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posted by LaminatorX on Monday April 13 2015, @11:30AM   Printer-friendly
from the Livejournal-still-works dept.

From the The Guardian.

Introducing the Sad Puppies...

"The shortlists for the long-running American genre awards, won in the past by names from Kurt Vonnegut to Ursula K Le Guin and voted for by fans, were announced this weekend to uproar in the science fiction community, after it emerged that the line-up corresponded closely with the slates of titles backed by certain conservative writers. The self-styled "Sad Puppies" campaigners had set out to combat what orchestrator and writer Brad Torgersen had criticised as the Hugos' tendency to reward "literary" and "ideological" works.

Today's Hugos, Torgersen has blogged, "have lost cachet, because at the same time SF/F has exploded popularly – with larger-than-life, exciting, entertaining franchises and products – the voting body of 'fandom' have tended to go in the opposite direction: niche, academic, overtly to the Left in ideology and flavor, and ultimately lacking what might best be called visceral, gut-level, swashbuckling fun".

Twenty years ago, he writes, "if you saw a lovely spaceship on a book cover, with a gorgeous planet in the background, you could be pretty sure you were going to get a rousing space adventure featuring starships and distant, amazing worlds". Nowadays, he claims, the same jacket is likely to be a story "merely about racial prejudice and exploitation, with interplanetary or interstellar trappings".

And here we have the Rabid Puppies definitely not mentioning GamerGate:

Another group of allied rightwing campaigners, dubbing themselves the Rabid Puppies and led by Vox Day, real name Theodore Beale, have also added their voices to the block-voting campaign against what Day called "the left-wing control freaks who have subjected science fiction to ideological control for two decades and are now attempting to do the same thing in the game industry".

And finally a bit of Martin:

"Call it block voting. Call it ballot stuffing. Call it gaming the system. There's truth to all of those characterisations. You can't call it cheating, though. It was all within the rules. But many things can be legal, and still bad ... and this is one of those, from where I sit. I think the Sad Puppies have broken the Hugo awards, and I am not sure they can ever be repaired," he wrote.

"If the Sad Puppies wanted to start their own award ... for Best Conservative SF, or Best Space Opera, or Best Military SF, or Best Old-Fashioned SF the Way It Used to Be ... whatever it is they are actually looking for ... hey, I don't think anyone would have any objections to that. I certainly wouldn't. More power to them," he added. "But that's not what they are doing here, it seems to me. Instead they seem to want to take the Hugos and turn them into their own awards."

 
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  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by jmorris on Monday April 13 2015, @05:29PM

    by jmorris (4844) on Monday April 13 2015, @05:29PM (#169850)

    I'm still trying to figure out how a minority secured a majority of the votes in the nominations.

    But some people are unpeople. The actual paying customers in this example. Only the 'right' people should be voting you see. The self appointed vanguard who see it as their job to lead the rabble to what they should be reading instead of the lowbrow crap they actually do read. They believe that the Hugos should be prescriptive instead of descriptive. If you sell a lot of books there is no reason to heap honors upon you, the vulgar forces of the market are your reward; no, major award are to be given to promote rightthinking works that nobody has read so that the past glory of the award (remembered from when it did indeed honor excellence) can move books. I.e. to redistribute honor, attention as well as mere revenue.

    My opinion is the process was taken over by a bunch of sanctimonious hippies more too in love with the smell of their own farts. Typical entryism, they completely remade the Hugo into something entirely different from what it was and are now screeching like harpies when the fans got tired of it and told em to sod off. Of course at this point it will more likely just kill off the award instead of save it because they waited a generation too long. Liberty requires constant vigilance, they weren't.

    Just to really flame the fires higher, Martin's attitude above is entirely representative of the attitude, People move in, take over an existing institution because it is easier than establishing a new one from scratch and thenn when the original population objects they arrogantly just tell them to go make their own if they aren't happy. Kinda like RedHat and Pottering are doing with GNU/Linux.

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  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by naubol on Monday April 13 2015, @05:48PM

    by naubol (1918) on Monday April 13 2015, @05:48PM (#169869)

    Considering it only costs $40 dollars to participate and anyone who is interested can, I fail to see how this class argument applies. Your opinion is so toxic and polemic that I am struggling to find the best argument buried in your post, but lets go with the idea that you believ e it has been captured by a group with narrowly tailored interests (the hippies). Mind you, it is hilarious that you are calling them hippies, what a sound, reasonable, and credible person you are!

    That group, the 'hippies', spectacularly failed to keep the system captured because their (ironic)narrowly-tailored interests(/ironic) failed to converge on a small enough pool of candidates to beat a much more organized minority, the puppies, who swept all nominations in every category by specifying exactly 5 people to nominate in each category.

    The puppies, who absolutely have a narrowly-tailored interest, managed to capture the system perfectly. There is no proof that the group of participators at large are kept purposefully to some oligarchic set by 'the hippies'. So, this charge is, ironically, true of the puppies who are leveling it unfairly at the majority. The irony is made more palpable because if the puppies were correct in this charge, they wouldn't have been able to hijack the nomination process, which made the charge true of them!

    Your band wagon argument that 'the hippies' are screeching against the will of the population seems to fold like so much poppycock when you consider that the puppies ballot-stuffed a small selection of authors approved only by them, a minority in size relative to the general fan population. In other words, it wasn't the fans in general voting, but an extremist group. Vulnerabilities in the nomination process have underlined how susceptible the process is to minority capture.

    • (Score: 4, Insightful) by Vanderhoth on Monday April 13 2015, @06:07PM

      by Vanderhoth (61) on Monday April 13 2015, @06:07PM (#169886)

      Your opinion is so toxic and polemic

      Are you serious? Is this a parody account? am I still on twitter and just haven't realized it?

      I'd like to know at what point in the last five to ten years opinions became "toxic" and "polemic" because I honestly don't remember this type of language being the norm up to about a year ago.

      I'm living in topsy tervy world. Had I read that a year ago I would have dismissed it as a conservative claiming freeze peach should only apply to them and libtards need to STFU, except now I'm reading it from "progressives" that are trying their damnedest to shut down all discussion they don't agree with. Why don't you just tell us we're a rapists and get it over with, might as well not mince words, just go for the nuclear option.

      And seriously don't think people here don't realize you're also one of maybe three different AC accounts running through this comment section mocking everyone that doesn't think sad puppies is the largest toxic environmental disaster to occur in the history of SF.

      --
      "Now we know", "And knowing is half the battle". -G.I. Joooooe
      • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 13 2015, @10:38PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 13 2015, @10:38PM (#170043)

        I strongly recommend you read Martin's posts in full (he wrote a series of about 8 blog posts on the issue), particularly the one titled "Hatespeech [livejournal.com]" and his (very civil) reply to Larry Correia [livejournal.com]. Martin explicitly distances himself from the "SJW" crowd while explaining why that type of discourse is unhelpful, including references to it being used by people with "social justice" politics, not just conservatives.

    • (Score: 1) by khallow on Tuesday April 14 2015, @01:12AM

      by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday April 14 2015, @01:12AM (#170133) Journal

      Your opinion is so toxic and polemic that I am struggling to find the best argument buried in your post

      You'll need a much better liver, if you plan on reading the internet. The previous poster's comment was quite innocuous.

      Your band wagon argument that 'the hippies' are screeching against the will of the population seems to fold like so much poppycock when you consider that the puppies ballot-stuffed a small selection of authors approved only by them, a minority in size relative to the general fan population.

      Given how easy it was to do, I count that as evidence supporting the claim that ballot stacking has happened before.

      • (Score: 2) by Reziac on Tuesday April 14 2015, @02:06AM

        by Reziac (2489) on Tuesday April 14 2015, @02:06AM (#170155) Homepage

        Larry Correia, who was an auditor/accountant in his first life, has twice said he believes the Hugo's internal vote-counting process is NOT tainted. Which of course says nothing of whether any group has previously gamed the awards (certainly some have done serious campaigning, notably Scalzi).

        • (Score: 1) by khallow on Tuesday April 14 2015, @07:48AM

          by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday April 14 2015, @07:48AM (#170264) Journal

          Larry Correia, who was an auditor/accountant in his first life, has twice said he believes the Hugo's internal vote-counting process is NOT tainted.

          An observation which is completely irrelevant. I'm sure, if you put him to the question, he'd have to admit that probably not a lot of babies were eaten in the process of voting for a Hugo either.

          Tainting the internal vote-counting process is a rather extreme and possibly illegal (due to the potential for being considered fraud) way to game the system. Why speak of that instead of speaking about the obvious, demonstrated example of getting a bunch of your friends on board and voting as a bloc? Sad Puppies showed that latter approach is quite effective and easy to implement. That implies that they might not be the first to do so, just the first to publicly demonstrate that it can be done.

          • (Score: 2) by Reziac on Tuesday April 14 2015, @03:04PM

            by Reziac (2489) on Tuesday April 14 2015, @03:04PM (#170415) Homepage

            Well, he said this because he was accused of believing that the Hugo administrators had screwed with the previous votes, and he was pointing out that wasn't what he'd said at all; rather, as you say, that previously various people had done exactly what he did, they just weren't so public about it.

      • (Score: 2) by naubol on Tuesday April 14 2015, @04:08PM

        by naubol (1918) on Tuesday April 14 2015, @04:08PM (#170432)

        I'm calling for better rhetoric, not complaining that I can't handle it. I'm not fatalistic about internet debate.

        It would be easy for me to kill someone else -> I have killed someone else? Means is not sufficient to convict in court. This is a false implication.

        Moreover, GRRM and others agree that campaigning for Hugo's has occurred, but drew the distinction that this is an order of magnitude difference. While campaigning might negatively tarnish the reputation of the award on some varying degree, as it has for the Oscars, going from partial influence to full dominance drops the awards value to essentially nil outside of the sub-community who is dominating.

  • (Score: 4, Insightful) by Vanderhoth on Monday April 13 2015, @05:55PM

    by Vanderhoth (61) on Monday April 13 2015, @05:55PM (#169873)

    Yes, LOL, totally get where you're coming from.

    It's not like I haven't repeatedly seen this attitude over the last eight months.

    Gamergate has no place in fandom. Not in videogames, not in comics, and not in sci-fi.

    This is our culture, not yours. Get the hell out.

    https://archive.today/kHfrS [archive.today]

    I've only been a gamer since, BEFORE, I could copy them out of computer magz on to my Atari 130XE, but yeah I should totally just give up gaming and while I'm at it all the other nerdy hobbies like comics and SF and maybe programming too, so a bunch of nobodies that get triggered by a limerick, mocking a man who runs off a cliff for sleeping with another man by accident, as transphobic can take over and make things "more diverse" while tweeting #KillAllMen

    Here lies Firedorn, a hero in bed.
    He once was alive, but now he’s dead.
    The last woman he bedded, turned out a man
    And crying in shame, off a cliff he ran.”

    Read more at http://blogjob.com/oneangrygamer/2015/04/pillars-of-eternity-limerick-was-changed-by-backer-not-obsidian/#zjdrsAvqfSYoVgeT.99 [blogjob.com]

    --
    "Now we know", "And knowing is half the battle". -G.I. Joooooe
  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 13 2015, @09:35PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 13 2015, @09:35PM (#170010)

    Is Soylentnews based on the same principle slashdot bad, make new and better voila! Soylentnews

    • (Score: 2) by jmorris on Monday April 13 2015, @10:57PM

      by jmorris (4844) on Monday April 13 2015, @10:57PM (#170061)

      Pretty much. Slashdot was once good, went bad, corporate overlord made correction impossible so a fork happened. But it was the same principle, those who didn't like the changes in an existing institution were the ones forced to rebuild from scratch.

      These problems will persist until communities evolve methods to more effectively resist entryism and single points of control/failure. The Hugos are fighting entryism, the Slashdot and GNU/Linux communities are fighting the single point of control where Dice/RedHat ended up in a position to redefine the community.