Name Tags -- The Summary


Message 6281 · 20 Jan 1997 19:22:33 · Variable-width font · Whole thread

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Greetings --

I hadn't anticipated that name tags would generate heat, but they did. I
heard from nearly 50 list members, several of whom requested anonymity. A
number of people feel _very_ strongly about their positions. It probably
won't be a surprise, but we reached no consensus (although we came close on
one issue). And, once again, the creativity of Scottish Country Dancers came

The short answer: name tags won by a nose.

However, no one style of name tag predominated. I thought we had a clear
loser -- up until the very end, no one approved of the stick-on tags.
 Several people said they would rather go without a name tag than put one of
those on their clothing. But at last I heard from one dancer who prefers the
adhesive backed style.

Rectangular plastic sleeves were the winner, divided into two classes -- with
pins and with clips. Most people who like these stressed the need to spend
the money to get the best quality; the cheaper ones tend to damage clothing
or come apart. They suggested recycling -- asking dancers to keep the insert
but turn in the plastic at the end of the event. Pins won over clips. One
person recommended sleeves that have both a pin and a clip.

Round metallic button name tags came next, although people wanted them in
differing sizes, from discrete little ones to large *size of your fist*

A couple people suggested pocket style name tags: a rectangular plastic
sleeve attached to a tab that slips into a breast pocket. A couple others
suggested necklace style tags, either on ribbons or chains, to be worn around
the neck. There were a couple suggestions for ribbon backed tags.

The lone soul who like adhesive backed tags was joined by a few other people
who said, on a second canvas, that they could be happy with those, but only
if the tags didn't say *Hello, My Name Is.*

Most people preferred name tags on which the first name of the wearer is
clearly readable (across the set, from 5 feet, from 10 feet, from 20 feet).
 Some wanted the last name equally readable; some wanted the branch or
hometown of the wearer clearly indicated.

There was almost an equal split on people who wanted fancy artwork on the
name tag (so it would serve as a keepsake) and people who wanted a very plain
tag (so it would not clash with clothing).

A couple ladies have sashes or pouches for their dance books and they attach
the name tags to those. Other ladies have favored name tags they have pinned
in the center of their sashes. Many people bring their own name tags to
events *just in case.* A couple groups don't provide name tags but ask people
to bring their own.

People who didn't want name tags have a wide variety of reasons. The most
common one was that no name tags would *force* people to talk more directly
to each other. A couple men objected to having to stare at a woman's chest
in order to figure out her name, and a couple women objected to men staring
at their chests rather than just asking a name. Several women objected to
the fact that men placed their name tags on their jackets, which they then
took off after the second dance or so. Damage to clothing was cited as a
factor by both women and men.

Several people suggested making name tags optional. A couple suggested
offering two or three different styles of name tags at each event from which
dancers could choose. One suggestion was a name card which could be used to
reserve one's dinner place and then, at dancing, people could slide over --
openly or covertly -- to check out the name. Someone else suggested a
seating chart with names. A deep pockets idea was a photo wall -- taking
instant pictures of people at the beginning, having them sign the picture,
and then posting the pictures on a bulletin board.

Everyone who mentioned it agreed that name tags were a MUST at workshop
classes. Teachers requested that the tags be worn on the upper body, not at
the waist. People commented that name tags were less necessary at a workshop
ball than at a freestanding event.

As a side note, the Chicago Ball Committee had intended to put name labels on
the back of each Ball program. However, the company doing the booklet
copying managed to twice cut the programs in the wrong direction. We ended
up assembling booklets on the steps as people were signing in. Good idea,
bad execution. Oops.

I would like to thank everyone who took time to comment on the name tag
issue. It was good hearing from you.

Ree Grisham
Chicago, IL USA

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