for two badges.* The refund scale is based on the collective hours of panels hosted:

  • One hour panel = 33% refund for two badges
  • Two hours of panels = 66% refund for two badges
  • Three hours of panels = 100% refund for two badges

*These refunds are typically applied to the panelist and one assistant. For further explanation of the refund scale, see the Badges and Refund FAQ.

Badges and Refunds FAQ

Why aren’t panelists provided with discounted badges at the time of purchase?
Discounts for panelists’ badges were issued in the past, but as of FanimeCon 2015 panelists are issued refunds for the appropriate portion of their badge. This enables panelists to pre-purchase their badges, as well as simplify the application to other events and exhibits.

Do I need to pick up a “panelist” badge in order to host my panel?
No. Panelists are not issued separate or distinct badges.

How do badge refunds work?
Panelists and assistants fill out a form online, which will be provided to the panelist via e-mail before FanimeCon 2020. One form must be filled out per badge being refunded. The panelist will be asked to verify any refund submissions for their assistants. The form will require the refund recipient’s badge information, legal name, e-mail address, and physical address.

Panel staff will confirm and process the refund submissions after the panels in question have been hosted.

I would like my available refund to be applied to more than two badges. Can this be done?
Yes, the refunds can be applied to more than two badges, but the refund percentage per badge will be divided appropriately based on the refund scale – for instance, for three hours of panels, four badges can each receive a 50% refund, rather than two fully refunded badges.

I submitted a panel, but I have an Industry/Press/Dealer badge. Can someone else take advantage of the refunds instead?
Yes, the refund can be provided to two assistants in lieu of the panelist, at the specific request of the panelist.

When will we get the refunds, and how?
We are unable to provide an estimate at this time, but refunds will be returned to the method of payment or, in cases of cash or check payments, issued a check via USPS.

What happens if I am approved to host a panel and then it is later canceled? Do I still get my badge refunds?
If a panelist elects to cancel their panel, they will forfeit eligibility for the prospective badge refunds.

In the unlikely event that FanimeCon requires the cancellation of a panel, the panelist will still be eligible to claim the badge refunds for the panel that was previously scheduled.

Panel Room Layout

The Panel Rooms are set up with a table and chairs, typically located on a stage, at the front of the room for the panelists. Chairs are set up for the audience, facing the panelists. The number of chairs available is used as the capacity of each room.

Based on previous setups, the Panel Rooms hold the approximate seating capacities:

  • Panels Room 1: 900
  • Panels Room 2: 850
  • Panels Room 3: 200
  • Panels Room 4: 200

Due to the setup involved, significant changes to this layout are not permitted.
If you would like an alternative room layout then, please consider submitting your panel as a Fan Event.

Panel Room Equipment

If you have tech requests, make sure to include them into your submission. We will accommodate requests to the best of our ability.

The following are standard equipment offerings and limitations in the panel rooms:

  • Projectors and screens are available in all panel rooms, which can be connected to computers and gaming consoles. HDMI connections are available in each panel room by default. Some adapters may be available for use, but they are not guaranteed, therefore we advise panelists to bring their own adapters if needed.
  • AC power outlets will be available on the stage just below the table.
  • Microphones are available in all panel rooms in the following configurations: Panel Rooms 1 and 2: Four stage microphones, one audience microphone.
    Panel Rooms 3 and 4: Two stage microphones, one audience microphone.
  • For insurance and safety purposes, panelists are not permitted to alter the AV setup. If a panelist requires minor, reversible adjustments to the setup, or access to the mixer, they must request technical assistance and an appropriate FanimeCon staff member will oversee the changes. If you are aware of such requests beforehand, please list them on the submission form.
  • FanimeCon cannot supply extra microphones or any wireless microphones, so please plan your presentation accordingly. If panelists wish to bring their own XLR microphone, they can be connected to the audio system in a panel room by FanimeCon staff only upon advance request.
  • FanimeCon does not provide panelists with prizes to distribute for panel games or participation. Any and all prizes must be provided by the panelist.
  • Food or drinks cannot be served to members of the audience during a panel or be given away as prizes.

We are currently in the process of negotiating updates for our equipment setup.When our technical offerings are finalized, a detailed update will be posted.

We may be unable to provide any items not considered standard equipment for a panel room. Please submit special requests for equipment in the technical requirements section of the Panels Submission Form. Be aware that your panel may not be approved if we are unable to provide the equipment you request. If a panelist would like to bring in their own equipment, please specify this on the form as well.

As stated in the FanimeCon Code of Conduct, please leave the facilities and equipment in as good a condition as you found them.

Failure to follow the Code of Conduct may impact future scheduling in FanimeCon Panels.

Damage to the facilities or FanimeCon equipment may result in forfeiture of any eligible badge refunds to fund repairs and replacements.

Planning and Submitting a Panel

Panel Title and Descriptions

All descriptions and titles may be edited for spelling, grammar, and/or punctuation by FanimeCon staff. If your description is edited beyond this, you will be notified via e-mail.

In order to ensure all panels will fit into the printed program and pocket guides, the following character limits will be enforced:

  • Panel Title
    • Will appear in the Pocket Guide, Program Guide, and FanimeCon website
    • 30 character limit, including spaces
  • Program Guide Blurb
    • Will appear in the Program Guide
    • 150 character limit, including spaces
  • Website Advert
    • Will appear on the FanimeCon website
    • 500 character limit, including spaces

Please note that the “Panel Content Summary” field on the Panels Submission Form will not be published or publicly shared. This field is for detailing and outlining the content of your panel and is used exclusively by Panels Coordinators for selection and scheduling. There is no character limit for the “Panel Content Summary,” and specificity is strongly encouraged.

Company/Presenter Listing and Website

A company name is required for Industry Panels, which will be listed in the printed Program Guide. An accompanying website URL may be provided, if desired. This will be listed with the link alongside the entry in the online panel listing.

By default, the names of fan panelists are not published in any FanimeCon media. Optionally, fan panelists may provide their professional handle, cosplay group, or company name, as well as an accompanying website URL. This will be listed with the link alongside the entry in the online panel listing, but will not be included in the printed Program Guide. If this is not desired, please leave these fields blank.

Panel Lengths

Panels are scheduled in hourly blocks, starting at the top of the hour. The content of a panel should end five minutes before the end of your assigned block. For example, a two-hour panel starting at 12:00 pm should end at 1:55 pm, not at 2:00 pm. The final five minutes in the block should be used for cleaning up, and for the next panelist to set up. In order to keep our schedule on time, panelists must adhere to these time limits. FanimeCon staff stationed at the door will issue reminders to the panelists at the conclusion of their allotted time.

Lines for admittance to a panel will only be formed one hour before the start time of the panel. Lines will be let into the room upon the readiness of the panelist, which should ideally be prior to or at the start time. More time cannot be provided for panels which start late.

Turnover between panels proceeds as follows:

10:00 am – Panel #1 begins       Panel #2’s Line begins forming
10:50 am – Panel #1 is issued a 5 minute warning
10:55 am – Panel #1 ends           Panel #2 begins setup
11:00 am – Panel #2 begins       Panel #3’s Line begins forming

Panel Age Ratings

If a panel contains content that may be classified as adult material, panelists must inform Panels staff on the Panels Submission Form. Please make sure you enter the correct age rating on the Panels Submission Form. The ratings are as follows:

  • All Ages – These panels are suitable for all FanimeCon members of any age. Unless otherwise designated by the following ratings, panels are rated “All Ages” by default.
  • 16+ – These panels may contain more swearing and/or slightly more mature content. They may not be recommended for younger audiences. These panels do not require a photo ID for admittance.
  • 18+ – These panels contain mature content unsuitable for younger audiences. Attendees are required to prove they are of at least 18 years of age using a valid government-issued photo ID in order to enter the panel room. The panelist and any assistants must also adhere to this rule.

Panel Approval and Room Assignment

Panel approvals and room assignments are based on all of the information submitted on the Panels Submission Form. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • The available time slots are the largest factor in the panel approval process. The more scheduling flexibility a quality panel has, the higher the chances are that it will be able to fit onto the panels schedule.
  • The length of a panel plays a significant part in the scheduling process. There is always more flexibility in scheduling one hour panels than two hour panels. If feasible and/or preferable, we recommend dividing longer panels into shorter segments.
  • The Panels Coordinators often receive submissions that are very similar to one another. When several panels of a certain category or topic are up for consideration, priority will be given to panels that are more varied or unique in the presentation or execution of the content. As stated, detail and specificity in the “Panel Content Summary” field is highly encouraged.
  • If submitting multiple panels, please note the order of preference or precedence for each panel in the “Other Notes” field.
  • The earlier a panel is submitted, the earlier the Panels Coordinators can evaluate the submission. Panels are reviewed as they arrive, and scheduling begins within a month of when the Panels Submission Form goes live.
  • The expected audience size heavily influences the room assignments for panels. If your panel has been held at FanimeCon before, please consult the room capacities listed above to approximate your expected audience. The previous headcounts collected by panels staff, if applicable, will also be reviewed during scheduling.

Panelist Required Advance Notice

The majority of scheduling is conducted during February and March 2020. If a panelist

requires earlier notice than this time frame in order to adequately prepare, they may indicate so on the form. If you are unable to host your panel if not provided a definitive response by a particular date, Panels staff will make an effort to organize the selection process in order reach a decision by your provided deadline.

After Submitting a Panel


Panels staff primarily uses e-mail for most, if not all, communication. For efficiency purposes, all correspondence regarding an individual panel will occur in the respective confirmation e-mail, which lists all submitted panel information.

If time is a major factor, i.e. a scheduling deadline quickly approaching, panels staff may try to reach you via the phone number provided. If there are any limitations or restrictions regarding this, please indicate so in the “Other Notes” field.


1) Verification
When a panel is submitted, you will receive an e-mail requesting verification of the e-mail address you submitted on the form.Please be sure to verify your e-mail. The Panels Department will not actually receive your submission until after you complete the e-mail verification step.This e-mail should arrive shortly after submission, so please be sure to watch for this e-mail (check the Spam folder, if necessary) and click the verification link.Once the e-mail is verified, a confirmation e-mail will be generated, listing all the submitted panel information.Please e-mail if either of these e-mails are not received.

2) Follow-up
The Panels Coordinators will follow up via e-mail to confirm your panel submission was received and review any immediate questions regarding the content. Due to the rush of submissions, after the form first goes live, we ask for your understanding and patience if there are delays in this initial contact.

3a) Selection
If your panel is selected, you will receive an e-mail offering you a time slot on the FanimeCon 2020 Panels Schedule. You will have a limited amount of time to reply to this e-mail and officially accept the offered time slot. The time slot will not be held beyond the listed deadline.
– Time slots which are rejected by the panelist will be offered to another panel. If available, an alternative time slot will be offered.- Time slots which are accepted by the panelist will officially book the panel on the FanimeCon 2020 Panels Schedule.
– Requests to change the time of a panel after it has been scheduled may result in the panel being completely removed from the schedule.

3b) Rejection
If your panel is slated for rejection, you will receive an e-mail letting you know that the Panels Team has determined that your panel is not eligible for our schedule. If time permits, the panelists may be given the opportunity to make revisions to their submission, but we cannot guarantee this option will be offered.

3c) Waitlist
All submissions received after the aforementioned deadline will immediately be placed on the waitlist. In addition, panels which are not rejected, but cannot be included onto the FanimeCon 2020 Panels Schedule will receive an invitation to the waitlist. Invitations will be sent out within two weeks of the finalization of the Panels Schedule, and panelists will be asked for updates to their scheduling availability and required advance notice, if applicable. The waitlist is used to fill any vacancies in the Panels Schedule that arise due to cancellation of previously scheduled panels.

At the Convention

Panel Rooms

The Fairmont Hotel
Panels Room 1 – Imperial Ballroom
Panels Room 2 – Regency Ballroom
Panels Room 3 – Crystal
Panels Room 4 – Gold

Panelist Lounge

The location of the Panelist Lounge will be sent to you in an email three to four weeks before the convention.

The Panelist Lounge is the base of operations for the Panels Department and a location for panelists to come and check in with us prior to their panels. Panelists are also welcome any time the Lounge is open to come and ask questions or simply sit down and rest. The Lounge is not open to the public.

Panelist Lounge, Hours of Operations

Friday: 2:00 pm – 1:00 am
Saturday: 8:00 am – 1:00 am
Sunday: 8:00 am – 1:00 am
Monday: 9:00 am – 2:00 pm

Check In

All panelists are required to check-in at the Panelist Lounge 3060 minutes prior to the start of their panel. You may send a proxy in your place if you are unable to arrive on time.

If no one checks in for your panel by 30 minutes prior to the panel start time, Panels staff will attempt to contact the panelist using the At-Con phone number provided on the Panels Submission Form. If we are unable to contact you by 15 minutes before the panel start time and no one has checked in, your panel will be canceled. Once a panel cancellation has been communicated to the rest of the convention via social media, Info Desk, and Stage Zero, this cancellation cannot be rescinded.

During Your Panel

If you have any issues during your panel, please speak to one of the Panels staff stationed at the doors of the panel room. They will be able to assist you, or will alert those capable of assisting you, as soon as possible.

Advertising a Panel

Social Media

All panels will be announced on the FanimeCon Panels Twitter and posted on the FanimeCon Panels Listing.
If you have any further online promotional material, i.e. a video advertisement or professional homepage, please send us a link and we will share it.

Pre-recorded Stage Zero Promo

You may prepare an audio/video presentation to advertise your panel, which can be played on the Stage Zero screen. Take your prepared presentation to Stage Zero staff after you arrive at the convention. Stage Zero staff will review the advertisement and play it if approved. Video presentations must conform to the following restrictions:

  • Length is no more than 30 seconds.
  • File is saved as one of the following formats:
    .mpg, .mpeg, .avi, .mp4
  • File is named in the following format, based on your panel’s time slot:

Live Stage Zero Promo

You may promote your panel on Stage Zero in person. There is no scheduling for live promotions before the convention, and promotions will have a five minute time limit. You will need to visit Stage Zero when there are no events scheduled to inquire about a promotion time slot. Please inform the staff at Stage Zero of who you are and what panel you will be promoting. Be prepared to exit the stage promptly when your time limit is up, and follow any and all rules and regulations Stage Zero requires.

Have any questions that were not answered here?

Feel free to e-mail us at

2020 Panels Submission Form