Drunk Duck Awards

2010 DD Award FINALISTS!!!
usedbooks at 6:06PM, July 26, 2010
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Well, the purpose and design is, of course, whatever we want it to be. And that is different for different people.

This discussion clearly shows there are people who want to keep a fair amount of “popular vote” aspect to the awards as well as those who like the panel critiquing process.

I'm gonna keep pushing my suggestions of doing it both ways. Having the nominees get judged by a panel and also listing them for a round of voting, so we can have a judges' pick and a readers' pick for each category. (Of course, the “top 10” kinds of comics will overwhelm the readers' picks, but they are popular for a reason.)

~~~

Oh, and I agree that you shouldn't abort discussion or think an idea was “bad” because it was shot down. 90% of ideas I come up with are shot down. Those ideas help lead to discussions and to new ideas, and they also let people know where you and others are coming from. There are a lot of different approaches to webcomic awards, and there will never be complete agreement, but if one group remains silent, we won't know they exist. Like if EEN and JNP didn't speak up, one would assume from this thread that everyone wanted to do away with the popular vote aspect. Now that we know it isn't the case, we should keep that in consideration.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:38PM
Aelwyn at 7:47PM, July 26, 2010
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usedbooks
Oh, and I agree that you shouldn't abort discussion or think an idea was “bad” because it was shot down. 90% of ideas I come up with are shot down. Those ideas help lead to discussions and to new ideas, and they also let people know where you and others are coming from.

I am not aborting discussion because my suggestion was shot down. It had already been done so by a few, and supported by others. To clarify; I am aborting for being shot down in what came off to me, personally, as a belittling manner. It didn't seem to me that the purpose of Nick's post was to help further the discussion in a positive light. My intent was not to create a hostile grounds.
last edited on July 14, 2011 10:46AM
Nicotine at 8:03PM, July 26, 2010
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Loud_G
JNP: You could post the comments after the judging, just make them all anonymous.

That's what I was thinking. It would be unfair to let only a select number of people see them.

Aelwyn
usedbooks
Oh, and I agree that you shouldn't abort discussion or think an idea was “bad” because it was shot down. 90% of ideas I come up with are shot down. Those ideas help lead to discussions and to new ideas, and they also let people know where you and others are coming from.

I am not aborting discussion because my suggestion was shot down. It had already been done so by a few, and supported by others. To clarify; I am aborting for being shot down in what came off to me, personally, as a belittling manner. It didn't seem to me that the purpose of Nick's post was to help further the discussion in a positive light. My intent was not to create a hostile grounds.

I agree. Everyone's opinion is important, I think, but when it's presented in such a condescending manner I don't think it's worth discussing :/ Some of those statements could have been said in a more respectful way.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:16PM
usedbooks at 8:04PM, July 26, 2010
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Aelwyn
I am not aborting discussion because my suggestion was shot down. It had already been done so by a few, and supported by others. To clarify; I am aborting for being shot down in what came off to me, personally, as a belittling manner. It didn't seem to me that the purpose of Nick's post was to help further the discussion in a positive light. My intent was not to create a hostile grounds.
Yeah, I know how that is, you just start to feel like the mood is unpleasant. I don't think EEN meant to be belittling. I've noticed that he tends to make his opinions known in very detailed and elaborate ways, and that can be intimidating when it seems to be directed at (or against) you. It's like being attacked by an army of text.

I hope we can continue discussion and brainstorming while considering how other people view (and want) the awards run. We haven't had award debate that got this intense in years, and debate makes me uncomfortable (I don't go near the debate forum!). So… I prefer to call it a brainstorming session. Much more pleasant.

That, and no one has to “win.” I plan on saving all ideas presented somewhere so we can bring them up in spring and not forget anything. Even if we end up settling on a general way to do something, we might want to revisit these other options when award season starts to come around again. Plus, they depend on how active people are willing to be and what resources we have available to us. (If JNP elopes in the Bahamas, replaces his server with photos of cats, and burns his computer, we might not be able to make use of that forum, for example.)
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:38PM
Evil Emperor Nick at 8:06PM, July 26, 2010
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houseofmuses
Nick, really. What was that all about?

The democratic response.

Aelwyn
@Evil Emperor Nick

1. Hello, nice to meet you as well.

2. You seem to think I thought twenty people were a huge slice of the population here on DD, when I'm fairly sure I said it is a 'Portion' of the community. And when a ‘portion’ of the community wants to see conversation take place because there is room for improvement, I don't think it should simply be discredited because it is only, as you said, 0.0002% of the people that click around the site.

3. I don't think you really read my suggestion at all, because I never, ever suggested “taking the system completely out of the reader's hands.” I simply suggested finding a way to make the awards more accessible to the comics who don't have enough fans to outnumber some of the giants that have been here for years.

4. I'm not really going to touch on your last points; because you seem to think I am upset that my, or comics that I read did not get nominated - when that has nothing to do with it at all. I also find it a bit offensive that you think how well someone advertise decides how good they are at what they do. There are some fantastic creators out there that don't know the first thing about advertising.

But thank you, anyways, for calling my one suggestion (In an attempt to be helpful) a delusion. I suppose for now on I should just keep my mouth shut.

1. Thank you.

2. Aelwyn there is a difference between our literal words and the implication of our words. Your implication seemed to suggest that this was a strong portion and I don't think there was any other interpretation to how you phrased your words. I don't think anyone should be discredited but I do believe in putting things in perspective.

3. I read your posts very carefully twice, I simply disagree with them.

4. Aelwyn I assure you in no way do I assume that this is about your comic, however I believe that you think people who have been loyal to drunk duck and worked extremely hard should be penalized for their success and loyalty. I find it extremely offensive that you think people who worked hard for years to get where they are should be penalized for being successful at what they do. I appreciate you want to help unknown talent but the very reason most awards have categories like “best new comers” is because that is the spot for new talent to get recognized but it is not the focus, nor should it be, of an awards show. If you want to start a DD talent search or DD Idol I'm sure people would love that! That would be the perfect venue for honoring new comics who you feel are not getting the attention they merit. In fact I'd be happy to help you get it started.

Doing a successful web comics means being more than an artist, more than a writer, more than a comedian, it means doing every part of making a successful web comic. One of those things is getting known. There are plenty of people who don't know panel setup, dialog, pacing or any number of other factors that go into a web comic. Advertising is just one more area and you are not doing people favors by pretending that isn't a factor, it is! There are no web comic agents out there to do it for you and you have to do it yourself. We are honoring best site layout after all, so we clearly agree there is more to a good comic then just drawing each page. Axe Cop sure as heck didn't get to be an internet sensation by ignoring the promotional aspects of its comic.

I didn't call your suggestion a delusion, I did however assert reasoning behind it as one based from inexperience and making some fallacious assumptions and admitted to having started there myself. If you don't think my response was to further the discussion in a positive light it is only because I don't think yours was in a positive light to begin with and personally offended me as I felt it was highly insulting to people like myself who have worked hard to get somewhere on DD. I've seen a lot of good comic move off DD over the years exactly because of this sort of entitlement attitude and treating the top 10 as if they were somehow stealing from everyone else just for being there and I've developed a rather thin skin on the subject. No one on DD is Penny Arcade this “us small guys” vs the “giants” on the top 10 is what is creating a hostile environment.

Edit:

usedbooks
Yeah, I know how that is, you just start to feel like the mood is unpleasant. I don't think EEN meant to be belittling. I've noticed that he tends to make his opinions known in very detailed and elaborate ways, and that can be intimidating when it seems to be directed at (or against) you. It's like being attacked by an army of text.

I hope we can continue discussion and brainstorming while considering how other people view (and want) the awards run. We haven't had award debate that got this intense in years, and debate makes me uncomfortable (I don't go near the debate forum!). So… I prefer to call it a brainstorming session. Much more pleasant.

Sorry UB. I apreciate what you said but in this case, while I didn't mean to be belitting, I do admit to being hostile and what I said likely came off less diplomatic then I would have like. I suppose of should have slept on it and tried posting again when I was rested and cooled off but I didn't and here we are.

last edited on July 14, 2011 12:23PM
Nicotine at 8:29PM, July 26, 2010
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Evil Emperor Nick
4. Aelwyn I assure you in no way do I assume that this is about your comic, however I believe that you think people who have been loyal to drunk duck and worked extremely hard should be penalized for their success and loyalty. I find it extremely offensive that you think people who worked hard for years to get where they are should be penalized for being successful at what they do. I appreciate you want to help unknown talent but the very reason most awards have categories like “best new comers” is because that is the spot for new talent to get recognized but it is not the focus, nor should it be, of an awards show. If you want to start a DD talent search or DD Idol I'm sure people would love that! That would be the perfect venue for honoring new comics who you feel are not getting the attention they merit. In fact I'd be happy to help you get it started.


I know you apologized for being hostile, but I don't understand a portion of this point. Penalized, seriously? She spoke about putting a cap on the number of categories one can be in (I understand you how you'd disagree with that) but she never said it maliciously or talked about punishing people for being popular. She never even mentioned top 10 comics specifically :/

And there were other people who made similar comments, so I wonder why Aelywn was the target of your comments. >_>

And I don't think being here longer, having greater talent, or having a better known comic makes someone's opinion more valid than the next person's.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:16PM
houseofmuses at 9:13PM, July 26, 2010
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Nick, that's enough. You're taking this discussion way off topic, and I stand firmly beside Nicotine:

Nicotine
I know you apologized for being hostile, but I don't understand a portion of this point. Penalized, seriously? She spoke about putting a cap on the number of categories one can be in (I understand you how you'd disagree with that) but she never said it maliciously or talked about punishing people for being popular. She never even mentioned top 10 comics specifically :/

And there were other people who made similar comments, so I wonder why Aelywn was the target of your comments. >_>

And I don't think being here longer, having greater talent, or having a better known comic makes someone's opinion more valid than the next person's.

Yes, you ARE being condescending. You can smack someone with a bat and turn around to smile and apologize about it all you like, but you really are picking on Aelwyn in obvious fashion. I don't know what seething resentment you are sitting on (well, actually I do), but you're really not winning any admirers here.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:50PM
usedbooks at 9:19PM, July 26, 2010
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I'm glad to hear from people in the top ten here. :) I am sorry that you have taken this so personally, but it is definitely understandable why. I would like to hear any specific suggestions you might have on improving current award procedures or anything that should be added (or overhauled). Mostly, I just see you defending yourselves. Again, that's understandable, but it can become a raw nerve emotional war easily, and we are trying to be productive.

From what I gather from the various viewpoints presented, I do believe a general consensus holds that the awards should both include aspects of popularity and of the sort of critiqued judging. Readers want to see their favorites acknowledged and represented; of course they do! But the less known talent also deserves accolades. The question has always come up as to which we should focus on or if we should do both – and how.

~~~~~~~

So, an assessment…

The problem with a popular vote is that basically, you end up with a top ten kind of list. They certainly deserve their spots and other praise too, they work hard for it, but it kinda becomes predictable since we have a site that has a list of top ten. I know that I felt it was a waste of time to cast a vote in those kinds of awards because the comics I loved didn't have enough advertising or readers. It also creates a competitive environment, people really going all out to garner votes, and those good at self-promotion will win. That's good in its way, bringing a lot of energy to the event.

As for judging panels, the problem is the flip side, you downplay the readers. Awards are for readers to support their favorite comics. It sucks if those choices are not acknowledged. And if you were to discount readers entirely, who would care about the awards? It would just be like a review site without the reviews. Only comic creators with their comics in the running would care or know. There would be no excitement for readers and no competition.

~~~~~~~

Of course, these are things we thought about once upon a time. I am only recapping. The current system was derived from a compromise, and yet it also makes both the pro-popular vote people upset and the pro-judge-panel people upset. I'm not sure there's a way around that. In our current system:

~Nominations are open to all DD members to choose their favorite comics.
~A group of (or this year, one) volunteers tally the votes to catch any creative spellings and to remove any nonsense nominees that don't fit the category.
~The top 4 or 5 per category (based on number of votes) are selected as finalists.
~The finalists are announces with links, so all can view and congratulate them.
~Three judges convene and discuss at length which of those finalists is the winner. (The number of judges was based on the number of volunteers we had available at the time, btw.)
~Winners are announced. All celebrate!

We added a “reader's choice” last year to acknowledge the comic with the most votes. But it was a last minute addition, and may not have been played up enough, imo.

Theoretically, this process acknowledges both popularity and talent. All the popular comics get a nod as finalists, and the most talented among the reasonably known comics gets “the big win.”

~~~~~~~

Problems with the current system:

~Comics popular and widely nominated sometimes receive no awards. That's really upsetting to their readers and not so great for the hard-working creators either.
~“Popular” comics displace fairly well-voted and possibly more “deserving” comics in the finals leading to some upset creators.

So, can we alter our current process to compensate? Can we come up with a system that better acknowledges talent and popularity, readers and creators?

~~~~~~~

We have had suggestions to…

1. Limit the number of categories a comic can be nominated for.
2. Have judges pick from all nominees rather than top ones.
3. Have more finalists.
4. Not let comics be finalists in a category they won the year before.
5. Have the creators submit their comics for nominations rather than having it all be up to the readers.
6. Judges' veto

Well, all of these suggestions address more of the second issue than the first one. No wonder popular comic creators and their readers are upset! I'll address that in a second. I want to weigh in a personal opinion of these first.

I wouldn't personally like #1 or #4. I think they are too limiting and not fair to the comics that deserve nominations and awards. #1: Some comics excel in a spectrum of things, and deserve those nominations. #4: Because the judging is based on the past year's work and only active or recently (in the last year) completed comics are allowed, there is no reason to blackball a comic. The judging is on “new” stuff.

#2 and #5 cut the readers out of the equation too much for me. For #5, I think readers should select what they believe their favorite comics deserve. #2 would be a logistical nightmare. Those lists are HUGE! (I believe blntmaker suggested that people present campaign posters to the project prior to voting opening. I think that's a fun idea! But the comics advertising should not be limited to the categories in which they suggest readers vote, imo.)

#3 was kinda my idea, so I like it. Heh. The problem is that it does reduce reader influence a little. But I would suggest increasing finalists only in hotly contended categories. Or instead of having a set number of finalist slots, to take all the comics that receive at least a certain number of votes. So, it would be a popular vote but it would not let comics displace each other.

#6 was proposed to correct this year's issues. The biggest problem with this is that there could be an upset of a comic winning that wasn't even announced as a finalist. That would upset the finalists for sure! Plus, it would mean that a comic might go to judging that no one knows about, and it wouldn't get the benefit of being announced as a finalist (being a finalist does get you acknowledgment, traffic, and a nod on the presentation pages).

~~~~~~~

Now I've discussed my thoughts on that. We do need to address the overshadowing of the popular comics and the discouraging affects on the readers. We haven't really had any (mostly because the people brainstorming here are not considering that issue), but I have a couple ideas.

1. We need to have a presentation for a the reader's choice THIS YEAR. We can do that. Since no one knows it but JNP and me, one of us will do that. I think it's a significant award and not to be tucked on the last page in the author notes.

2. Next year, we could take a few categories for another round of voting and present both a readers' and a judges' award. In addition to sending the finalists to panels for judging, I suggest we list the finalists in a poll and have DD members pick from only those to get a popular winner.

I wouldn't suggest we do that for every genre because you will have comics that “barely fit” the genre winning, and some are pretty obscure. We *could* but we would see the same titles winning a half dozen times and it would be work to set up. Still, it is an option.

3. ANOTHER idea that occurred to me is that a couple categories would work better as popular votes and we might just replace them with popular votes. I know the judges found it nearly impossible to compare them. These categories are

“Best Overall Story” and “Best Overall Strip”
(Possibly “Best Completed Comic” )

Honestly, how can you compare those? They are so diverse! They are also pretty significant. My idea would not be to just take the straight nomination votes but rather get finalists as usual and have a poll, so those comics get the benefit of promoting themselves during the voting phase. – Alternately we could add a couple “popular” categories to select that way.

~~~~~~~

Okay, I've said enough for now. I hope we can come up with a good compromise so everyone can get something rewarding from the awards, whatever their DD experiences and favorites.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:38PM
Nicotine at 9:47PM, July 26, 2010
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usedbooks
I'm glad to hear from people in the top ten here. :) I am sorry that you have taken this so personally, but it is definitely understandable why. I would like to hear any specific suggestions you might have on improving current award procedures or anything that should be added (or overhauled). Mostly, I just see you defending yourselves. Again, that's understandable, but it can become a raw nerve emotional war easily, and we are trying to be productive.

I'm glad to see others' opinions, too. But I'm failing to understand why top 10 comics feel targetted or where (on this thread) they were specifically attacked. :/ But anyways…


usedbooks
Problems with the current system:

~Comics popular and widely nominated sometimes receive no awards. That's really upsetting to their readers and not so great for the hard-working creators either.
~“Popular” comics displace fairly well-voted and possibly more “deserving” comics in the finals leading to some upset creators.


I personally don't see this as the problem. If a comic doesn't win, it's simply because the judges favored another one over that one. Like I said a few posts before, a lot of work goes into judging (and people who question this should sign up to judge this year). It takes awhile to come up with a winner, and everyone has to have a valid, rational reason for their decision. (I don't mean this as an attack but,) popular comics have a greater chance at winning something, so if they haven't been winning a lot I don't understand why the system should be changed as to not disappoint their readers. It just means that there is always at least 1 or 2 underdogs in each category which are get more praise from the judges.

My problem with popularity and these awards is not because popular comics get into a lot of categories, it's the fact that they end up being nominated for things they don't fit into at all/very well.

usedbooks
We have had suggestions to…

1. Limit the number of categories a comic can be nominated for.
2. Have judges pick from all nominees rather than top ones.
3. Have more finalists.
4. Not let comics be finalists in a category they won the year before.
5. Have the creators submit their comics for nominations rather than having it all be up to the readers.
6. Judges' veto

I think out of all of these, I like 3. It'll give more people a chance. Maybe 4-8 finalists and 2 1/2 more weeks for judging. Yeah, it'll take longer, but maybe better results. 2 screams bias to me, lol; 4 is flat out unfair, 5 is no fun, and 6 seems bias also. I wouldn't take one for reasons I mentioned before.

usedbooks
1. We need to have a presentation for a the reader's choice THIS YEAR. We can do that. Since no one knows it but JNP and me, one of us will do that. I think it's a significant award and not to be tucked on the last page in the author notes.

2. Next year, we could take a few categories for another round of voting and present both a readers' and a judges' award. In addition to sending the finalists to panels for judging, I suggest we list the finalists in a poll and have DD members pick from only those to get a popular winner.

I wouldn't suggest we do that for every genre because you will have comics that “barely fit” the genre winning, and some are pretty obscure. We *could* but we would see the same titles winning a half dozen times and it would be work to set up. Still, it is an option.

3. ANOTHER idea that occurred to me is that a couple categories would work better as popular votes and we might just replace them with popular votes. I know the judges found it nearly impossible to compare them. These categories are

“Best Overall Story” and “Best Overall Strip”
(Possibly “Best Completed Comic” )

I think 1 and 2 are brilliant, especially 2, that's a clever compromise. 3…I can see how that can turn into ballot-stuffing if it's not monitered properly :/
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:16PM
houseofmuses at 9:48PM, July 26, 2010
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Usedbooks, you're the very soul of a peacemaker. And you're absolutely right.

But, with all due respect, #4 wouldn't work, either. Not allowing anyone to be nominated who has won in a category the previous year hamstrings competition. When I was first nominated in 2008 there were not as many Poser comics. This year there are more.
I still to this day have NEVER WON in my category, but what the heck, right?


last edited on July 14, 2011 12:50PM
Nicotine at 9:53PM, July 26, 2010
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houseofmuses
Usedbooks, you're the very soul of a peacemaker. And you're absolutely right.

Nicotine, with all due respect, #4 wouldn't work, either. Not allowing anyone to be nominated who has won in a category the previous year hamstrings competition. When I was first nominated in 2008 there were not as many Poser comics. This year there are more.
I still to this day have NEVER WON in my category, but what the heck, right?



Eh?

I said #4 was unfair XDD
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:16PM
houseofmuses at 9:58PM, July 26, 2010
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Yeah, I know, I was editing it even as you were quoting it. :) It's late at my end.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:50PM
Aelwyn at 10:01PM, July 26, 2010
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Evil Emperor Nick
So when I say you have some nice delusions about the DD awards and awards in general I'm not saying that to be snarky or be sarcastic but because I have some experience that you lack and at one point I shared some of your same misconceptions, which that experience has taught me better.

I'm pretty sure that reads as you calling my suggestion a delusion, considering it was the only suggestion I made, but I could be wrong.

I'm also sorry if I offended you; but I was pretty clear in saying the top comics deserved the nominations they got - never at one point did I say they were unworthy or undeserving. I at no point said they didn't work hard to get where they are. I said they were fortunate; and that in no way means they didn't work for their fortune.

I asked for a discussion to take place about the process to find a solution to a matter that was troubling to a few. I think you could have been a little more civil than to respond with what was really a verbal slap to the face. Perhaps you may at this point think that it wasn't - but it came off that way.

I understand your angle about marketing. I work in marketing myself and am very profitable at it - but never would I think that factors into how talented one is. It does not make anyone's ability to create beautiful works more or less powerful.

Anyhow, I have little else to add in response; I'm honestly not interested in continuing this train wreck of a conversation any further than we already have.
last edited on July 14, 2011 10:46AM
Evil Emperor Nick at 11:12PM, July 26, 2010
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Aelwyn
Evil Emperor Nick
So when I say you have some nice delusions about the DD awards and awards in general I'm not saying that to be snarky or be sarcastic but because I have some experience that you lack and at one point I shared some of your same misconceptions, which that experience has taught me better.

I'm pretty sure that reads as you calling my suggestion a delusion, considering it was the only suggestion I made, but I could be wrong.

I'm also sorry if I offended you; but I was pretty clear in saying the top comics deserved the nominations they got - never at one point did I say they were unworthy or undeserving. I at no point said they didn't work hard to get where they are. I said they were fortunate; and that in no way means they didn't work for their fortune.

I asked for a discussion to take place about the process to find a solution to a matter that was troubling to a few. I think you could have been a little more civil than to respond with what was really a verbal slap to the face. Perhaps you may at this point think that it wasn't - but it came off that way.

I understand your angle about marketing. I work in marketing myself and am very profitable at it - but never would I think that factors into how talented one is. It does not make anyone's ability to create beautiful works more or less powerful.

Anyhow, I have little else to add in response; I'm honestly not interested in continuing this train wreck of a conversation any further than we already have.

I'm saying we all start off with some naive ideas myself included ‘cause at one point I had the same idea and it didn’t work over very well. It is very, very hard to get people to read even 5 comics, 3 is honestly more realistic, so we're already stretching unrewarded volunteer’s thin. Thusly you need to nominations to narrow down the field as much as possible. It is less work for everyone involved, these awards are not actually very easy to do and can be very unrewarding at times (as I'm sure some people are feeling in this thread right now) since you can't please everyone, so increasing the work load should be a last option.

I'll just add that perhaps next time you step forward saying you've got all sort of support it makes it sound like you are making yourself the voice of the people and the person to talk to. When you keep talking about the under dog not the fortunate few you are making very clear allusions even if you choose not to mention something by name perhaps I read to much into that given the tone of other parts of the thread. So once more I'm sorry and I hope we can move on.

Making a beautiful piece of work though isn't what these awards are about, they're about web comics which are as I see them much more holistic. And while that includes beautiful art, literally or figuratively, that is only one part of a comic others include things like layout, updates, consistency, etc. etc.

You don't have to know about marketing to market yourself, anyone who knows how to use face book or twitter already knows everything they need to promote their comic and let people know they are trying to win an award. It is a part of the awards if we like it or not so why not make that a good thing for comics. Rather than pretend it doesn't factor we should let people know to take advantage of these tools, given them a chance to learn. That way everyone wins.

A lot of people call getting featured the kiss of death because so many comics stop updating after getting featured. I think this is because it is such a let down after being suddenly given your moment in the sun to have it all go back to normal. That being the case did we do these comics a favor or did we just kill their art? Most artists want to be read and even with you shining the spot light on them if they don't learn to let people know about themselves they'll slip back into darkness.

HoM: You don't know me and I clearly don't know you. I had a lot more to say but I'll just leave it at that.

Used Books: I think the problem is serial voters who just mark their favorite comic in all categories. While #5 “Have the creators submit their comics for nominations rather than having it all be up to the readers” is a really good suggestion in this category it does make for a bit more work on the part of the people who run the contest.

Perhaps a better solution might be simply changing the nomination form. Instead of category → comic why not make it comic → categories and limit the number people can turn in for one comic on the nominee end. It doesn't make the form any more annoying for the user but I think it would cut down on people cutting and pasting one comic name into every field. Most serial voters are doing so out of of laziness so if you can increase the effort even a little bit I think you'll see a lot less across the board nominations. Leave a space at the bottom for people to write in additional nominations if whatever the default number (like 3-5) isn't enough that way you are offering more of a guideline to people than a mandate and those few (If any) that really are motivated for a particular comic can add more nominations.

IE:

Right now you get something like

Best A ->; Comic X
Best B ->; Comic X
Best C ->; Comic X

Change it to

Comic X ->; Category
Category
Category

It structures the whole thing but should actually be less work for the people running the awards.

last edited on July 14, 2011 12:23PM
usedbooks at 11:36PM, July 26, 2010
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That is an interesting suggestion about the nomination forms. We could do something along the lines of restructuring. I am somewhat afraid of people coming up with different spellings for the categories and making the autosorting not work well. (If I understand what you are saying to write in the category. – Although if they see a list on the page, they should be able to spell it.) It's already work catching the different names and spelling people use for the nominees. ^_^; But that is definitely something we can work with to lessen those sorts of votes. (My other suggestion for that was to throw out those ballots altogether. That's what I would do. I'm mean.)

Also, would that limit how many categories a person could nominate a comic for? Or the number of comics they could vote for? Was that 3 to 5 suggestion for the number of comics or category per comic? It would also theoretically let voters nominate two comics for one category – though we could eliminate that by stating only the first one they nominate for a category counts. (I think we'd have trouble if we allowed more than one nominee per category per person, although I doubt that issue would sprout up like the vote one comic for everything issue.) Sorry, my train of thought is taking your suggestion and running all over with it. Heh.

I'd still like to include a couple popular award categories in some capacity as well. I think there's a need and desire for that, though it might be in the unspoken readers who don't make their own comics or frequent the forums. The people who don't say anything except for when results are posted.

So as far as the actions I think are good for next year

~Restructure ballots to minimize voting down the board. (Need to decide details)
~Alter number of finalists depending on the votes (Not all categories are created equal, and we had to limit some to four by necessity this year; some could easily go to 6 – but let's not overburden the judges.)
~Add some popular vote awards in some capacity (either changing some to popular vote or adding an award in addition in some categories)
~Open the comic site to “campaign posters” prior to nomination time – for fun and to get people excited.
~Oh, and at least one or two more volunteers to check the tally and catch each others' oversights.

I think we should see how judging goes this year and ask the panels if they think any categories would work better if put to a popular vote – and the usual questions of whether any categories need dropped, added, or combined.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:38PM
Exzachly at 3:50AM, July 27, 2010
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Zomg, i completely forgot it was awards time! I don't expect to win anything, but its still cool to be a part of it. Good luck all!
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:25PM
Niccea at 7:13AM, July 27, 2010
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Usedbooks, I would personally like to apologize for the different variations that people have been using for The Drunk Duck Mafia. I noticed that there were four different ways last year when all the votes were released. I should have been on the ball reminding people of the name this year.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:14PM
Abt_Nihil at 7:14AM, July 27, 2010
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EEN: I was a bit wary whether I should quote you at all, after reading your first post in this thread :P But I'll just be so bold:

Evil Emperor Nick
Making a beautiful piece of work though isn't what these awards are about, they're about web comics which are as I see them much more holistic. And while that includes beautiful art, literally or figuratively, that is only one part of a comic others include things like layout, updates, consistency, etc. etc.
Yes and no - The main thing I want to be sure of is that categories are taken seriously; for example, that the eventual winner of “best written comic” will have won because the people who decided on its being the winner honestly thought it was the best written comic - and not because its creator is great at advertising. I agree that making a webcomic successful is a fairly holistic endeavor - you have to be good at everything at once - but getting an award for something specific is another thing entirely.

But all in all, I agree with most of what has been brought up by usedbooks and Nicotine so far. And I don't believe the voting system needs a major overhaul or anything, it just needs to be checked and improved in places.

Also, the last thing that should happen is for these awards to cause bad feelings! And I am extremely grateful that JNP has been doing this massive amount of work these year - something which I hadn't quite realized before reading this thread.
last edited on July 14, 2011 10:44AM
usedbooks at 7:16AM, July 27, 2010
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Niccea
Usedbooks, I would personally like to apologize for the different variations that people have been using for The Drunk Duck Mafia. I noticed that there were four different ways last year when all the votes were released. I should have been on the ball reminding people of the name this year.
It's no one's fault. Any comic with a multi-word name is bound to get abbreviated and spelled differently (the Lesbian Pirates from Outer Space, for example). It's just a part of the tally process. :)

Abt_Nihil
Yes and no - The main thing I want to be sure of is that categories are taken seriously; for example, that the eventual winner of “best written comic” will have won because the people who decided on its being the winner honestly thought it was the best written comic - and not because its creator is great at advertising.
Exactly! That's why with the categories set up as we have them, judging panels do work the best. In fact, it is almost tailored that way. When judging on specific things, judges are good. In previous award set ups, there were fewer categories, and they were more open and all-encompassing. For those, an open vote works because people can look at all aspects of their personal favorites and have a whole bunch of reasons for voting as they do. (Including marketing.)

Maybe next year we can add (or replace “best overall” categories) with “Favorite Comic Strip” and “Favorite Story Comic.” And put those to a general vote. Because the word “favorite” encompasses all of those things.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:38PM
JustNoPoint at 8:35AM, July 27, 2010
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Ah more stuff being discussed while I was away! I should be able to respond and get everything rolling today through Friday now!

For the record here is where I stand on the awards in regards to popularity versus personal best.

The nominations part is more akin to what EEN said. It really is more of a popularity contest in a lot of ways. So being good at promoting yourself is very important for it. With the way Drunk Duck's tier list of comics are there are usually 3-4 comics that get ALL the votes. This goes down in niche categories (or stays the same depending on the niche). Then a few lesser known comics get a chance to shine because the audience had to choose between, say “Charby” and “Mob Ties”. The audience can only choose 1 of them and since a lot of readers probably read both it helps the lesser known's chances. It's not perfect and we can do something to try and throw curve balls into the judging part. But for the most part it is important for the readers that we keep true that they have the right to support the most popular comics too!

Now for the flipside. The judging is where I feel like Abt_Nihil above. We take the comics that the reader's liked best and get different minds to try and discuss together the actual merits and “flaws” of each comic comparatively. Trying to find the one comic all 3 can more or less agree on to be the BEST objectively. Or as objectively as any 3 humans working together can be :P In this case it is not always that the most popular is actually the BEST. But also sometimes the most popular IS the best too! I get a little annoyed that some of my personal favorite comics do not get enough nominations to contend. I'm like “You need to get out and tell ppl that you have this awesome comic so they'll KNOW you exist and can vote!!!” XD I guess next time I'll have to launch a promotion campaign for those comics myself :P

I am glad that we can come together to try and work on this. I would discuss the options mentioned more in detail but I best get back to working on all the stuff I got behind on this weekend.I have to have everything ready before judging time in August!

Very nice discussing btw.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:12PM
demontales at 9:40AM, July 27, 2010
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Maybe there could be a “promote yourself” thread in the award forum next year, or somwhere else on the site. The person would also have to say which category they think they fit in, and why. Maybe that would give a little more thoughts to those who put comics in the wrong category or that sometimes hesitate between category like science-fiction/fantasy(if the comic creator thinks he/she belongs in only one of those)
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:10PM
JustNoPoint at 10:14AM, July 27, 2010
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You know. I really like that idea!

Next year we could allow comic artists to make a page to promote their work on the awards before voting time commences! And to let them tell people the categories that they hope to be voted in!
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:12PM
blntmaker at 10:20AM, July 27, 2010
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demontales
Maybe there could be a “promote yourself” thread in the award forum next year, or somwhere else on the site. The person would also have to say which category they think they fit in, and why. Maybe that would give a little more thoughts to those who put comics in the wrong category or that sometimes hesitate between category like science-fiction/fantasy(if the comic creator thinks he/she belongs in only one of those)

There absolutely SHOULD be a “promote yourself” section. Just like the Academy of Arts and Sciences. A sort of “demo reel” section the forums for each category. Post the representative work for each respective category…Much like posting a “For Your Consideration” ad in a trade magazine.

It couldn't hurt…plus the right comics could very well wind up in the right categories.

Beyond JNP and UB? I'm not sure who else is organizing this…maybe more hands can be on deck to moderate those categories in the promo threads.
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:26AM
ttyler at 10:46AM, July 27, 2010
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blntmaker
demontales
Maybe there could be a “promote yourself” thread in the award forum next year, or somwhere else on the site. The person would also have to say which category they think they fit in, and why. Maybe that would give a little more thoughts to those who put comics in the wrong category or that sometimes hesitate between category like science-fiction/fantasy(if the comic creator thinks he/she belongs in only one of those)

There absolutely SHOULD be a “promote yourself” section. Just like the Academy of Arts and Sciences. A sort of “demo reel” section the forums for each category. Post the representative work for each respective category…Much like posting a “For Your Consideration” ad in a trade magazine.

It couldn't hurt…plus the right comics could very well wind up in the right categories.

Beyond JNP and UB? I'm not sure who else is organizing this…maybe more hands can be on deck to moderate those categories in the promo threads.


Now, THAT is heading in the right direction!!!
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:35PM
osakilina at 11:48AM, July 27, 2010
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I agree with the “Promote Yourself” idea!

On a different note, I am wondering why 3 of the 5 finalists for “Best Manga” are by definition not manga. This is not to degrade any of the authors' works, of course, as it's their fans who voted them into those categories … but just because the characters are drawn in a variation of the “anime” style doesn't make the comic itself manga.

I'm sure there are other categories where certain nominees don't exactly fit, but this one stuck out to me as you don't even have to read the entire archive to recognize that the style is not manga.

I think that a lot of what has been discussed so far should really be taken into consideration next year, especially the “this comic doesn't really belong in this category” issue. I feel that popular comics are being voted into every category by the hardcore fans who just want to see their favorite comic win, even if it doesn't really belong in a certain category. I realize that some comics do qualify for multiple categories, but some things should be blatantly obvious to the judges… The votes shouldn't place a comic in a category it doesn't belong in.

In closing: I am not insulting anyone's comic or any of the finalists. I know that the authors are not responsible for the voters.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:22PM
thefightingstranger at 11:51AM, July 27, 2010
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Yeesh, no one listens to me.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:16PM
osakilina at 11:58AM, July 27, 2010
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thefightingstranger
Yeesh, no one listens to me.

thefightingstranger
Maybe for next year, before the nomination voting, there is a “For Your Consideration” page for people who want their comics in the Awards. They can PQ an ad to JNP or who ever runs the awards next year with a list of categories they want to be nominated for. That ad will be displayed for people to see.

This way, even if their great yet overzealous fans nominated them in every category, the organizers can easily eliminate them from categories the creator doesn't want to be in.

I wouldn't say limit the number of categories a comic can be in. I say let the creator's conscious be their guide. Naturally, if someone wants to be nominated for 40 awards, the peers will call them out on it.

osakilina
I think that a lot of what has been discussed so far should really be taken into consideration next year, especially the “this comic doesn't really belong in this category” issue.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:22PM
JustNoPoint at 12:18PM, July 27, 2010
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thefightingstranger
Yeesh, no one listens to me.
I was thinking you meant something else. Now I see you meant the same thing as I agreed with. It was late and I was sleepy and hot from work when I read most of the suggestions regarding the new ideas to try out. I was focusing on the other blunders I made :P

Didn't mean to discredit or not give credit where it is due. I think others said similar too but I'll have to go back and read everything again when I get more time. :)

Oh and their is a leave way factor with many categories. If they could kinda fit I let them in.

I guess next year we can have a stricter approach to this. Maybe make it so that if it is questionable that it won't be in if it is a finalist in many other categories.

As for manga. They all look a good deal like different styles to me :P Then again the actual idea of a category called “comic” (the japanese word for comic) is a bit silly. True manga is very VERY variant. I just go with the idea that if they look a bit mainstream manga in design then it is manga. My own comic is a blend of anime and US influences. But I classify it as manga because I think the readers of manga would like it.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:12PM
usedbooks at 12:28PM, July 27, 2010
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That was on my listing of suggestions I compiled from the post too (well, actually it was suggested in a couple different ways), and blntmaker suggested last year, but it was kinda late to get “early promotion” off the ground. It's hard to organize because we don't have people stepping up to take charge.

It will definitely help voters I think. I imagine many who come to the awards ballot come directly from whatever their favorite comic is and have only that comic in their mind, so they have to try to remember other things they follow or even go looking for new ones to fill out the ballot – if they bother. Otherwise, they'll either fill their one or two favorites in every slot or leave most of it blank.

We can do that in the forum, but a lot of readers don't use forums, even if we link it. We can also have the award website set up in advance and let people send in their promotion pictures. Here is an example off the top of my head (and my favorites list, heh), Shades (thanks DAJB for saving this, the others I knew about were already deleted).

Some people already do this on their own comics, but it would be great to post them on the DD Award “comic” as well. Have everything in one place for voters. I like making use of the DD Award comic for more than just the presentations. We can have a forum thread set up too, and link to it from the ballot.

(We also encourage finalists to make acceptance speeches. If you don't win, we can post them after the awards are over. It's a lot of fun and more promotion. You could make a concession speech or anything else you want too. We had some creative things last year, and those pages turned it into a neat community project/event. Rather than just another set of awards or something just fun for the winners.)

Someone
Beyond JNP and UB? I'm not sure who else is organizing this…maybe more hands can be on deck to moderate those categories in the promo threads.
Um, it's just JNP. All I did was set up the html (which doesn't look as nice as I wanted to anyway) and talk too much. :P I have a strong memory of previous awards, and JNP and I talk outside of DD sometimes (he is my midwest contact for convention travel), so I just nudge him if he forgets something.

But yeah, we definitely need a couple of organizers next year with time and energy. I'm surprised JNP managed to get so much done despite his work schedule and a hundred other commitments (while his poor Devon Legacy is left neglected).
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:38PM
Theskunktrainer at 12:31PM, July 27, 2010
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wow… it's been super interesting reading through all the replies to this! drama, intrigue, and miffed people! awards=always fun…
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:28PM

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