tv // lbd // shoulder touch

Fic Awards A-go-go continued

Venting here instead of on the Awards discussion list because I really don't feel like getting into a war of words when it's not going to make any difference.

Okay, so the continued rationale of having a Meridian-only category is that (a) there's a lot of it and (b) "if a Meridian story were running against another, the first story would win not on merit, but because of the subject".

So following that line of reasoning, I went to look at the results of the last two fic awards, expecting to see a massive slew of Divide & Conquer and/or 100 Days post eps seeing as how those were the most written-about episodes in the ship world. And while there were winning stories that incorporated one or the other (which is only natural) I couldn't find a single winning ship story in either 2001 or 2002 that dealt specifically with either episode.

So it makes me wonder: is the assumption that fic readers - and therefore voters - are so brainless that they will automatically vote for a story based on subject, ie a popular episode? Putting aside the fact that this isn't true in the shipper subjects, why aren't the same allowances made for, say, authors? After all, I bet a lot more people blindly vote according to who wrote a story, rather than what it's about. So I guess Pough and ELG and Jmas, and Sally Reeve and Suz Voy and Pink Rabbit should all be in their own categories, because they're popular writers, and it's not fair to the other writers.
  • Current Mood: frustrated frustrated
why aren't the same allowances made for, say, authors? After all, I bet a lot more people blindly vote according to who wrote a story, rather than what it's about.

Damned right. So what makes you think we haven't taken measures in that area?

Obviously there are things I can't say in a public arena, but if you compare the way we dealt with things in 2002 compared to 2001 you'll see we were very aware of that issue.

Ultimately, though, the team can't control how people vote. And shouldn't want to.
Ultimately, though, the team can't control how people vote. And shouldn't want to.

Morgan, technically, you're already controlling how people vote in setting up the division of categories. From the way you've set it up, it looks like you might as well just have all Danielite voters/authors cordoned off in their own section for "the Daniel Jackson" awards: "Fifty points if you can get it through Jonas' nose!" to quote Moaning Myrtle.
Well, I'm actually quite interested in seeing how much difference the changes make. I mean, if the point of having more Daniel-focused categories is to give other stories more of a chance in the other categories... well, it'll be interesting to see if that pans out. From where I'm sitting there's plenty of Danny fic to still manage to fill everything up, but if that's what's popular *shrugs*...
Considering that most of the winning "character-focused" fic was about Daniel anyway...

And I can just see the Jonas-fic nominations:
1. Jonas angsting over how he killed the good, kind and wonderful Daniel Jackson.
2. Jonas pondering how he'll ever match up to the good-looking, saintly and wise Daniel Jackson.
3. Jonas plotting against the SGC because he's evil (of course!) and planned the demise of the thoughtful, intuitive Daniel Jackson so he could sneak into the SGC and destroy it from within.
4. Jonas begging Daniel's forgiveness by his deathbed...and one scabrous and bleeding hand reaches out to lay a benediction upon him...Daniel's last forgiving act!


Be still, oh my Danielite heart! I think I'm going to cryyyyy...
::reaches for the tissues::

Yes. I'm very sure that giving Daniel his own fixits and places to die and come to life again will stop him from sneaking into the other character's categories to hijack their fic.

NOT.

And if you ask me it has nothing to do with Daniel being a 'most popular' character - it has to do with the inability of nominators to pick a story which is about a character that isn't Daniel.

And even then there's the issue of: "If a story with S/J ship hints in it is put into the Ship category in spite of being largely a gen story, why is it that Daniel-focused stories are permitted into the other characters' story nominations?"

Morgan, I remember you saying there was a lot of comment about whether Doc's stories constitute 'S/J ship' or not. However, I noted no discussion regarding whether a story which is about Daniel saving the day with a little bit of Teal'c thrown in is actually a 'Teal'c' story or a 'Daniel' story. And shouldn't it be more important to get it right with a character-based story than with another genre such as action-adventure, drama, AU...whatever...since those are primarily team-focused and you can subsume the concept of 'team' in 'just Daniel as the hero of the piece' (as the last couple of years of 'gen' winners have shown).

Just a thought.
Morgan, technically, you're already controlling how people vote in setting up the division of categories.

No. We're setting rules about how people nominate. From where I'm standing, there's a big difference, believe me. Once the voting starts, the team does nothing but count.

And I can just see the Jonas-fic nominations:
1. Jonas angsting over how he killed the good, kind and wonderful Daniel Jackson.
2. Jonas pondering how he'll ever match up to the good-looking, saintly and wise Daniel Jackson.
3. Jonas plotting against the SGC because he's evil (of course!) and planned the demise of the thoughtful, intuitive Daniel Jackson so he could sneak into the SGC and destroy it from within.
4. Jonas begging Daniel's forgiveness by his deathbed...and one scabrous and bleeding hand reaches out to lay a benediction upon him...Daniel's last forgiving act!


Okay, let me try to address this. I know we screwed up on a couple of the gen categories last year. I know it. This is a huge undertaking, and we seriously dropped the ball. Trouble is, once the voting starts we can't do anything about it.

This year, one of the things we are going to do is at least skim-read all of the nominations in the gen character-focussed categories. The rules say character-bashing stories aren't allowed. So no JonASS story is going to get into the Best Jonas category.

But we are limited a) by what stories are out there and b) by what is actually nominated. As for your list, above, 2, 3 and 4 are not going to be allowed in that category. 2 and 4 might get moved to the Daniel category. Maybe. 3 would just be rejected - at least in that category. 1 is more of a judgement call, and I can't say more on that subject because I won't be the one making that call.

I remember you saying there was a lot of comment about whether Doc's stories constitute 'S/J ship' or not. However, I noted no discussion regarding whether a story which is about Daniel saving the day with a little bit of Teal'c thrown in is actually a 'Teal'c' story or a 'Daniel' story.

Doc's stories came up because they were nominated in both gen and ship. We had to make a call so it got discussed.

As for the rest, we get nominations for hundreds of stories. We can't possibly read them all. We have to rely memory, on the views of those who have read the stories concerned, and with a story that no one on the team has read, chances are it will slip by us if there's no reason for us to double check the validity of the nomination. And there wasn't in that instance.

This year we have a list of categories we're going to monitor more closely, and that means reading all the stories nominated in those specific categories. But if you count up the number of categories available, I hope you'll realise it's impossible for us to read everything in every category.

It's also easier to break down the categories in ship and slash than it is in gen, and that has made it easier for Daniel-fic to dominate the gen awards in the past. Doing it this way for '03 might not work. It's an experiment for us, and will hopefully make the results of this year's awards more even. If it fails, we'll have to look at it again.

We're doing our best, Sel. I can't promise to do more than that.
Doc's stories came up because they were nominated in both gen and ship. We had to make a call so it got discussed.

See, I also don't see the problem with a story being both gen and ship. Episodes such as D&C, BtS and Entity are all both gen-and-ship depending on how the viewer wishes to take it. (Although most 'ordinary non-fan people' do tend to see the Sam-Jack connection where others "pooh-pooh" it.)

Why is it a problem in fic? If it's a question of "only one category per story" (not genre, category), then why not hand it over to the author to ask them which they would prefer and leave it in their hands. If a story that you see as ship has been nominated in gen, then someone has seen that story as a gen story and has correspondingly nominated it. Short of it being completely unsuitable in the gen genre (which I do not believe Doc's stories are), why could it not be left up to the author to decide its final resting place?

More ponderings.
Nah, episodes are just episodes. They don't need fannish labels.

Fic is different, because whether we like it or not we're dealing with a divided fandom. We have to deal with the labels the fans have invented.

why could it not be left up to the author to decide its final resting place?

It is. We contact every author nominated with queries like that. If the author doesn't get back to us, or prefers not to make choices like that, the team has to make the call. But I can't comment on the specifics of what happened with Doc's stories last year.
Re: Doc's fic
(Anonymous)
If it's a question of "only one category per story" (not genre, category), then why not hand it over to the author to ask them which they would prefer and leave it in their hands.

Unless my memory is completely faulty, that's exactly what we did in the 2001 awards. Can't recall whether we did that lastyear, though, because naturally enough, not everyone got back to us regarding their nominations. If authors aren't willing to talk to us (and believe me, not everyone is as accomodating as yourselves with regards to their nominations), it does leave us with no choice but to make the call.

Mel