Convention Policies

The following are Anime Boston's policies and rules regarding membership to the convention. These policies and rules apply to all members of Anime Boston, upon acceptance of their membership and badge.

  1. What Membership to Anime Boston Entails
  2. General Convention Rules
  3. Supplementary Policies
    1. Props Policy
    2. Hotel Code of Conduct
    3. Autograph Policy
    4. Dealers' Room Policy
    5. Flyer Policy
    6. Photography Policy
    7. Personal Sound Device Policy
    8. Special Event Seating
  4. Prohibited Items
  5. Prohibited Conduct
  6. Repercussions for Violations
  7. Accessibility at Anime Boston

1. What Membership to Anime Boston Entails

  • Upon acceptance of Membership to Anime Boston, members become responsible for their personal liability. Members assume all risks with respect to the dangers incidental to Anime Boston.
  • Membership Badges are required for entry into Anime Boston and must be visible at all times. Membership Badges are non-replaceable, non-refundable, and non-transferable.
  • Acceptance of a Membership Badge constitutes consent to the use of the wearer's image or likeness in any recording, transmission, or reproduction of Anime Boston for use by Anime Boston or the New England Anime Society (NEAS).
  • Failure to comply with the published rules of Anime Boston, including disruptive or inappropriate behavior, will result in the revocation of Membership and ejection from Anime Boston. Anime Boston may revoke membership and eject anyone from the convention at anytime for any reason without a refund.

2. General Convention Rules

  • Follow requests and directions of Anime Boston, Facility, and hotel staff.
  • Anime Boston, NEAS, the Massachusetts Convention Center Authority (MCCA), and hotels are not responsible for personal items. Unattended and lost items will be turned over to proper authorities (Facility Management, Boston Police Department, Boston Fire Department, Massachusetts State Police).
  • Appropriate attire is required at all times, including shoes, pants/shorts/skirts, and shirts/tops.
  • Each event room has limited space and seating. Seating is not guaranteed to any persons. Standing room is allowed only at the discretion of Anime Boston or Facility staff.
  • Lining up is permitted no earlier than 2 hours prior for general events, and 30 minutes prior to autograph sessions. Documented disabled persons, staff, on-duty volunteers, guests of honor, and dealers are not required to stand in line for events.
  • Possession or consumption of alcohol is only permitted in designated locations.
  • The legal drinking age in Massachusetts is 21 years of age. Anyone under legal age found drinking or intoxicated will be reported to Facility Management and the Boston Police Department.
  • Smoking (including the use of vaping devices) is only permitted within designated locations outside the buildings.
  • Theft, assault, drug use, and other illegal activities will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
  • Discrimination and/or harassment of any form will not be tolerated.
  • Do not hinder or obstruct the flow of foot traffic within the convention area.
  • Individuals may be asked to remove large or unwieldy bags, props, or other accessories from the convention areas.
  • Questions, concerns, or complaints should be brought to Anime Boston staff at either Convention Operations, the Info Desk, or Registration Customer Service.

3. Supplementary Policies

  1. Props Policy (Updated 2/22/16):

    • Real weapons are banned in the convention areas, regardless if they are functional or not, per MCCA Regulations and Massachusetts General Laws.
    • All items as listed in the Prohibited Items list are not allowed. There are no exceptions to this list, regardless as to whether the item is functional or not.
    • All prop weapons must be inspected and peace-bonded each day of the convention.
    • Prop Inspection Checkpoints will now be established at all entrances to the Hynes Convention Center. They will be staffed by MCCA Public Safety and Boston Police.
    • Other props may be required to be inspected and peace-bonded by Anime Boston Security, at the discretion of Anime Boston staff.
    • Unapproved items will be will be cataloged and stored. Upon exit of the convention center, the owner may reclaim it. Any item found to violate city, state, or federal law may not be returned at the discretion of the Boston Police Department.
    • Anime Boston Security cannot approve a prop prior to the convention.
    • Prop weapons should not be carried outside the convention center. The Boston Police Department will treat anyone carrying realistic looking weapons as a legitimate threat and will take appropriate action according to Massachusetts General Law and Boston City Ordinance 16-5A.
    • Members who do not comply with this policy or are deemed repeat offenders will be subject to removal from MCCA facilities.
  2. Hotel Code of Conduct

    • If an individual is responsible for damages to hotel property, or endangering his, her, or their own or anyone else's safety, he, she, or they and potentially any or all of his, her, or their roommates will be ejected from the hotel and have his, her, or their Membership to Anime Boston revoked. Individuals involved will be held legally and financially responsible. Hotel administration may prosecute the offenders to the fullest extent of the law.
    • Noise levels must be kept to a minimum at all times. After three disturbances from a room, the guests will be ejected from hotel property and their Membership to Anime Boston may be revoked.
    • Hotel guests must comply with the listed occupancy limits for each room. Failure to do so may result in being ejected from hotel property.
  3. Autograph Policy

    How to obtain a free autograph pass

    • Autograph passes will be handed out starting at 8 a.m. on Friday in the Sheraton Grand Ballroom and at 8 a.m. on Saturday & Sunday inside Constitution A.
    • Autograph passes are only valid for the day they are handed out.
    • Pre-registered attendees who have not yet picked up their badge may pick up autograph passes if they bring a PRINTED copy of their pre-registration confirmation email along with a photo ID.
    • Doors will close at 9:30am on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Anyone inside the Autographs Pass Distribution Session location will be eligible to wait for an available autograph pass.
    • Passes will be given out on a first come, first serve basis.
    • Each attendee may obtain only one pass per Anime Boston guest and only two passes per day during the initial Autographs Pass Distribution Session. *Any remaining passes for that day will be available at the Operations counter once the initial Autographs Pass Distribution Session has concluded.
    • There are approximately 100 passes given out per Anime Boston guest depending on the length of the guest’s autograph session. This pass guarantees an autograph.
    • Some guest's autograph sessions have overflow passes available. This pass permits a person to wait at the back of the autograph line but does not guarantee an autograph.
    • Lost passes cannot be replaced – NO EXCEPTIONS!
    • No passes will be handed out in the autographs lines. Attendees without passes will be turned away at the session – NO EXCEPTIONS!

    Autograph Session Rules

    • Attendees are not allowed to line up for an autograph session more than 30 minutes before the scheduled start time.
    • Pass holders must arrive before the scheduled autograph session start time or risk losing their ability to obtain an autograph during that session.
    • In order to allow as many attendees as possible the opportunity to get an autograph, attendees will be limited to one item per session.
    • All items should be prepared for signing before reaching the autograph table.
    • Photos are only allowed at the discretion of the guests.
    • Going behind the guest's table or having the guest move in front of the table is not allowed.
    • Only legally obtained official merchandise and/or the Anime Boston program book will be guaranteed to be signed. Fan-produced materials may be signed at the guest's discretion. Absolutely no bootlegs.
    • Attendees participating in disruptive or rude behavior may be asked to leave the autograph area.
    • Attendees must follow all staff instructions.
    • Anime Boston reserves the right to cap or end the line to keep events (and guests) on schedule.

    Exhibit Hall Autograph Sessions
    Some guests may choose to sign autographs at a table in the Exhibit Hall for a small per-person fee. This is purely at the discretion of the guest and is not organized by Anime Boston staff. We at Anime Boston will do our best to help make this experience positive for our attendees, but please understand that we do not have control over things such as session timing and costs.

    • Attendees participating in disruptive or rude behavior may be asked to leave the autograph area.
    • Attendees must follow all staff instructions.
  4. Dealers' Room Policy

    • Dealers will charge the current Massachusetts State Sales Tax of 6.25%. They may not charge sales tax from other states.
    • Individual clothing items under $175 are exempt from MA State Sales Tax. Clothing items over $175 are only taxed on the amount over $175.
    • Bootleg and unlicensed merchandise are not permitted to be sold in the Dealers' Room.
    • If you have any questions, issues, or complaints, please contact Anime Boston staff at the table located at the main Dealers' Room entrance.
  5. Flyer Policy

    • One pile of flyers may be placed on the table near the Hynes Info Desk by a person with a Membership Badge at no charge.
    • Flyers from other businesses and conventions are welcomed provided they do not contain any adult, illegal, or inappropriate content.
    • Do not move or obscure other flyers.
    • Characters, names, and logos of Anime Boston and NEAS properties may not be used without express written consent.
    • Remaining flyers will be discarded at the end of the convention if not reclaimed.
    • Anime Boston staff may remove flyers for any reason at any time.
  6. Photography Policy

    • Please ask for permission before photographing other attendees and respect an individual's choice to decline being photographed.
    • Photography umbrellas, backdrops, tripods, and stand-alone lighting units are not permitted in the convention center, except for those who are credentialed members of the Press.
    • All official Anime Boston Photographers can be identified by their Staff Badge. You may always ask to see a Staff Badge to verify if someone is a member of Anime Boston Staff.
    • If participating in off-site photography sessions, use public locations such as a park rather than private locations such as hotel rooms.
  7. Personal Sound Device Policy

    • Keep the volume low within the convention facilities and other public areas.
    • If Anime Boston or Facility staff asks any individual to turn down the volume on a device, he, she, or they must comply immediately.
    • Three incidents will result in the offender having his, her, or their Membership to Anime Boston revoked and he, she, or they may potentially be prohibited from attending future Anime Boston and NEAS events.
  8. Special Event Seating

    • If you've been to Anime Boston before, you might know all about the tickets for concerts and the masquerade. If you haven't joined us before, welcome! We have lots of fun and some fantastic acts lined up!
    • This year, we’ve changed our process to hopefully make things clearer. For free events that have a limited number of seats, you’ll need to pick up a Queued Event Pass to be guaranteed a seat. This does not mean you will be turned away at the door without a pass. It does mean people with passes will be seated first. Once they’ve been seated, anyone without a pass will be seated. These passes are only to guarantee you’ll have a seat. So fret not if you missed getting a pass on Friday because you were too busy adulting at work (we feel you).
    • Our staff members will be at the Queued Event Pass table located on the third floor of the Hynes across from room 308 on Friday and Saturday, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. (or sooner if all passes are given out). Queued Event Passes will only be available on the day of their event. So you can’t pick up passes to Saturday’s event on Friday, they won’t be available yet!
    • One Queued Event Pass per person, per event, and each person must be present with their own badge to pick it up. If you're not sure when your friend will arrive at Anime Boston to pick up their own pass, we recommend selecting floor seating when in the Auditorium; there are more seats available.

4. Prohibited Items

  • Alcohol and illegal substances.
  • Wheeled items (excluding mobility assistance devices), including but not limited to:
    • Rollerblades
    • Skates
    • Skateboards
    • Wheelies
    • Scooters
    • Bicycles
    • Segways/Hoverboards
  • Revealing and/or offensive attire.
  • Signs of any kind. The only exception will be for cosplays where it can be proven that the character has a sign. Please see our Cosplay FAQ for more details.
  • Weapons, including:
    • Knives, firearms, and other weapons as described in the Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 269, Section 10.
    • Real guns (working, disabled, or otherwise).
    • Projectile weapons (pellet guns, airsoft rifles, pistols, disc guns, paintball markers, water pistols, or other liquid "weapons," etc).
    • Metal blades (knives, swords, sharp items, etc).
    • Practice swords including bokens and kendo bamboo practice swords.
    • Chains, spikes, whips, leashes.
    • Any other potentially harmful weapon, prop, or item as determined by Anime Boston Security.
  • Smoke or fog machines or similar devices.
  • Laser pointers or similar devices. These items may not be used in public unless you are officially sanctioned to lead or present a convention seminar, panel, workshop, or other convention-sanctioned event.
  • Drones and other aerial devices.

5. Prohibited Conduct

  • Disruptive behavior, including but not limited to:
    • Running.
    • Screaming, shouting, or yelling.
    • Playing loud music or noise.
    • Horseplay or rowdiness.
    • Unsolicited physical contact.
  • Defacing or damaging MCAA, hotel, Anime Boston, or NEAS properties.
  • Discrimination and/or harassment of any kind to anyone.
  • Obstructing the flow of foot traffic within the convention area.
  • Selling goods and/or services is prohibited, except for authorized exhibitors in the Dealers’ Room and Artists’ Alley, per Massachusetts state law.
  • Alcohol consumption and smoking (including the use of vaping devices) outside of designated areas.
  • Theft, assault, drug use, and any other illegal activities.
  • Nudity and inappropriate attire.

6. Repercussions for Violations
Any of the following repercussions may occur for violations, subject to the discretion of Anime Boston and Facility staff.

  • Verbal warning from Anime Boston or Facility staff.
  • Confiscation of prohibited items. Confiscation may be permanent, or until the item can be safely removed from convention premises.
  • Ejection from convention premises and revocation of Membership to Anime Boston.
  • Barring membership or admittance to future Anime Boston and NEAS events.
  • Ejection from hotel facilities including guest rooms.
  • Financial and legal responsibility for damages.
  • Reporting to the Boston Police Department for illegal activities or substances.

7. Accessibility at Anime Boston

  • Accessibility Stickers Accessibility Stickers can be obtained at the Accessibility Services booth, located in Registration. These stickers are given to any person who might require advanced seating to an event or who may be unable to stand for long periods of time as a result of a disability or injury. One additional sticker may be given to an assistant or companion. Stickers are given out at the discretion of Anime Boston staff to those in need. The sticker is applied to a person’s badge. This sticker allows priority access through the security line and also allows a person advanced seating to major events. Please see the Advanced Seating policy for more information.
  • Advanced Seating Advanced seating will be available for events in the Auditorium, Hall D, or any programming where the room is cleared beforehand. Advanced seating locations are at the discretion of Anime Boston staff. Advanced seating will begin no more than ten minutes prior to general event seating. If seating is already in progress, a person with an Accessibility Sticker may bypass the line and proceed to the entrance. If an event requires a special pass for admission (for example: masquerade, concerts), then a pass must still be presented in order to be seated.
  • Wheelchairs All Anime Boston partner facilities are fully wheelchair accessible. The Hynes Convention Center has a small number of wheelchairs on site that can be rented or borrowed. Please contact the Hynes Convention Center for more information.
  • Bathrooms All facilities have bathrooms that are equipped with handicapped stalls. Please be considerate if you are using one of these stalls to change into your cosplay and allow those who need to use the bathroom first priority.
  • Elevators All facilities are equipped with elevators. Please be aware that during the convention, wait times to use an elevator may be longer than normal.
  • Service Animals Service animals as defined by the ADA are welcome at Anime Boston. The handler is responsible for the care and supervision of his or her service animal. If the animal is found to be disruptive or behaving in an unacceptable way, without action from its handler, Anime Boston reserves the right to ask that the animal be removed. Under the guidelines of the ADA, we require that all service animals be harnessed, leashed, or tethered at all times unless this affects the animal's ability to perform their required task. If you encounter an individual with a service animal, do not pet the animal. Petting a service animal may distract it from its duties. Whether or not to dress a service animal in costume is at the discretion of the handler.
  • Visual Impairment For persons with visual impairment, please see the Advanced Seating policy as listed above.
  • Hearing Impairment For persons with hearing impairment, closed captions may be turned on in any video screening room by request.