#ChadOfFENS was born in June 2020 when the FENS Forum went virtual due to Covid-19.
For many, this was the first time attending a virtual conference. In the absence of in-person interactions, the conversation on Twitter during FENS 2020 was especially active. A series of hashtags emerged to connect FENS attendees around different themes. #FENSatHome showed how everyone was engaging with the conference from their homes and soon everyone was posting photos of their #PetsofFENS and #PlantsofFENS.
Dozens of Sim-like attendees milled around the virtual conference hall on an endless loop. One virtual attendee, in particular, caught the attention of Erin Harris (@NeuroErinPhD) who tweeted:
Ok #FENS2020: who is your favourite Sim in the virtual FENS hall? Mine is this guy ⬇️ I feel like he would be named Chad. Comment below with your fave or why you think Chad looks so frustrated. #FENSathome
along with a video of “Chad” pacing around the conference hall. Other FENS members commented on #ChadOfFENS and began devising backstories for the other virtual attendees. Chad was even spotted at other virtual conferences in the following months…at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference in 2020 and the 2021 European College of Neuropsychopharmacology virtual meeting.
Click here to see the original tweet and how it all started.