In 2001, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, and Finland started a mutual fan fund, collecting money to send fan representatives to conventions in the neighboring countries. Of the fund’s four siblings, the Swedish and Norwegian funds are the most active.
This year, the Swedish and Finnish Fan Fund will send its participant to IceCon, the first fancon organized in Iceland. The Swedish representative is Nahal Ghanbari and the Finnish representative is Saija Kyllönen.
IceCon welcomes Nahal and Saija to Iceland, and in recognition of the Swedish and Finnish fan community, has waived all participation fees.
How to Organize an Icelandic Fan Fund
One of the main goals of IceCon 2016 is to provide the Icelandic fan community an opportunity to connect with the fan community in our neighboring countries.
The Nordic Fan Fund is a wonderful tool to encourage cooperation between the fan communities of the Nordic countries. Johan and Bellis, the main administrators of the Swedish Fan Fund sent us at IceCon a letter, with information about how to organize such a fund. They gave us permission to share this on our website, to encourage us in the Icelandic fan community to come together and create our own fund.
The Swedish Fan Fund
The Nordic Fan Fund collects money to send well-known and popular science fiction fans to conventions in the neighboring Nordic countries. From Sweden, we annually send a delegate to one of the other Nordic countries, and we alternate the target country according to a rotating scheme – Denmark every third year, Norway every third year, and Finland every third year.
Early each year, we take a look at the target country’s upcoming conventions, choosing one of them for the trip. As pertains to Norway and Denmark, however, most often they won’t organize more than one a year. If there are more conventions to choose from (which is always the case in Finland), we pick the largest one.
Some three or four months in advance of the target convention, the Swedish Fan Fund advertises on Facebook and on various mailing lists, asking for potential candidates, in order to create a ballot. Originally, we asked fans in general to nominate their favourite candidates, thinking people would be too shy to nominate themselves, but since the nominees were often unable to accept due to other obligations, we began urging people to nominate themselves instead, which has turned out to work rather well.
We used to let each year’s winner act as administrator for the following year, but this turned out to be a mistake. More than once the winner forgot to organize a race, so we changed the statutes and nowadays NoFF has two permanent administrators, myself and Bellis.
The candidates are voted on by Nordic fandom, and each vote is accompanied by a donation. These donations, and money raised from auctions at conventions, are the sole sources of income for the Swedish branch of NoFF.
There is a minimum voting fee of 20 SEK, and the procedure is rather informal; although we do print ballots to fill out and return, a simple e-mailed vote is OK if it is followed by payment of the voting fee to one of the administrators, or to NoFF itself.
The winner receives tickets, accommodation, and pocket money.
There are very few hard rules and we administrators reserve the right to change them when and if we deem necessary.
To be eligible as a candidate:
- you must have been active in Swedish fandom for at least 2 years
- you cannot be a previous NoFF winner or a NoFF administrator
To vote you must:
- have been active in Swedish fandom before the current year
In Finland there are also two administrators – the winner of two years ago and last year’s winner. Anyone may nominate a candidate to the upcoming race, and nominations are published and discussed. The most recent administrator then appoints a delegate for the current year.
For further information on the Finnish branch of NoFF, contact Ben Roimola at <ben.roimola @ sci.fi>.