LeakyCon July ’22 Call for Programming

LeakyCon, the Harry Potter Fan Convention Division of Mischief Management, has two gatherings scheduled for 2022: a 29-31 July meeting in Orlando, Florida, and a 14-16 October conclave in Denver, Colorado. Since the retirement of Harry Potter Educational Fan-On (HPEF), LeakyCon, founded by Leaky Cauldron owner Melissa Anelli, has been the premiere organizer of Wizarding World fandom events. There are notable efforts by communities to assemble city-wide Harry Potter celebrations — ‘Queen City Mischief and Magic’ in Staunton, Virginia, (see pictures) and Roanoke, Virginia’s Harry Potter Fest come immediately to mind — but they have had to battle with Rowling, Inc.’s Barracuda Barristers for permissions and allowances. LeakyCon for whatever reason has not suffered this persecution despite not being officially associated with the J K Empire.

Mischief has it seems, though, struggled with registrations the last two years. The LeakyCons scheduled for 2020 and for 2021 were both “postponed,” which is to say “cancelled.” Their public statements about two years of No Go shows have attributed these failures to the Covid-19 hysteria, which no doubt has played its part — as it has in reshaping every aspect of public and private life in these United States, even in relatively madness-free Florida. Today’s call-for-programming with respect to both of the scheduled 2022 LeakyCons suggests, now that vaccine mandates and lockdowns have lost their luster, that the Mischief Management sponsors believe that their show will once again go on.

The LeakyCon 2022 Call for Programming page is here and the deadline for applications for the July gathering is 25 March. Get to work! I’m especially hopeful that David Martin will be speaking there (and that he has a peacock’s feather quill and a large bottle of ink for all the autographs he’ll be signing!).

Just some late night notes ‘below the jump’ about what isn’t being mentioned in the Mischief Management messaging, all of which are offered as asides.

There are at least two elephants in the Convention Hall that are not being discussed that seem to this observer as at least as likely causes for the previous cancellations as Pandemic Pandemonia. This pair of pachyderms are Rowling’s supposed “transphobe bigotry” and the concerted efforts of Potter Fandom United, Inc., to separate Harry Potter “communities” from any association with the author of the books these groups love.

Rowling’s unapologetic and heroic defense of women’s right to reserved spaces and protection has offended many transgender people and those who advocate for them, which would naturally mean few of these once-fans but now supposed “victims” and those allied with them would want any relationship with Potter-dom. In parallel, the full-throated and borderline libelous attacks on Rowling by the leadership of Leaky Cauldron, MuggleNet, TGTSNBN, Harry Potter Lexicon, and Mischief Management have had a parallel effect on those readers who think Rowling’s position is correct or at least not at all transphobic. Those not embracing Woke Progressivism as the End of History Truth before which every knee must bend have been put on notice that they are not welcome at LeakyCon or even at matches of the Sport Formerly Known as Quidditch.

I scrolled through the Submissions Application form on the LeakyCon ‘Call for Programming’ page I received today and I did not have to read the fine print or between the lines to see the organizers’ priority in signaling to the Rowling-Hesitant that speakers will be screened, if not for vaccination status, then for political uprightness and inclusivity, an Orwellian word now meaning its opposite. “Mischief Management strives to always feature diverse lineups of panelists. When curating sessions for our events, please remember to reach outside of your immediate networks to invite panelists of multiple races, genders, and backgrounds.” This is in keeping with the “J.E.D.I. (justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion) courses” which is to say, ‘indoctrination exercises,’ the messaging of which all full-time Mischief Management personnel must pass through and accept as gospel.

I will not be applying to speak at either LeakyCon this year. For one thing, I know from experience and by conversation with decision makers that I have been blacklisted as a speaker at these gatherings. For another, just as I walked away from MuggleNet because of their collective and vehement disavowal of Rowling (and their having made this position a de facto requirement for continued membership), I cannot imagine productive conversation with those with the same opinion in Orlando and Denver. And the organizers have made it clear that only fans with this opinion are welcome.

I do hope that there will again be Potter Pundit gatherings in the future, ones under the umbrella of an academic literary society or a community group as in Queen City and Roanoke. I expect those meetings will include a real diversity of opinion and inclusivity with respect to clashing ideas that will lead to new understanding and insights for those assembled. The last thing we need today is more mono-culture, tribalism, and division — and what a shame that Harry Potter fandom, which by rights should be the most ardent defenders of safe spaces for dialogue and discussion, has become a hallmark case of exclusion in the name of inclusivity and pasteurization in lieu of diversity.


  1. I’ve never posted on this site before but just wanted to say what you wrote about Rowling was very well said. I agree with you completely. I find the whole hive mind mentality that’s occuring extremely worrying. If we don’t agree with another person’s opinion we shouldn’t immediately dismiss them as a human being but instead have reasonable discussions. If we can’t do that then we can’t grow as a society. I don’t believe anything Rowling has said is in anyway transphobic. Ironically I think what she is saying has very little to do with the trans community and far more to do with predatory men and how they can use new trans rights laws to their advantage.
    I think the people opposed to her views are in the minority though but they just speak louder and those in agreement are mostly and understandably afraid to speak out. I don’t think those people calling her transphobic truly comprehend what she is actually saying.

  2. Thank you, Katie.

    If anyone wishes to read more on the subject of Diversity, Inclusivity, and Equity as it applies to cowing non-Bolsheviks into a cowardly silence, Jordan Peterson’s essay ‘Why I am no longer a Tenured Professor at the University of Toronto‘ and N. S. Lyon’s ‘No, the Revolution Isn’t Over‘ are good places to begin.

    This is not a website devoted to such topics, though they have forced themselves into our conversations despite not being invited. I am closing this thread to comments, consequently, lest these subjects suck any more of the oxygen from the room of ideas than they have already; if you want to share your thoughts on the subject of Woke supremacists and their outsized place in Harry Potter fandom, please feel free to contact me through the site’s contacts page or via john at hogwartsprofessor dot com. Thank you!