Profgeek/John Purcell (profgeek) wrote,
Profgeek/John Purcell

Hugo result musings

Well, no real surprises here, except for maybe Pan's Labyrinth winning the Long Form Hugo.  That was my pick, and usually I never pick the winner in any category! I am very happy for all the winners, but the voting results revealed some rather persnickity numbers. First off, Dave Langford's one-vote win over John Scalzi is a travesty for the main reason that Scalzi should not have been on the final ballot at all. Technically, neither should Dave; both men have sold fiction professionally, and that right there should have disqualified both men from even making the final ballot. And the one vote difference makes me wonder if Scalzi is going to call for a recount; no one who ever campaigned so hard for anything would roll over and take that kind of a result without a fight. If he does complain and ask for a recount, that would do nothing short of demeaning the Fan Hugos even more. I certainly hope he doesn't. The Fan Hugos - and the entire Hugo awards, in general - have some serious problems to overcome.

In the Fan Artist category, I am happy that Frank Wu won. He is a talented artist - heck, all the nominees in this category are - and I know that some people are saying Frank should not be on the final ballot for the same reason I made for the Fan Writer category: he has made money as a professional artist. I happen to agree with this sentiment. It does not mean that I don't like Frank, Dave, or John, it is simply a matter of principle and what these awards are named: FAN Hugos. This means that the work nominees produced in the past year in the AMATEUR end of the science fiction field - meaning: not earning money at it, but just producing work for the love of it - should be the only ones eligible for nomination. End of discussion.

Additionally, why was Teddy Harvia's name on the final ballot for the Fan Artist Hugo? To the best of my knowledge, he has not produced or published in fanzines any new fan art in the last four years. Yet there his name was again on the final ballot. Because of these examples, it is my opinion that it is high time to get some quality control put in place to monitor who makes the final ballot and who does not. This is why I really have no inclination to bother voting for the Hugo awards even if I did have a supporting WorldCon membership. 

And then the voters went off and did something completely unexpected: Science Fiction Five-Yearly received the Best Fanzine Award. Okay, that restored some of my faith in the voters. That really was a wonderful fanzine, and even if it garnered sympathy votes in remembrance of the late Lee Hoffman, I still think this was a well-deserving recipient. Congratulations to Geri, Randy and LeeH. You folks deserve that honor for the labor of love that SF5Y was. Good show.

But the Best Fan Writer Hugo results still gall me, and some people who were nominated in other categories should not have been on the final ballot. The Powers That Be really must try to install some kind of quality control on the nominating process. What, I don't know, but I just had to get this off my chest.
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