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Brian "Kurst" Mogged

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  • #29278 Quote
    Tell us about yourself

    My name is Brian Mogged you can call me Kurst.

    Currently my trade is “Lead software developer”. And over my working career, I’ve been working on projects involving web, print, color, and/or marketing as either as a developer or a QA tester/Manager.

    But everything else well….

    A little history of myself –

    I grew up in Wisconsin near the Green Bay area and well, I wasn’t exactly a normal child for that area.  I wasn’t interested in FFA (Future farmers of America). I wasn’t interested in hunting. I wasn’t interested in cars, and I wasn’t defiantly not interested in the Green Bay Packers. I was the one that was more interested in playing music than throwing a football.  I was the one more interested in understanding why, than slamming a hammer.  I was the person in the room that couldn’t relate to other people. I had no personal connections that I could normally connect to. Also, because of my attention span, I couldn’t pay enough focus to write; so I wasn’t’ always a grade A student and that put strain on my family and teachers.  It adds up. I just didn’t fit in a small town.  So, I spent more time learning about music, learning about computers, playing computer games, learning about the world than interacting with people. My escape, when not reading or learning how computers work, was really cartoons (and TV in general).  I could only control the TV during the non prime time. So between soap operas, washed up sitcoms, and cartoons,  I soaked up a lot of cartoons.  Other than TV I did spend time working in 4-H and helping out non profits.  I tried to get into theater but my own personal shyness and my short attention span stopped me but because of that I found out that I could do some costuming for non profit events and other clubs as a way to help out and be involved with the local community.

    One of the disadvantages of growing up in a small town area using the BBS and other networks were costly.  I planned my connections wisely and had to queue up questions/download weeks in advance so, when I could connect at 300 baud, I could make the best use of my time.  So I didn’t find as many things about the furry fandom but I found out about role playing and it peaked my creative interest.

    Once I graduated high school, I moved to the twin cities during my college years.

    While I was in college, getting my degree in computer science and business administration, I stumbled onto the internet.  I kind of grew with the net and started diving.  The video game/computer game world was easy to find.  I found a lot of connections and people, but I started to explore communities like the werewolves, the transformation, and furry community… watching the communities… just learning and seeing how they survived. I started to learn more and more about furry community, but at the same time was more comfortable with video, computer, and pen and paper role playing gaming.  After I left college, I moved to the twin cities and watched as websites started to pop up around furry fandom like: Werewovles in Suberbia, Furnation, and others.

    At the end of 1998 I started to feel more comfortable about the internet and people, so I put started to interact more.  I started talking to site designers and publishers and I found out that I was needed in a lot of places.  This is where I started to interact with a lot of people in the background, in the transformation and the furry community.

    But I still was in the background – I didn’t really step in the foreground in people’s view until 2000 when I met and partnered up with Eva “Rog Minotaur” Burton.  When we started working, not only did I get some of my best friends in the world, like Cody… my view of the fandom changed.  I saw how people work and used other people.  During these years after working and seeing what happened, I came up with a personal rule that I was willing to work for people, organizations, and even companies, if they met my overriding goals of people treating other well and, just as important, helping out the community more.

    During this time I also tried to find the local furs.  Because of the local drama, when I finally tried to go out to our local meet with the Frozen Furs, I either couldn’t find them or worse, when I spoke up to ask where they were people were disinterested in telling me or I found out they were forced out for some reasons.

    That pushed me away and I couldn’t figure out if I wanted to be part of this group… This community.  They seem to be all over the place and disorganized.  Which confused me.

    I didn’t see the SNCFurs until a little after Frozen Furs disintegrated.  I started going to events like Blue Healer’s BBQ, biweekly meets and picnics.  I started to enjoy going to things that are local… not just going one thousand miles once a year to see furries.

    At this time, I slowly stopped doing things I did before for cons and other events.  I slowly lost track of the pen and paper rpg community.  I also stopped going to as many conventions that weren’t furry.

    I replaced those things with side projects with partnerships and projects with friends in the community.  Almost all of them were for fun.  I hate taking money for these things, like programming or managing and a lot of time my job doesn’t allow it. I tried to do all of these as non-commercial or low commercial projects except one.  I became friends with Rabbit Valley and because of things that kept battering them, including a lawsuit over their name, they needed help.  And if they went under, a lot of artists, comic book writers, and readers would be effected.  I basically agreed to help them out, with no expectation of any payment or compensation…  because I didn’t want comics and printed materials to disappear from the fandom.  And if we lost publishers and distributors we would lose that part of the fandom.  It’s an agreement I still have to this day.

    I also ordered my first suit doing this time.  It didn’t come right away 😉

    Eva and I were together through a few events in 2004, which produced some of my high points in the fandom. At that time we were unstoppable team.

    I had a lot of friends and a lot of family afar but my local connections were still a little weak.

    While I made some new core friends here in the local community – I still didn’t feel a part of the community.  It really felt the last few years that I was more involved with cons being/working at cons.  At the time SNCFurs was changing to MNFurs and I wasn’t exactly sure what I could do next.

    After asking around I realize we didn’t have a web presence. I made a mockup of the site of what I thought would be a modern MNFurs site at the time.  And we got some positive reactions, but I really wasn’t interested in the running, administrating, and theming/skinning it to be a proper site.  I gave it to the community and well… kind of not did anything more with it.

    During this time, I watched the group grow.  It was a weird group, because it had no structure; plus people kind of started to do what they wanted to do with the group… with no thoughts what that meant.  It made the group very chaotic at times and caused it to take steps back and fall back into same old routines.

    I got my Fursuit and I continue helping out friends and partners in the furry community. At the prodding of Eva and a few other artists, I started to take pictures and decided it was a good hobby to try to break away from the normal routines.

    I eventually decided something important – the MNFurs site was under constant attack and was just filled with spam.  It also didn’t evolve and wasn’t what I expected it to be: a way to communicate between furries without the worries and problems of other networks.  So, I recreated MNFurs website and then asked the people who were involved at the time to maintain it.  They all agreed, so I started working and over time once it cleaned up it started to get use again.

    Also, during this time, Eva and I broke up.  While I knew it was something that was going to happen, it devastated me.  Because of a lot of my relationship and interaction was occurring far away, I came to the conclusion I wanted to shift myself away from the far focus I was doing to something more local.

    The events locally were getting bigger and bigger until the group, as a whole, realized we needed to formalize what and who MNFurs was.  I remember getting invited to the “stone table” that brought the MNFurs into a real group.  During that time, I brought in a good college friend Mouring, who wasn’t part of the community, to take a look into it.  We formalized the steering committee and MNFurs started to become what we know what it as today.

    To shorten a few things up – My life stabilize around my current job, but at the same time, the last four years have been a whirlwind of helping out Minnesota Furs, stabilizing my job, rebuilding the MNFurs website again, going to other conventions and community groups to observe what they have been doing… to see how to get our first con off the ground, and getting Minnesota Furs to be a non profit.

    There’s a little bit more about my history I should pull out:

    Volunteering – I joined 4-H at an early age because well my sister was going there and it kills 2 birds with one stone.  Not only did I grow in rank/responsibility, ie. becoming their treasurer, but I also worked with the organization to help out the community including running events for the Elderly.  I also worked with another non-profit and started doing costuming for them: from Saint Bernard to wearing an E.T. costume.  So I blame non-profit work for making me love costuming 😉

    After that, I did some volunteering at cons.  But then, I started to volunteer for people and groups programming and that evolved to helping out organization with websites. I didn’t really start volunteering for MNFurs proper until 2005. From there, I helped with website, programming, flyers, events, planning, social media, treasury, legal research… ok, well everything but Secretary duties or being a president.

    Education – As I mentioned above I went to college & got a degree for Computer Science and Business Administration.  Why that?  Because people kept telling me there is no jobs or careers in Computer Science so I needed something to fall back on. In my professional career, other than more computer training, I have been taking business refreshers to keep up and improve management skills.  I have also had non-profit training to extend what I have learn in the business and college about non-profits.

     

    Why do you wish to sit on the MNFurs board?

    Well to be honest I want to be on the Minnesota Furs board of directors.  The MNFurs is the name of our community group that runs/organization/and keep track of community group. But, the reason why I am wanting to sit on the board of Minnesota Furs is really because I want the best organization in the furry fandom.  I want to make sure we are a community that exists for people, one that anyone can join, that we are a group with many voices, that can get together, have fun, and help out our community friends.

    That’s all – in a perfect world I would just melt away and allow the group to just be awesome.  People do not need to know that I am there if everything goes right

    If I do sit on the Minnesota Furs board I wish these things I can do for the group

    1. Ensure that everyone is treated as a equal and a member of our community.  We aren’t multiple groups; we are one group of friends.
    2. Our convention, Furry Migration, and MNFurs… our community group get along.
    3. We have a convention, a successful one, and still have one, year after year
    4. MNFurs is independent of the convention
    5. Minnesota Furs provides ways for people to communicate and get together, even if it’s not directly through a “Minnesota Furs/MNFurs/Furry Migration” Sponsored event
    6. We act in professional legal manor
    7. We protect our member’s privacy
    8. Our members have things to do that interest them.
    9. To help empower people to put on their own events
    10. To help improve our communication between our members, outside the community, and other groups furry and non furry groups
    11. In generally improve our community so the community is more involved in itself.
    12. We become less reliant on bi-weekly meets and more into doing things outside of it.  The bi-weekly meets are nice as a “time to do” things, but in itself, because of the locations, they can’t sustain the amount of people we keep getting in the community.  We need to find alternatives and ways to for people in events.
    13. Get more people volunteering and helping out every part of Minnesota Furs.
    14. Let all parts of Minnesota Furs act and perform the non profit duties of education and being part of a healthy community
    15. Educate people on what the Minnesota Furs, MNFurs, Furry Migration board does.
    16. Provide training and skills in anything I can provide, so I am not doing all the things.

    How will you continue to volunteer in the community after being elected to the board?

    If elected, I pledge to continue to provide support to the community and the convention where I am needed.

    That being said, if I am elected back I will continue to support our community by helping out MNFurs on the web site, to provide IT support for MNFurs, to provide support for MNFurs’s social media, to provide help in print. I will also try to make sure I can help out the community in any way elected that the community group and Minnesota Furs wants me to help.

    I also plan to help out Furry Migration with their registration, their IT department, and anything else that our con chairman asks for.

    I will also do any treasury duties for both the convention and MNFurs if the board would like me to do it.

    But more importantly – I am willing to help and train any person to take over the duties of these things.  I want to reduce what I am doing so the things I do so I can do better and I also want to get more people involved.

     

    What brought you to the furry fandom?

    A place to go.  I wanted to be in a where I can talk to people and not feel silly.

    A place to share.  Share my enjoyment of art, literature, and people

    A place to be with friends.  Friends who relate to you and are forever.

    A place where I belong.  Home is where my heart is and that home is furry.

     

    Who/What is your inspiration in life?

    Wile E Coyote was one of my first big influences.  For many of my years I had an older sister and well, that was it in the neighborhood.  So television was the first bringer of friends.  And nothing was better than Wile E.  I always saw him because I could relate to him.  He taught me true grit and dertimanation in face of failure might lead to more failure, but eventually I feel you will get there in end.  He also made me want to be an actor… but that’s another story.

    My father – I was very proud of him for how he ran his business and how he tried to do the best for his family.

    Chronicles of Narnia – When I was growing up I could order books off the Scholastic book club list so I ordered a lot of random stuff… some of them good some of them bad.  One of them was the Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe. From there, I got the whole series and read some a few more times. It really influenced my life deeply as it fit part of my moral belief and gave me some hope when reading them.

    My teachers – the good ones 😉 – they instilled the desire to learn and keep learning.

    Sandman – Neil Gaiman series – Other than being a turning point of the British comic revolution, the stories still stand up pretty well today and something when I feel down for some reason after I read it I feel wonderful.

    Richard Stalman, Ada Lovelace, Grace Hooper, Dennis Ritchie, Ken Thompson, Linus Torvell, Jim Hall, Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, and more – People who took the ideas, the mathematics, and sometimes marketing, to make what computers and technology what it is today.

    Eva, Trejaan, The Werewolf, the Rabbits – They are truly were big influence in who I am and how I view the furry fandom.  It also pushed me to be a better person, not just a member of a community, but someone who tries to do more.

    Furry Community In general – For being awesome. I’m still influence by early artist and writers.  But I am finding new people to admire in the fandom almost every day.

     

    Being elected to the MNFurs board makes you a public figure. How will you adapt to that?

    Being that I have been, in one way or another, in the lime light for 14 years, it’s something I’m still not used to.  Getting calls from media, from television like Jerry Springer, is one thing.  Getting calls from police is another.

    Also dealing with friends, family, and coworkers that may think Furry is strange is also sometimes not fun.

    But seriously, it’s something I think about, how I handle, how I talk to people, and the effect in my daily life. I go to panels at cons, I go listen to what other organizations do to handle it, I listen to people telling stories about what happens.

    I know that my name is out on public documents, I know my name is on signed contracts, I know people can find who is behind the suit.

    It really does affect your life – you get calls at work, emails after hours, and other times.  You just have to tell people, “Excuse me.” and deal with it.  Talk… and understand what you say can reflect on the community.  What you are doing will be seen.

    No matter the scenario, it’s something I signed up for I’m not afraid of the consequences on my life and job.  I want to make sure I do the right things for people and the community,,, and that is not hiding it’s being honest and truthful with the public and my friends.

     

    What message do you have for the MNFurs community?

    The MNFurs community is changing and it’s growing.  This is a good thing.  We now have a wider range of ages, we have a wider range of people, and a wider range of interests.  But we need to watch out.

    The worse thing this community can do is segment it out into groups.  We all want the same things, we want to have friends, we want to do things, we want to have fun.  That is the nature of being people, being furries and if we separate ourselves, we won’t find new friends.

    I believe that, as a community, we can all work together and evolve who we are and what we do.  I think what we have been doing year after year needs to change, it needs to evolve.  Evolve into what?  That is part of the journey – a journey we are all going to go on together.  It’s not something that one person, a board, or even a community group determines by itself.  It takes the whole community to choose to change and evolve.

    And I hope I am there for the next phase.

    In the end our local community is awesome – it only can get better.

     

    • This topic was modified 7 years, 9 months ago by Yancha.

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    MNFurs Board member & Furry Migration Staff (programing & help desk)

    Come say hi on the MNFurs Discord!

    Posts on the MNFurs forums are of my own opinion and do not reflect that of MNFurs or chartered events unless otherwise stated.

    #29613 Quote
    Mr Hyperyote,

    i wish i could say im surprised, but the truth is im not. True to form, you came through, and took the time to answer fully everyones questions…including my own. I appreciate this to no end. If your efforts in this election and your prior term are any indication of how your future involvement with this group will go than this community will be very priveleged to have you, in one capacity or another.

    -Respectfully,

    Cence

    #29651 Quote
    I’m sorry I’m not surprising but that isn’t in my nature 😉

    I just am who I am and that is me until tomorrow then I will be me tomorrow.

    Member of Minnesota Furs a 501c3 Non Profit, former Convention Chairman for Furry Migration, volunteer, and always doings lots of other stuff.

    Feel free to ask questions because I'm here for you!
    Kurst "YipYap" Hyperyote

    #29654 Quote
    Lol, i actually wrote that wrong…  I hope the correct message came through. I was saying that you doing a great job, was predictable 8)
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