We don't know how he interacted with the rest of AX's staff. His press staff seemed to think well of him, which is an important point in his favor. But his interactions with the fan press were terrible.
The big issue is that Chase would say things that turned out to be false. For example, he told a certain press outlet that they would be able to photograph concerts and interview some of the musical guests. Plans were made. Resources were committed. Right before the con, they got a flat refusal. Similar things have happened with guest interview requests. They get filled out, and as far as we can tell, vanish into the ether, neither confirmed nor denied until the end of the con. There are, in short, communication issues.
Chase also abused his position with AX by appropriating the press contact list for his own use. I'm not sure if anyone's mentioned this outright, but everyone on AX's press list has been getting spam for Crunchyroll from Chase.
Then there's the ticketing fiasco that we saw this year. Let's recap:
There weren't enough press tickets. It sounds petty of me to complain, but the fact is that the press need press tickets. We're really doing our best at the con to get photos, attend events, and write coverage we're trying to make sure the con gets its money's worth. Standing in line makes that difficult.
My real mistake, though, was that I tried to wait in the standard attendee line, just like every other con-goer. I was told that I had to go to the press office and get a press ticket, which of course they had already run out of. What's the point of the Press office if they don't facilitate coverage?
And then there's Chase's position with Guest Relations. Guest-wise, AX has lurched from embarrassment to embarrassment for the last few years, and someone's got to take the blame for failing to improve matters. Remember Momoi Halko?
And they haven't improved things. At AX this year, Mana found himself performing on Thursday afternoon. I arrived at the convention while Mana's concert was going on. It may well have been an incredible concert. I don't know anyone who managed to see it. From what we heard, he was. . . less than pleased with the empty hall. The same goes for Morning Musume, which also had an afternoon time slot. They had expected a packed hall, and our sources say that they were not happy with the 80% capacity they actually received.
Doubly so considering they were bumped for AX Idol.
Even if this wasn't the result of Chase's malice and how could it have been it was still incumbent on Guest Relations to fight for better use of their very expensive guests. We're not saying that Chase sabotaged the guests. That would be ridiculous. We are saying that he did a bad job, which is a bigger crime by some standards.
Finally, we've got AX's interactions with their corporate sponsors. As head of Marketing, Chase would have been responsible for maintaining good relations all around. Viz decides to pull out of Anime Expo while stepping up their marketing efforts elsewhere. Crunchyroll takes over Viz's spot the AX exhibit hall. What happened there, and who's to blame? Losing Viz was a blow. The dealer's hall giveaways, the sponsorship, the guest or two they usually bring all gone.
Chase's firing was not an example of wrongful termination. He stepped up and assumed some big responsibilities, and part of that is taking the blame when things go wrong.
This is part of an ongoing series on the pre-AX 2010 trainwreck. Please read the others if you'd like.