Edward Kramer, accused pedophile and co-founder of Dragon*Con, is in the spotlight once more as part of a boycott against his involvement in Dragon*Con. Kramer, who is very influential in geek circles, has a long, messy history of litigation and accusations, most recently in 2011 when he was found in a Milford, CT hotel room with a 14-year-old boy in direct violation of his parole. "Swamp Thing" creator/contributor Nancy A. Collins has crossed paths with Kramer before:
In the 1990s, Collins had a professional relationship with Kramer that included co-editing an anthology of horror stories and increasing involvement in DragonCon. She broke ties with Kramer shortly before his arrest in 2000 as a result of what she says was the inappropriate interest Kramer had toward her 12-year-old stepson. After Kramer’s arrest, Collins was among the first to speak publicly against him, a decision that led to schism in the community between Kramer’s defenders and those who believed the charges.
Steve Bissette, co-creator of the "John Constantine" character, said:
Now that there are public confirmations and articles vindicating Nancy and everything Nancy has been battling to warn folks about, the worm(s) are turning—though she has yet to receive a single public (or private) apology from the many professionals who maligned her and her work while they were busily defending DragonCon and its association with Kramer. Thus, Nancy has been pre-emptively “punished” for years now for speaking up and speaking out about what she perceived as a dangerous situation that continued to put children in harm’s way.
Collins has launched a boycott to officially separate Kramer from Dragon*Con:
Everyone tells me social media has the potential for creating social change never seen before in human history. Okay, then I’d like to test it by seeing if social media can cut off the flow of money from DragonCon to accused child molester (and the convention’s co-owner) Ed Kramer, who has been using the 150K+ a year he receives each year from DragonCon to avoid trial and manipulate the justice system to allow him free reign to prey upon children, even while under supposed house arrest. All you have to do is publicly declare you will never attend DragonCon again as long as Edward Kramer profits from the convention.
DragonCon has had over 12 years to sever ties with this man, but has failed to do so. Although the convention’s chairman has bought enough shares from Ed Kramer to qualify as the controlling shareholder, Kramer refuses to be bought out. No matter what DragonCon does or says, funds from the convention will continue to go to Edward Kramer until either he dies or the corporation that runs the convention dissolves and reincorporates under another name. DragonCon knows what needs to be done, but has been dragging its feet on this matter, and has gone to great trouble over the last 12 years to hide the fact that they continue to fund Edward Kramer’s lifestyle. But now the cat’s out of the bag (in large part due to Kramer’s own decision to sue them for a larger share of the convention’s profits) and there’s no putting it back in.
In response, Dragon*Con posted to its Facebook page:
For the record, Edward Kramer resigned from the Dragon*Con convention in the year 2000. Since that time, he has had no role in the direction or management of the convention; however, he remains a stockholder despite our desires otherwise.
Since Edward Kramer’s arrest in 2000, we have made multiple attempts to sever all ties between Edward Kramer and Dragon*Con including several efforts to buy Edward Kramer’s stock shares. Unfortunately, Edward Kramer's response to our buyout efforts was repeated litigation against Dragon*Con...thus our buyout efforts have been stalled. The idea proposed of dissolving the company and reincorporating has been thoroughly investigated and is not possible at this point. Legally, we can’t just take away his shares. We are unfortunately limited in our options and responses as we remain in active litigation.
The current flood of “information” about this litigation appears to have been taken from the multiple lawsuits against Dragon*Con filed by Edward Kramer and his lawyers (i.e., Edward Kramer's arguments and allegations, not documented facts). To our dismay, much of this misinformation is being quoted as pure fact despite the reality that a court of law determined that many of the facts and figures provided by Mr. Kramer in his law suits were false, inaccurate or completely fictitious.
It is our sincere hope that the end is in sight and that the upcoming trial(s) in Gwinnett County will provide a resolution of Edward Kramer’s guilt or innocence, and therefore a cause of legally divorcing ourselves from him once and for all.
Want more? Subscribe to this column; follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, and the web; buy my books: The Evolution of Fantasy Role-Playing Games, The Well of Stars, and Awfully Familiar. Become an Examiner and get paid to write today!