Most SF cons have:
- Official programming, usually consisting of panel sessions
- One or more Guests of Honor, usually well known science fiction authors.
- A vendors' room, at which books and fan-related merchandise are sold
- Cosplay or some form of costume show or fancy dress event at which attendees are encouraged to dress as characters from science fiction
- A con suite, which is a hospitality suite within the hotel where the convention is held, providing snacks and drinks to attendees as well as a place to socialise
- Parties, usually in the evening and often held in hotel rooms or hospitality suites within the convention space
- Awards ceremonies, such as the Tiptree Award presented annually at WisCon or the Hugo Awards at WorldCon
Note that SF conventions are somewhat split between "literary" SF conventions (focusing mostly on books and authors) and "media" conventions (focusing mostly on television and film SF). There is also some crossover between SF conventions and gaming, anime, and comics conventions.
- With a few exceptions, SF cons are majority male environments
- Guests of Honor at most cons are predominantly male
- Programming, vendors, and other con activities often leads toward a Sexualized environment which may be uncomfortable for women
- Harassment and sexual assault often occur at SF cons
- Sub-genres of SF/F that appeal most to women are often marginalised or unwelcome at SF cons. As in much of SF fandom, "harder" sub-genres gain the most respect and attention.
- Approaches to SF works which are particularly popular with women, such as the creation of Transformative works such as Fan fiction and Fanvids, are often marginalised or unwelcome at SF cons.
Some conventions of particular relevance to geek feminists include:
- WisCon, a feminist SF con held in Madison, Wisconsin, USA each May.
- WorldCon, the annual World Science Fiction Convention whose members vote for the Hugo Awards
For a list of cons which have pages on this wiki, see Category:Science Fiction conventions.