Post-mortem of A-to-Z challenge & Hugo Awards

I’ll admit, I kind of half-assed this year’s A-to-Z Challenge. I was maybe going to do something a bit more in-depth and meaningful with it, but then the Hugo Drama got turned up to 11. Frankly that took up more of my time and emotional capacity than I had meant for it to or was really even healthy, perhaps. But sometimes you’ve gotta stick your head out the window and shout “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore.” And that’s how I felt about the attacks and libel which were at their worst at the beginning of April.

I can’t really say that doing the challenge boosted my readership any, nor did it bring many commenters except for those who are ‘just dropping by’. That my post count for April doubled my average without doubling views doesn’t say much concrete, as the content wasn’t quite normal blog fare, but overall I’ll say it didn’t pay off. If things are less crazy next year, I’ll consider doing it again, but if next year’s Hugo Season is just as maddening as this, I can’t say I won’t focus more on the latter. Hugos ranting got me a lot more click-thrus than posting songs.

Speaking of clicks… I got briefly noticed by Mike Glyer as a “less easily identifiable other” on File770 for my post defining what Fan Writer means to me. Luckily, it was not, as I had feared, the Eye of Sauron cast upon my page.

Based on some of the nominating numbers I’ve seen and taking into account a large section of the sci-fi blogosphere’s determination to nuke the Hugos from space, I have some worry for the smaller categories. From what I understand of how No Award works, if it gets a plurality in a category simply because of people who are voting a straight No Award ticket, it will knock out all of those works in minor categories voted on by folks who were actually approaching each category in earnest and trying to vote out of the five based on individual merit. Hopefully the number of jerkass ideologue who REALLY want to spend $40 just to vote a no award straight temper tantrum ticket and smash the trophies so that no one can have them constitutes such a small fraction of the Hugo voters that they won’t edge out even the most obscure categories.

8 responses to “Post-mortem of A-to-Z challenge & Hugo Awards

  1. “if it gets a plurality in a category”

    The Hugo Awards use Instant Run-off Voting, which requires a majority of votes for the winner, not a simple plurality (unlike First Past the Post)

    So if No Award does win, it will require 50% + 1 of the voters in a category to vote that way (following the instant run-offs), or for more people to have ranked No Award above the winner at any place on their ballot than people that ranked the winner above No Award.

    • So, what would happen if the votes split 30% No Award, then 25%, 20%, 15% and 5% in a category for the #1 vote? I presume that No Award would win. I’d think that most people voting No Award would be putting it at #1.

      • If I understood this page correctly:

        The votes for the nominee that got 5% are recounted and sorted for the rest. This proceeds until we have two nominations left, and can pick the prospective winner.

        Then three piles are created. One for the prospective winner, one for those who placed prospective winner under no award, and third votes that listed neither.

        If prospective winner beats the no award pile, award is given. Thus even with 30% of votes going directly for no award… it is possible to get an award from the category.

        Kind of makes me want to write a SF novel called “No Award.”

      • Thanks for helping elucidate this! For all of the writing lately on how the Hugos should work, there’s scant little out there to help those who are new to this understand how it DOES work.

    • Okay, I looked it up and I THINK I get it now. At least half of voters have to have No Award SOMEWHERE on their ballot in the first two slots if it gets sent to a run-off in a case if No Award takes a big enough chunk of the number 1 slot to keep anyone from being a clear winner?

  2. Pingback: Soylent Green Is Puppies 5/11 | File 770

    • Also it sucked that one of the coolest bloggers I found from last year’s A-Z disappeared immediately after and never posted anything again. :/

      I think it might’ve made a difference if I had actually done more of a focused effort like I’d done last time. Though getting lumped in with the ‘legion of evil’ has gotten me a lot of clicks in the past two days. I just wish that more of those had been on the better post that was linked the first time rather than this throwaway gripey post :/

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