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  • Turn off your phone and put it away. Otherwise, it’ll just distract you and other audience members.
  • If you want to talk with another audience member, go outside. Chatting while the panelists are talking is rude.
  • If you want to ask a question of the panelists, you’ll need to get their attention. Sit up front and wear an eye-catching color; bright red works well. The panel may have time for only a few questions, so prep yours before the moderator asks for them, and raise your hand (or get in line) as soon as the moderator opens the floor.
  • When you speak to the panelists, ask a question. Don’t throw out a comment, an opinion, or even a compliment to the panelists unless you follow it up with a question — for instance, “I think movies based on comics give too much credit to the writers and artists who made the comics. What do you think?”
  • In addition, as my colleague Shane Snoke has said, don’t talk about yourself. You and the other audience members are there because they want to know about the panelists and their work, not about you.
  • If you want to talk with the panelists after the panel, don’t block or delay their leaving the room. The convention probably needs the room for the next panel, and the panelist may have some place to go.

Next: Tips for panelists.