Many attendees at this week's London Screenings event were left fuming after discovering that a UKP90 registration fee charged through website londonscreenings.com was not validated by the event's organisers.
The site, ran by Parent Productions and XSDNet, has long claimed to be the official London Screenings site, and used this unauthorised title to persuade buyers and sellers to part with their cash for a registration badge. However, event organisers Fusion and International Media Resources had not given their consent to registration through londonscreenings.com, making the delegate badges, in the words of an attendee who asked to be unnamed, 'utterly useless and a complete scam'.
The site offered both buyers and sellers the chance to save the hassle of giving business cards at screenings by using a delegate badge in return for a UKP90 charge. While the idea had been long discussed by the event's organisers, the web-site failed to get their approval before marketing the badges.
At the first screenings on Monday morning over a third of buyers wore the badges; by the second screening only a handful did as they realised no one was noting down their registration numbers. As the day moved on tempers broke, with one buyer shouting at a member of staff employed by the event demanding a refund, only to realise that their argument was with Parent Productions. By Monday afternoon badges were hidden or discarded as attendees realised showing one amounted to wearing a sticker labelled 'sucker'.
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