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This meeting felt incredibly fast and quiet compared to every other meeting. We just ran right through things. A little over thirty minutes from start to adjourning sine die.

  • Retrospective Improvement Part 1 is ratified without debate.
  • Retrospective Improvement Part 2 is ratified without debate.
  • Universal Suffrage is ratified without debate.
  • What Our Marks Really Are is adopted without debate and sent on to be considered for ratification in San Jose.
  • The Reasonable Amendment is adopted without debate and sent on to be considered for ratification in San Jose.
  • Make Room! Make Room! is adopted without debate and sent on to be considered for ratification in San Jose.
  • Big thanks all around to everyone, and meeting is adjourned!

And that’s it until next year. If you like what I do, throw the price of a coffee into my tip jar. See y’all in San Jose!

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Originally published at Alex Acks: Sound and Nerdery. You can comment here or there.

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Usual rules apply!

1001: Meeting called to order.

1006: On to the ratification of constitutional amendments still remaining.

1006: Retrospective Improvement Part 1. This is a replacement for retro Hugos. This is to allow retro Hugos for the four year window between the third and fourth WorldCons because “there was a disruption.” “The late unpleasantness.”

1009: Retrospective Improvement Part 1 is ratified without debate and a simple show of hands.

1010: On to Retrospective Improvement Part 2.  Ratified without debate.

1011: Next will be Universal Suffrage. This is basically to prevent a convention committee from selling a convention full weekend pass without including WSFS voting rights. This prevents the decoupling of membership from attendance. WorldCons will still be able to sell individual day passes just fine.

1015: Clarification: full weekend passes bought after the Hugo voting deadline means you wouldn’t be able to exercise Hugo nominating/voting for that year because the deadline was past, but only because of that. And you still would be able to vote/nominate/etc for the next year. And come to the WSFS meeting and vote, and so on.

1017: No debate, Universal Suffrage is ratified.

1017: And that’s all the business from last year! (I think there might be more than a few hangovers in the crowd today.)

1018: Three items of new business remain, as D5 (Requiring Electronic Payments) has been withdrawn, D4 (Name that Award) was passed Friday, and D6-8 (Category reorganization stuff) were referred to committee.

1020: D.1 What Our Marks Really Are. There’s a little language correction to it to instruct the MPC to communicate with NASFiCs as well as WorldCons.

1022: Motion to adopt the amendment without debate. Needs 2/3 majority… which the chair thinks we have. Division is called for, but before I can get the serpentine alarm wound up, the motion is withdrawn. Apparently we are not in a serpentine kind of mood today.

1023: There are some questions but honestly it’s nitpicky and I need more tea, sorry.

1026: No debate, What Our Marks Really Are passes and will be sent to San Jose for ratification.

1026: Next up The Reasonable Amendment. This is a one word change.

1027: Another move to suspend the rules and adopt the motion. This time, it worked just fine. The Reasonable Amendment will be going on to San Jose for ratification.

1028: Last item is Make Room! Make Room! The effect of this would be to make the gray zone boundary between novella and novel 8000 words.

1029: Mr Dunn moves to send to the Hugo Award Study Committee. No second, so that doesn’t happen.

1030: Dr Laurie moves to suspend the rules and adopt the motion. This passes. Make Room! Make Room! will be sent on to San Jose for ratification.

1031: Point of personal privilege from Ms Secor, an all around thank you. Lots of applause.

1032: Almost time to adjourn. The chair announces about fifteen minutes after adjournment, the MPC will meet.

1033: Mr Docherty moves to adjourn Sine Die in memory of David A Kyle, Kathleen Mire, and Peter Weston.

And that’s it! Fastest business meeting ever.

Originally published at Alex Acks: Sound and Nerdery. You can comment here or there.

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Summary for the rather short main business meeting, since I didn’t show up until after site selection and the WorldCon Chairs photo.

  • Best Series is ratified. It will continue as a regular category. It will be up for re-ratification in 2021 and automatically added to the agenda.
  • Three Stage Voting fails ratification.
  • EPH+ fails ratification by a large majority. This is likely because its effect would have strengthened bullet voting still further, and we’ve already seen that happening this year.
  • Motion to suspend EPH fails. EPH will continue to be in effect.
  • Motion to suspend 5 and 6 fails. 5 and 6 will remain in effect. (Discussion was had as to whether this worked at conflict with EPH. Personally, I would need to see more data.)
  • Defining North America is ratified, with apologies from Ben Yalow.
  • Meeting adjourned with dire warning from the chair that we have the room for five hours tomorrow, and we had better not use all that time.

Previous Posts:

Originally published at Alex Acks: Sound and Nerdery. You can comment here or there.

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Sorry to be a few minutes late, everyone.

What we missed: By unanimous consent, the word “volume” in Best Series was changed to “installment” to indicate it doesn’t necessarily have to be a full novel added.

Now we join our meeting, already in progress.

1108: Dr Farah Mendelsohn for the ratification of Best Series. Basically a rehash of the arguments for from last year, indicating there are mechanisms for keeping the category fresh, etc.

1112: Question from Dr Adams; if we ratify this amendment this year, will the series that won for 2017 be eligible since the Best Series this year was actually a special Hugo, not under this amendment. The Chair rules that he declines to rule and it’s up to the administrator for next year’s award.

1115: Ben Yalow speaking against the chair’s ruling. Believes the chair is incorrect because the exclusion clause is “has not won previously 3.3.x” and thus this year’s winner will still be eligible.

1116: Lisa Hayes for; this leaves it open to the administrators. You have to leave it open to the interpretation by the administrators, that’s their job.

1117: Debate ended and question called. The chair’s ruling is sustained.

1117: Dr Adams offering amendment to add that the winner under WorldCon 75 be excluded as if it had won under 3.3.x. Chair rules the motion is out of order. It would increase the scope of the amendment.

1118: Dr Laurie brings up that it’s impossible to actually become familiar with all of the series to vote intelligently.

1119: There is no time left for arguments in favor. Mr Tredaway has an inquiry – does this exclude a graphic series from eligibility? Chair rules that it’s defined by word count, so if you have a graphic series that has that number of words, sure. Dr Adams clarifies that this was asked last year too and answered the same way.

1121: Mr Whyte, this year’s Hugo administrator also against – agrees with Dr Laurie. The joy is in celebrating the work of the previous year. We’re really changing the meaningfulness of that if we’re shifting to work that goes back sometimes decades.

1122: Motion to end debate fails.

1123: Ms Rudolph against – agrees with Dr Laurie, and does not think there will be sufficient Hugo-worthy works to keep nominating after a few years.

1124: Mr Yalow against – has vast sympathies for the burden on the Hugo administrators. Series vs sub-series; uses the “1632” series as an example. How are we defining it? The award is difficult if not impossible to administer.

1125: Mr McCarty against – in all other fiction categories, we judge complete works. The series are not necessarily compete.

1126: SERPENTINE SERPENTINE SERPENTINE (the Chair is in doubt)

1131: 51 for, 39 against. Best Series is ratified. It will become a regular category starting in 2018. Note that it will be up for re-ratification in 2021 and is automatically on the agenda.

1133: Three Stage Voting is up. The chair recuses himself as he intends to speak in favor in debate. Mr Eastlake becomes acting chair.

1134: Mr Harris for – 3SV is a targeted strategy for removing unsuitable works; brings the No Award option forward. All algorithmic approaches are still vulnerable to gaming. The human judgment places the responsibility upon the voters. 3SV is something forced on us as a response by people who are bad actors. The question is if this is still needed. If you think there’s a chance of people coming back with a targeted attack again; if you think the measures are unnecessary and the bad actors have lost interest, then vote against it. What is our success criteria? What do we consider a good ballot? EPH guarantees a couple of good candidates; a lot of us thought that years in the future with categories that are half slate was not great. Decide you are okay, for example, with PNH being displaced by VD because of bullet voting.

1138: PRK has a PoI – would an amendment to make 3SV at the discretion of the Hugo Administrator be a greater or lesser change? The chair rules that this would be a lesser scope change and such an amendment would be in order.

1139: Dr Laurie against – doesn’t think we need this. Thinks making sure we have five good nominees, that’s good enough.

1140: Mr Standlee for – in 2015, Kevin had the choice to preside over the business meeting as opposed to proposing this, and he regrets not doing 3SV then. This strategy is more in keeping with the ethos of the Hugos; it has safeguards built into it. It puts the power in the hands of the voters. It has a supermajority and quorum requirement. It doesn’t empower just the administrator. This takes some of the things the administrators have had to do in secret and quickly before, and puts them in the open and in the hands of the voters. During the preliminary period, that’s when permission and eligibility checks for the nominees; and now the Hugo admins can openly ask for help contacting people instead of trying to do so in secret. Also takes burden of keeping quiet from potential finalists. Crowdsources the eligibility and contact research.

1144: Ms Secor against – introduces a political stage to the Hugos.

1146: Mr Wallace for – welcomes this amendment as an author of EPH and EPH+. Helps restore the honor of being a finalist. By putting junk nominations out there.

1147: Ms Deneroff question – is this intended to replace EPH or be an adjunct?

1148: Mr Whyte against – as this year’s Hugo admin, has changed his position on this. Says puppies are no longer a problem. Doesn’t think there’s sufficient evidence for thresholds set in amendment.

1151: Question – is it possible to delay this another year so we don’t have to go through the whole process? Not as such, but there are ways to effectively do that.

1152: Mr Oakes for – this will be very easy to implement. Does not trust VD to keep his word. (hear hear!)

1154: Mr Boucher moves to insert “at the discretion of the site selection of the Hugo Administrator” – Kevin Standlee requests it’s “the administering WorldCon” as a point of order. No objection.

1155: Mr Boucher in favor of the amendment – we need weapons that are available to us, but doesn’t mean we have to use them constantly.

1156: Mr Yalow against – 3SV is already becoming a political question. This makes it more political and puts the administrator in the heart of the politics.

1157: Kevin Standlee with a PoI – would this increase the scope of the change. Chair is of the opinion that it decreases the scope and as such is a lesser change.

1157: Chair’s ruling is appealed. Sorry, not following the ruling appeal debate because I needed another cup of tea.

1201: Question is called on appeal of the chair’s ruling. We are three deep now and people are getting confused, so Mr Eastlake is explaining it. And we’re a SERPENTINE HOLD ON TO YOUR BUTTS

1205: 40 for, 47 against; chair’s ruling is overturned, making this proposed amendment a major change.

1206: Back to the amendment. Kevin moves to call the question. Seconded. (This would mean voting to the amendment and then the underlying proposal with no further debate.)

1208: Mr Cronengold has a PI – has there been sufficient debate? Yes.

1208: Mr Yalow with a PI – will you have to have two calls on who wishes to speak? Yes.

1209: Dr Laurie is confused (ME TOO, DR LAURIE) – voting order of the stack? Yes. Okay.

1210: Question is called on all pending questions. So we’re going to vote on the amendment first. Nays have it and amendment fails. (The bit about the additional clause.)

1210: Now onto ratification of 3SV. Ratification is defeated.

1211: 10 minute recess.

1223: And we’re back. The chair would like to remind us that when he asks if there is objection, if you do not object, keep your mouth shut. There is no objection to taking up EPH+ before the motion to suspend EPH.

1223: Now we will have a report from the Hugo Administrators on EPH not to exceed 10 minutes.

1224: Mr Whyte has provided detailed reports. Perhaps unprecedentedly so.

1226: This is a really impressive number of reports Mr Whyte has produced, y’all.

1229: Clear conclusion: EPH this year made it much harder for slate candidates to get on the nomination list, but made it easier for those with bullet voting to do so.

1231: Move to thank the administrator and his staff for going above and beyond on this analysis. Lots of applause.

1233: On to EPH+, or rather the amendment for EPH+. Recognizing Mr Wallace first to speak in favor. Chair is ruling that if the amendment for EPH+ passes, it will be a greater change and there will need to be an additional for EPH+ for ratification.

1235: The ruling of the chair is appealed. Five minutes of debate that comes out of the five minutes for the amendment. The chair says looking at the proposal, it’s changing a lot of stuff and the only way to digest it properly is with another year.

1236: Ms Secor against the ruling – the effect of 6.1 is to make the use of EPH+ is optional. Making things optional is a lesser and not a greater change.

1236: Mr Yalow for the ruling – in our recent history, ie a few minutes ago, we decided things that give greater power and flexibility that did not exist prior in fact do constitute greater changes. We should follow the precedent that we set twenty minutes ago.

1237: Mr Cronengold against the ruling – the change here is that 6.1 would allow the business meeting to make the change available a year in advance. It makes a sunrise clause. It does not expand the scope.

1238: Dr Laurie calls the question on the appeal. Chair’s ruling is sustained. The amendment is a greater change if passed and will require an additional year of ratification.

1239: Motion to extend debate back to five minutes since we just used a bunch of the amendment’s debate time. There is objection because I think we want to keep moving.

1240: Debate clock is not reset because there’s less than 2/3 voting for it.

1241: Dave Wallace for the amendment – the effect is to make EPH+ optional on a vote of the business meeting. It’s the extra strength version; makes anti-slate stronger but also makes bullet voting stronger.

1243: Mr Harris against – it’s not helpful to switch this on and off from year to year; this only becomes clear in Jan/Feb when people start announcing intent.

1244: The amendment fails. Now on to EPH+.

1245: Mr Wallace for – This has a stronger anti-slating effect. Given that 3SV has failed, we should pass EPH+, because he does not trust the chief puppy to abandon his efforts. Doesn’t think we’ve seen the end of it.

1247: Mr McCarty against – EPH does reward bullet voting. People who nominate only one thing get disproportionate strength under this system. Under EPH+ this becomes even worse.

1248: Mr Cronengold moves to add a one year sunrise…. can’t do that, since amendments are considered speech against.

1248: Ms Hayes against – fundamentally against EPH, and thus EPH+ is basically worse. It’s a magic box.

1251: Debate ended, we are voting to ratify of EPH+.

1251: EPH+ is NOT ratified by a vast majority.

1253: Mr Yalow speaking for suspending EPH for a year because the way it encourages people to bullet vote. EPH makes nominating harder to explain. Points out that Sad Puppies, who include longtime members of fandom, changed their behavior to be less bad, while the rabids went back to gaming things.

1255: Mr Dunn against – if EPH goes away, what’s to say the slates won’t return? The suspension motion was just up if things interacted strangely, which they didn’t.

1256: Ms Hayes for – agreement with Ben Yalow

1257: Ms Stark against – bullet voting allows one bad candidate on the list, but that’s what 5 and 6 is for. Don’t bring back the slates.

1257: Mr Bloom for – his opinion that EPH has no effect on the puppies. The No Awarding is what made them change their strategy.

1258: Alex speech against (hi this is Corina).  Getting rid of EPH would be bad because the Puppies are watching and won’t give up.  Sad that 3SV was struck down so strongly suggesting it be kept on until we get something better.

1300: Mr Kovalcek for – better we have a clear system that is easy to explain in the short term. EPH is horrible, we need to come up with something better.

1300: Mr Renda against – EPH is bad, but it’s the price we pay for having better resistance to slates.

1301: Mr McCarty for – for the record; while we use EPH we will continue to get perverse results with things getting knocked off the ballot for inexplicable reasons.

1303: Mr Pomeranz against – reluctantly, defends EPH. Thinks the greatest harm will be swinging back and forth too quickly. Get more data on the results. The ill effects are not so significantly bad as to need to remove it immediately.

1304: By vast majority, the motion fails. EPH continues in effect for the following year.

1305: 10 minute recess.

1314: Meeting back in order. We are on to Defining North America.

1316: Mr McCarty proposes to suspend rules so we can bring up 5 and 6 now to dispose of like business together.

1318: Rules are suspended, motion to suspend 5 and 6 for one year is before the meeting.

1319: Clarification: laying a motion on the table does not specify when we will pick it back up. It requires a motion to pick it back up. If we do not pick it back up before the meeting is adjourned sine die, the motion dies.

1319: Mr Yalow is not asking a question where he knows the answer already for once. We are not allowed to adjourn sine die when there is still privileged business on the agenda, so is this motion privileged?

1320: Chair: We can adjourn sine die without picking it back up.

1321: Motion to lay on the table fails.

1321: Now on to the motion to suspend 5 and 6.

1322: Mr Bloom in favor of suspending 5 and 6 because we didn’t suspend EPH and says they are at cross purposes. At least one should be suspended.

1324: Mr Cronengold against – please stop switching back and forth. Let’s see how it runs for a little bit.

1325: Mr McCarty in favor – We’ve tested EPH against many sets of data. If there is a slate of five candidates, the candidates that EPH knocks off, like 50% of the time it puts them back on. These don’t work well together.

1326: Mr Desjardin against – consistency, some resistance against slating. It makes a better ballot. What was added to the ballot this year was mostly very good works. Anecdotal experience is that this is a very popular change.

1327: Ms Hayes calls the question. Seconded. Question is called.

1327: Motion fails overwhelmingly. 5 and 6 remains in effect for one year.

1328: Back to Defining North America.

1330: Ms Dashoff – why is central America part of North America here? Chair rules that’s actually debate. Okay.

1331: Mr Yalow for – being the person who carelessly and accidentally took it out of the constitution years ago, he apologizes for the necessity of putting it back in.

1331: What about the Caribbean islands? Does this extend to islands bordering the Gulf of Mexico? Yes, those things are part of the Caribbean.

1333: Mr Cronengold moves to call the question. Soundly seconded. Question is called.

1333: Motion is ratified by a very large majority.

1334: No, Iceland is not eligible to hold a NASFiC. (Continents, not tectonic plates, people.)

1334: Mr Kovalcek motions to adjourn.

1334: Mr Cronengold wants to debate.

1335: Mr Kovalcek for the motion – most of us are tired and stayed up late last night. It’d be better to come back tomorrow when we’re fresh.

1336: Kevin notes that we have the room for five hours tomorrow. DO NOT MAKE US USE ALL THAT TIME. Meeting adjourned.

Originally published at Alex Acks: Sound and Nerdery. You can comment here or there.

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Summary for all the action on Friday!

  • Kevin Standlee gives the report for the MPC and we re-elect the standing members.
  • Nitpicking and Flyspecking Committee report by Mr Eastlake. All members reappointed by the chair.
  • FOLLE Committee continues with no objection.
  • YA Award Committee officially sunsets this year and are thanked for their hard work.
  • The “No Vanishing Business” resolution returns with new language from the committee. Effectively, this will allow people to withdraw new business they’ve submitted to WSFS (with agreement from all submitting parties) up to 4 weeks before the first business meeting. The withdrawn business will still be available to be viewed, so that in the remaining two weeks before the business meeting deadline that business can be resubmitted if someone still really wants it brought up.
  • Committee report from the Hugo Award Study Committee from Mr. Docherty, which mostly acknowledges who has volunteered, tentative plans for moving forward, etc. Items D.6-8 are referred back to the study committee until next year.
  • Best Series Category is postponed definitely until Saturday, so it can be considered after seeing the Hugo results.
  • December Is Good Enough is ratified and will take effect next year. (This moves the deadline for buying memberships if you want to nominate for the Hugos up to December 31.)
  • Two Years Are Enough barely passes, 45-41. This N+1 WorldCon membership will no longer confer nominating rights for the Hugo. 2019 will be an exception to this.
  • The Young Adult Award is ratified 65-27.
    • A new amendment to name the YA Award “The Lodestar Award” passes despite items to change it to the L’Engle. This amendment is sent on for ratification in 2018.
    • So it should be noted that technically while we have an award in 2018, it can’t possibly have an official name until 2019 at the earliest. There was some wrangling over how WorldCon 76 might be able to get around this using the WorldCon’s constitutional power to create a special Hugo award.

Previous Posts:

Originally published at Alex Acks: Sound and Nerdery. You can comment here or there.

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Good morning everyone! I feel less like death today, so keep your fingers crossed for me. Liveblog will commence shortly, normal rules apply. Just waiting for the secretary of the meeting to arrive…

1004: Kevin Standlee calls the meeting to order.

1011: MPC report. Good news, marks were registered in the EU last year.

1013: Dr Adam – this year, as part of the New Zealand bid the marks and domain have been registered for 2020 and will pass that on to whichever bid wins. Would be good for the committee to do this advance registration as a matter of course. May be a good idea to register some years ahead as there’s been a shift in the WorldCon naming scheme that’s made it much more predictable and we don’t want the domains, etc, being poached.

1015: Vince Docherty – we purchased WorldCon.com some time ago and it was expensive to get, make sure we know we have that one.

1015: Kevin is responsible for most of the words on the main websites, so blame him if there’s a problem.

1016: MPC elections. Reminder that these ballots are preferential.

1021: Election closed.

1021: Nitpicking and Flyspecking Committee report from Mr Eastlake.

1023: All members reappointed by chair. Kevin Standlee will be chair unless the committee prefers someone else.

1024: Mr Wilmuth reports for the WorldCon Runners Guide standing committee. They’d like to move the guide to a new domain potentially. Mr Standlee suggests they consult with the Hugo Awards Marketing Committee, which controls the sites. Committee is reappointed.

1026: FOLLE Committee is continued with no objection.

1026: YA Committee report is included and implicitly part of the YA Award debate. Committee has no request to continue and will sunset at this WorldCon.

1026: Ms Neal thanks the YA Committee for their work. There’s applause. THANK YOU GUYS.

1027: “No Vanishing Business” Committee Report has come back with language for the proposed standing rule change. Basically, would change things so up to 4 weeks before the Business Meeting, new business could be withdrawn. Then withdrawn business would have to be available to be viewed. Business could be withdrawn if everyone who proposed it agreed to it. (This would then give everyone a 2 week window to step in and re-propose the withdrawn business if they wanted, before the agenda is frozen for the Business Meeting.)

1032: Six minutes of debate time is agreed on.

1031: Kate Secor in favor. Permitting people to withdraw business that they’ve decided is a bad idea without having to waste the business meeting’s time; this seems the balance between that efficiency and disappointing people who look forward to debating that business at the meeting.

1034: Member wants notice of withdrawn business established.

1034: Mr Eastlake notes that at this time, there is no provision to allow for the notification of the members for submitted business.

1035: Motion to call the question, which is seconded.

1035: Mr Cronengold has  point of order. Does call the question outrank motion to amend. Yes. And that’s actually a parliamentary inquiry. Call the question outranks almost anything.

1036: Question is called, debate is ended. So now we’ll vote on “No Vanishing Business.”

1037: The item is adopted and will take effect next year.

1038: One minute recess.

1040: MPC members re-elected.

1041: Hugo Awards Study Committee, Mr Docherty. (Mr Docherty: “How long?” Mr Standlee: “Technically 42 minutes.” Mr Docherty: “I’ll do it in interpretive mime.”) Briefly going over the report. If you wish to participate in the committee, please contact him as noted in the report.

1042: Is there any objection to referring D6-8 back to the study committee for next year? No objections.

1043: WorldCon and NASFiC reports are in the packet, not going to go over them here.

1043: Okay, we are on to business referred from 2016 WorldCon. Up first: BEST SERIES!

1044: Motion to postpone until tomorrow until after we see the Hugo Award results. Seconded. And the affirmative has that, so it is postponed until tomorrow.

1045: On to C.2 December Is Good Enough. This is moving the deadline on when you’re eligible to nominate for the Hugos. Debate time is 8 minutes.

1046: Mr White gets to go first. It’s fairly straightforward and technical. This is simply because the most tedious element of administering is merging the member list for the current and previous WorldCon. Simply better to end it on the calendar year. This may facilitate 3SV, but will not speak on that further.

1048: Corina is speaking! Finances are generally much tighter for people in December, so extending through January will make it easier for people to get in.

1049: Mr Oakes the process of merging the data is very complicated. Moving back a month would save a significant amount of work. Would allow them to get the award nominations up much sooner.

1050: No objection to ending debate and bringing it to vote.

1050: Motion is ratified. This will take effect next year.

1050: Now C.3 Two Years Are Enough. This is to make it so the people from the past and present WorldCon get to nominate for the Hugos. This would disallow the members of the future WorldCon as is current from nominating, though 2019 will be grandfathered in.

1051: Mr Harris for; this simplifies the data merging process. N+1 members are mostly people who voted in site selection… who for the most part are members of the N WorldCon. This change was originally made to get more people participating in nominating for the Hugo Awards. That’s obviously not a problem anymore… [bitter laughter from the crowd]

1053: Dr Adams against; when we have a WorldCon in a new place, we get people who join fairly soon after the WorldCon is seated. We want to bring those people in as soon as possible and encourage more people to join and be involved.

1055: Mr Wallace for; anyone new to the WorldCon family can get a supporting membership in the current year’s WorldCon. Doesn’t think it would have that great of an impact.

1055: Mr Walling against; while the number of 50-100 has been bandied around. A lot of times when a WorldCon is in a new place, people will join early in order to vote in site selection to bring that WorldCon to them. They tend to join too late to be involved if this measure is accepted. As is, this encourages more participation.

1057: Mr Kovalcek in favor; if people have joined the year before to vote, they would already be eligible. Have to do the best job we can instead of trying to do everything and doing it badly.

1058: Mr Whyte against; the real hassle is merging the previous and current year’s membership. The next year’s really isn’t that big of a deal since it’s not that large. This is a marketing opportunity to bring more people in. This helps boost membership and participation. Also think it looks bad for this meeting to be restricting the franchise.

1059: I have no idea who is speaking. For LonCon though, N+1 came to about 117 new names.

1101: Point of Order from me: will the chair please remind people to state their names.

1101: Mr Yalow in favor; this provides an incentive to join because you get greater rights.

1103: On the motion to ratify, here we go… oooh it’s close.


1106: Affirmative 45, negative 41. Motion is barely ratified.

1106: We have now reached 11 o’clock, but Chair suggests a recess until 1115.

1116: Meeting back in order. We are taking up C.11 Young Adult Award and C.11.1 Clean Up “Young Adult” Award, which names the award and has been ruled to not change the scope and therefore will not postpone the implementation of the amendment.

1117: Looking at the amendment to name. Ms Rask for; there was a lot of debate about the issue, and this was the best compromise for the naming concern. Technical stuff here for how the voting and naming will work; basically naming will begin as soon as the main amendment is passed.

1119: Dr Laurie against; so we’re going to have a Not A Hugo that’s for YA but there’s no requirement it will be named ever. This sounds like a bad thing for the MPC.

1120: Kevin strongly reminds us that members don’t get to talk to each other. All comments are THROUGH the chair.

1121: Mr Cronengold for; … sorry, I’ve lost the thread of this argument. This is some technical stuff here.

1122: Ms Secor against; we have been told the naming of this award is contentious so we might be debating this for years. But we’ll still be giving out the award. Would rather say that we have to name the thing or we’re just not going to pass it at all.

1124: C.11.1 passes, so the blanks are stricken out of the Young Adult Award amendment.

1124: NOW C.11 Young Adult Award, Ms Rask for. She is one of the assistant chairs and will give the report. Has been instructed by the chair to not discuss the naming because that is not in the scope. Asking everyone to consider the award in a positive light.

1126: Chair reminds us there is a provision that this will have to be re-ratified by the 2021 Business Meeting.

1126: Ms Secor has a motion to amend, so that the award should not be given out until there is a name for it. But worded in a way that leaves it to the discretion of the WorldCon.

1127: Mr Dunn proposes now for a second order amendment to make “need not” to “shall not” to remove the discretion from the WorldCon concom. He is seconded, but there is objection to the suspension of the rules.

1128: We are having amendmentception here guys.

1128: No rules suspension 4 u. So that amending of the amendment fails and we’re back to the original.

1129: Question (sorry, he said his name SUPER FAST): will this be a greater change? Chair rules that this does not increase the scope of the amendment, which would allow it to be ratified here.

1130: Mr Cooper PI: British versus American English, suggests changing presented to awarded. Kevin agrees, since technically speaking we are not required to hold a Hugo ceremony.

1131: Ms Secor for this amendment – there is sufficient concern about giving out a nameless award. This would be a way to let us pass the award with allowing us to still hold it back if a name hasn’t been agreed on.

1131: Mr Peterson: believes that there is already the name; there’s capitalized “Young Adult Award” which would be the name. Point of order? No, per Kevin, not well taken. He’s pretty sure that YA authors would rather have an award with a generic name rather than no award at all.

1133: PRK point of order: says member is not debating amendment, but Kevin rules Mr Peterson is speaking to the amendment.

1134: Dr Laurie for – it’s not a Hugo, it’s not a Campbell, it’s just “an award” so it has no standing.

1135: Mr Yalow against – agrees in general that we should not give out a nameless; we can’t have a second order amendment, we decided that earlier. But he wants a shall rather than may, so he wants to defeat the amendment and then propose his own.

1137: Motion to call the question on the amendment, seconded. Debate is ended on this amendment.

1138: Amendment fails.

1138: Now Mr Yalow proposes a new amendment with a shall not instead of need not. (Thus requiring a WorldCon to not give out an award if it’s unnamed.)

1140: Ms Neal going to speak against this amendment as no speech for. Concern is that this amendment will delay the implementation of the award, which has already been delayed for years. Thinks it is worth giving an award out even with a generic name rather than stopping this momentum. Vote down this amendment.

1141: Mr Gunston PoI: would this amendment prevent the concom from exercising its existing power to create a special Hugo category for a YA award. Kevin says in that case, it would be a Hugo rather than a Not-a-Hugo as proposed.

1143: Dr Adams for – if you’re going to do this, then don’t do it in this silly way. Do it right from the start.

1144: Mr Gerrib against – let’s not allow the perfect to be the enemy of the good. We’ve been working on this for years, let’s DO IT.

1144: Dr Laurie for – thinks this is the only way we’re actually going to get a name for this award.

1145: Mr Peterson against – there’s time already provisioned for getting the award named.

1145: Mr Dunn for – just because there’s time on the agenda doesn’t mean it’ll get done.

1146: Mr Cronengold against – if we want a name, just do a greater change instead of leaving something dangling in the constitution.

1147: Question is called.

1149: SERPENTINE TIME, GUYS. BUCKLE UP. (argh this is tough, because I really don’t like this amendment, but I think if we don’t attach it, a bunch of people are going to turn on the YA Award and it won’t get ratified at all. Arggggggh.)

1151: Negative has it (56-35), provision is not adopted.

1152: We are back to the underlying motion, the award itself. Oh god this is tense. And of course there’s a one minute recess.

1153: We’re back with Ms Rask now talking for the underlying motion. Quick going over the committee report for the naming timeline. There were 460 names suggested and all were researched and vetted.

1155: Mr Dashoff with a PoI – can we put “WSFS” in front of the name? That would be a greater change.

1156: Mr Bloom against – opposed to dividing fiction into categories. We want the best of the best and that’s it.

1157: Mr Cronengold moves to call the question. Seconded. Debate is closed.

1158: Oh god here it is, we’re voting on the YA Award.

1158: SERPENTINE NUMBER FOUR KIDS. Kevin thinks the affirmative has it, but we’ll be happier with a count.

1200: 65 for the YA Award. Now counting negative.

1200: 27 against. WE HAVE A YA AWARD GUYS!!!!

1201: 5 minute recess.

1209: And we’re back. Next up is naming the YA Award. First we will vote on the suggested name, yes or no. If it fails, then we will solicit suggestions.

1210: Mr Cronengold asks that the matter be laid on the table so the committee can correct errors in its report for about 5 minutes.

1211: I just want a recording of Kevin saying, “FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE MEMBER RISE?” as a ringtone on my phone.

1212: Affirmative has it, we’re laying the naming aside for not more than five minutes while the YA committee speaks to us about its corrections. It’s basically just a two percent bump on one of the numbers.

1214: Back to the naming. This currently is to pick a name to put in the blank that will then be voted on in the motion to name.

1216: Lodestar is now in the blank. So the question is now D.4 Name That Award. This has the effect of if it is ratified, the award will be named Lodestar in 2019, so the 2018 award would be nameless.

1219: Mr Cronengold asks if we can put retroactive naming in the amendment. Chair rules no.

1220: We are appealing the ruling of the chair.

1221: Mr Thorpe – sees no reason why we can’t retroactively name it. (I think?)

1221: Debate is ended and the appeal for the ruling is on the table. The chair’s ruling is sustained.

1223: About 14 minutes remain to debate the motion.

1224: Mr Peterson from the committee for; since MidAmeriCon, the primary issue has been the name. They’ve spent a lot of time debating and vetting. It doesn’t violate any other award names or copyrights.

1225: Dr Laurie against because the vast majority wanted Madeline L’Engle, wants to strike Lodestar and substitute that name instead.

1227: Ms Rask against this change. The question about whether to name the award after a person is very contentious. For example, L’Engle has been criticized for her depiction of LGBT characters and promotion of an Evangelical mission. Also, she’s mostly really promoted by people of a certain age group.

1229: Yalow for the change – if we want public recognition for the award; using the name of an author is more likely to get public attention and will have more credibility.

1230: Motion to extend debate by 5 minutes by PRK. Debate is not extended.

1231: Motion to call the question. Seconded. Okay, question is called.

1231: Negative has it, amendment fails. We’re keeping Lodestar rather than going with L’Engel.

1232: Ms Hayes calls the question on the underlying amendment too. Seconded.

1232: PoI from Dr Laurie – if we vote to use Lodestar, can next year’s business meeting change the name prior to ratification? The chair rules that this kind of change would be major and require an additional year for ratification.

1233: Ms Rudolph with a PoI – is there anything in the rules that would prevent the WorldCon from using the name that will be up for ratification? The chair rules that the con would not be allowed to use the name. Dr Adams asks that the chair recuse himself and hands off to Mr Eastlake.

1234: Mr Eastlake rules next year’s convention could use weasel wording to mostly get around this.

1235: Mr Lee comes to support Mr Eastlake, who says he does not need support but thanks anyway.

1236: Mr Kovalcek asks if we are voting on the ruling. Mr Eastlake: the ruling hasn’t been appealed, do you want to appeal it? Mr Kovalcek: No. In that case, can next year’s WorldCon choose to have their special Hugo Category and call it the Lodestar?

1238: We are down a definitional rabbit hole, y’all, and it’s getting very silly.

1243: We are now voting on the appeal of the ruling of the chair. Which is that next year’s WorldCon can create a special Hugo and call it the Lodestar award for this purpose. Ruling is sustained.

1244: Now the question is if we are calling the question for D.4

1245: Okay, question is called. We’re getting there. Now will we adopt the name?

1245: The affirmative has it. The name motion passes. The YA Award is named Lodestar, subject to ratification.

1246: Tomorrow when we convene, site selection business only to start. Recess at 10:30 will be the former WorldCon chairs photo. Not before 1100 we will reconvene for regular business. You don’t have to be here until 11 if you aren’t interested in those things.

1248: Ms Secor says reports requested from the Hugo Administrator will be distributed at 10. You don’t have to stay, but come pick up the reports so you can study them before the business meeting comes back to order at 11.

1249: Meeting is adjourned until 1000 tomorrow.

Originally published at Alex Acks: Sound and Nerdery. You can comment here or there.

katsu: (Default)

Shame on me for not looking at these earlier. But I will be prepared as we move forward.

From the agenda here.

D.1 What Our Marks Really Are: This is basically a maintenance thing for mark protection that allows faster response times by the MPC for what notices it includes in its publications. Considering right now there’s an inflexible two-year constitutional amendment process in place, seems like a smart move. (I don’t recall there ever being meeting controversy about mark protection for as long as I’ve attended. It’s an important but unexciting thing.)

D.2 The Reasonable Amendment: This is an amendment for Nominee Diversity, which is the amendment we ratified that says you can’t have more than two works in the same category that are from the same dramatic presentation series or written by the same author. All this amendment does is change “WorldCon Committee shall make best efforts to notify those…” to “WorldCon Committee shall make reasonable efforts to notify those…” which seems, well, reasonable to me.

D.3 Make Room! Make Room! This amends section 3.2.8; currently that section allows the Committee to relocate a story to a more appropriate Hugo Category if it’s within 5,000 words or 20% of the new category limits. The amendment would get rid of the 5,000 words, so the requirement will just be within 20% of the category limit. The reason for this is the marketing/perception of novels and novellas versus their actual word count, which most nominators are not going to know and means that novels are getting nominated as novellas on occasion and vice versa. This effectively changes the “wiggle room” between novella and novel to be 8,000 words instead of 5,000, which seems fine to me.

D.4 Name That Award: This is for the naming of the YA Award, assuming that it passes. Considering I’d like the YA Award to have some name (and for it to pass) I’m in favor. We’ll see what the offered names end up being. There’ll be runoff voting on them.

D.5 got postponed indefinitely so I’m not going to bother looking at it.

D.6 The Division of the Hugo Award Best Novel Category: Basically they want to split the Best Novel Hugo into Best Fantasy Novel and Best Science Fiction Novel, since there are a lot of other awards that have things split up by genre. I’m… not really in favor of this as such. First, it introduces a serious inconsistency into the awards, if you’re going to split novel up but not any of the other lengths. The unique aspect of the Hugos until now has been that all the spec fic gets to ride together, and the divisions are based almost entirely on length rather than segregation by subgenre. There is a definitional issue here as well; the discussion basically wants to use publishing-derived categorization, but that seems like something of a nightmare for administration purposes because nominating fans are likely to go by what they perceive its category to be, not necessarily what the publisher says. There’s plenty out there that straddles the line… depending on how you define it. This sounds like serious fan-wank waiting to happen. I’m also not really in favor of anything that’s going to make life easier on the “my genre is better than your genre” crowd, but YMMV.

On the other hand, I’m generally in favor of anything that means there will be more rockets, because I don’t think a few more awards is going to dilute the impact of winning a Hugo. But god save me from anyone who would use the dual existence of the novel category to try to kill novelette YET AGAIN under the banner of “there are too many Hugos.” Or more accurately, god save them from me.

D.7 Reorganization of the Best Related Work Category: So this is basically another “This is how the Locus Award does it” case, which wants to split “Best Related Work” into “Best Non-Fiction Book” and “Best Art Book.” I think there’s an issue here to begin with by calling out the categories as “Books.” While the written definitions are a little looser, particularly for Non-Fiction, it gives the impression that only books are welcome in the categories. But consider this year we had a series of blog posts from Tor.com nominated, and previously entire seasons of Writing Excuses. I wouldn’t be surprised in the future if we get some trans-media stuff, more things like post series, who knows what else. I’d rather not see those fringe-y, related works that really don’t fit neatly in the other categories get left out because we’ve felt the need to more rigidly define them. I consider the nebulous nature of “Related Work” to be a feature, not a bug in this sense. Also questioning seriously if “Best Art Book” is really going to have enough nominations in it yearly to make it a viable and vibrant category.

D.8 Best Dramatic Presentation Reorganization: basically wants to rearrange the two current dramatic presentation categories so we’ll have Dramatic Presentation Long Form, Dramatic Presentation Episodic Form, Dramatic Presentation Short Form, and Dramatic Presentation Series. (So yes, we’d be having four categories instead of the current two.) I actually kind of like the idea of splitting up Episodic Form and Short Form, in the sense that episodes have really drowned out anything else short and speculative from the category for quite some time. This could make room for some really interesting stuff… or it could just create a category that’s not going to get a lot of traffic. Only time would tell on that one. But I’m really questioning Best Episodic Form versus Best Series… which is basically cutting between stand-alone episodes of anthology series versus long-arc series. Are there enough anthology shows versus long-arc shows to fill out two categories? Don’t know, don’t watch that much television. I don’t object to this as much as some of the other proposed reorganizations of categories, though again I’m wondering how this’ll sit with the “we give too many Hugos out” crowd.

Originally published at Alex Acks: Sound and Nerdery. You can comment here or there.

katsu: (Default)

As usual for the Preliminary Business Meeting, today we were setting the agenda for the next three days of meetings, particularly agreeing upon debate times for the various items. Here is a link to the agenda, and my own thoughts on the new proposed amendments.


  • Big thank you here to Zalia and Corina for covering the first hour of the meeting for me. Love you guys.
  • Happy birthday to Kevin Standlee!
  • Standing rule changes:
    • No Candidate Regions (A.1), Debate Time Streamlining (A.3), and Butt Out (A.5) pass.
    • Electronic Documents Are a Thing (A.4) fails.
    • No Vanishing Business (A.2) is referred to committee, to be reported back on Friday.
  • Resolutions:
    • Kimo no Na wa (B.1) has its Hugo eligibility extended by a year.
    • Artist Eligibility (B.2) is sent to a committee. (More on this committee in a minute.)
    • Convention Publications to Be Delivered to Members (B.3) is replaced with the B.3.1 version, which is then adopted.
  • All constitutional amendments from the 2016 business meeting are assigned debate times and will be considered in the coming days. Also, there are motions to suspend both EPH and 5 and 6 up for debate. Please note that this is baked in to our adopting of both of those amendments last year; we required ourselves to reconsider them yearly to assess if they are working as intended. Both EPH and 5 and 6 have been postponed definitely to the Saturday business meeting, so they can be debated in light of this year’s Hugo results.
  • New constitutional amendments:
    • What Our Marks Really Are (D.1), The Reasonable Amendment (D.2), Make Room! Make Room! (D.3), Name That Award (D.4) have debate time set and will be considered at the main business meeting.
    • Requiring Electronic Payments (D.6) is postponed indefinitely at the request of its originator to allow better consideration of its implications.
    • The Division of the Hugo Award Best Novel Category (D.6), A Reorganization of the Best Related Category (D.7), and Best Dramatic Presentation Reorganization (D.8) are all referred to committee, to be reported back on before anything else is to be done with them.
  • SO ABOUT THAT COMMITTEE. A Hugo Award Study Committee was created to consider the best artist issues, and then had its mandated expanded by the meeting to consider all Hugo categories – but only categories, NOT anything to do with nominating or voting. This is the committee that D.6-8 were referred to. They will be making recommendations for the 2018 business meeting.
    • Committee members: Vincent Docherty will be chairman. Other appointed members: Nicholas Whyte, Chris Barkley, Kevin Standlee, Kate Secor, Michael Lee, Catherine Duval, John Hurts conditionally if he is prepared to cooperate with the committee’s requirements.
  • Mark Protection Committee nominations were made without incident.
  • And this is where we ran out of time for the day. Other items normally seen to on Preliminary Meeting day will have to just get done tomorrow because people got very exercised about the Publications resolution.

All right, going to take a look at these new proposed amendments.

Previous Posts:

  • Preliminary Business Meeting: Liveblog

Originally published at Alex Acks: Sound and Nerdery. You can comment here or there.

katsu: (Default)

Hello everyone! It’s Thursday at WorldCon 75, I’m sick with a cold, and it’s time for the Preliminary Business Meeting! Liveblog will commence when the meeting starts. As usual, updates will come every 5-ish minutes or so. Apologies for mis-spelling names and the like, please leave corrections in the comments and I will get them later.

Also! As a wrinkle this year, for the first hour I’m going to be on a panel, so the liveblog will be taken care of by my friends Corina and Zalia (say hi, everyone) and they’ll do their best. I’ll be back at about 1100 local time and will take over.

(If you want the short summary of what happened, see here.)

9.54: There is sweet blessed coffee for the attendees of the business meeting.

1001: Business meeting for noobs video displayed which is very helpful for me to get a feel for this.

1010: HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Kevin Standlee who is spending his birthday chairing the business meeting. We thank you with a gift of a new official gavel, engraved with ‘Kevin Standlee. Chairman WSFS’.

1012: The Business Meeting will be in order! Introductions and thanks. Videos of the meeting will be uploaded to the YouTube channel and is currently being Livestreamed on the Worldcon 75 YouTube channel.

1017: Awwww yes, Business Attendee Ribbons that are visible from space!

1019: Today we will be setting the agenda, deciding time limits, hearing reports, looking at rule changes, hearing resolutions, looking at time limits for constitutional amendments, and having the initial consideration of new Consitutional Amendments. Presentations for future Worldcons will be done at the Fannish Inquisition panel at 1pm today in the same room as the business meting (207)

1023: First Main Business meeting takes place on Friday, Site Selection Business Meeting will be on Saturday with presentations from 2019 and 2018 Worldcon hosts. Maybe from 2020 potential bids if there is time.

1025: We are on to The Agenda. Which first involves setting the agenda for the main meeting on Friday/Sunday.

1027: Discussion of Standing Rule Changes.

1028: Item A1 – No Candidate Regions (2 minutes of debate). Mr. Eastlake from the Nitpicking and flyspecking committee explaining. Definition of Regions of North America have been removed from the Constituion but verbage left in standing rules relating to nominations. Move to remove this passed unanimously and takes immediate effect.

1030: Kate Secor asking for explanation of motion on No Vanishing Business. Rules say that motion is submitted in advance and cannot be removed as others have planned for it and may have skipped submitting motion itself. Time for discussion reset to 3 minutes for and against.

1033: Ben Yalow speaking against, stating that this is a motion to amend and requests exact wording of motion be figured out. Suggests that ability to withdraw does not that until the deadline for submitting new business has passed.

1035: Clarification and seconding of Ben Yalow’s point.

1036: Accepting Ben Yalow’s speech as first speech in favour of amendment.

1037: Kate Secor asking question about wording -Have specified date mentioned in the rule is the standard submission date of two weeks prior.

1038: Mr Eastlike speaking against amendment. Putting in rule to allow a motion to be withdrawn even with a deadline doesn’t give opportunity for other members to submit motions similar in nature.

1039: Chair suggests referring proposal to Committee of Mr Yalow, Mr Eastlake and Ms Secor. Passed with no objection with report to come at main business meeting.

1040: Recess for 1 minute. Delicious coffee break.

1042: Corina taking over.  Hi!  Debate time streamlining debate starts.

1045: Amendment: change “may” to “shall”, unanimous consent.

1047: Proposal to produce a pre-set list of numbers of debate times.  No second, motion fails.

1048: Motion passes unanimously, takes effect immediately.

1049: Debate on proposal to eliminate wording that suggests print copies of new proposals and recognize that electronic copies exist, making existing practice into official rules.

1050: Linda Dineron speaks against this proposal as it depends on who is the secretary of business meeting.

1052: Point of information regarding technology on electronic signatures.  The exact method will be determined by the members.

1052: Hello everyone it’s Alex, I’M BACK! (Thank you so much Corina and Zalia.)

1053: “Still Ben Yalow.” This would require distribution to all members, even those without internet access, which is a thing.

1054: Kevin Standlee notes that this would impose financial burdens on the concom, so therefore the next two WorldCons will not have to comply.

1055: None in favor. Another against. Ann-Marie Rudolph, feels that the requirement and ensconcing this in the rules is more than is needed. We are already sending all material in electronic and paper format. This imposes a burden, doesn’t allow for pivoting on technological advances. Current practice is sufficient.

1057: Debate ended, call the question. The motion fails.

1058: A5, Butt Out. (No smoking, basically.) Any objections to 2 minutes debate? None.

1058: Question from Dr. Laurie – does this include e-cigarettes? No.

1059: Emotion is unanimously adopted. The business meeting will always be a non-smoking event, even if the location is a place where smoking is allowed!

1100: Moving on to resolutions. B1, extending Hugo eligibility for Kimi no Na wa. No objections to 2 minutes of debate, no debate, unanimous approval.

1101: B2 Artist Eligibility – 10 minutes of debate time adopted unanimously.

1102: There is an amendment by substitution proposed to create a Hugo Award study committee that will study the proposed revision. So we need to decide first if we’re going to do the amended version or the original version of the resolution.

1103: Please correct Kevin if you have a doctorate and he doesn’t realize it.

1103: Dr Adams has a parliamentary inquiry – is today the decision day to do committee? Yes, if that passes.

1103: This preliminary business meeting can’t send stuff on to next year’s WorldCon directly or indirectly. The committee will refer things next year to the main business meeting, which will then deal with it.

1104: Geoff Thorpe question – this is specifically for the 2018 business meeting? Kevin says the committee may recommend a constitutional amendment, but we can require the committee to do other things when the committee is made. We are creating the committee so we can give it additional tasks in the motion to refer. We cannot tie our own hands.

1105: Mr Docherty speaks in favor of substitution – this is to broaden the study committee to look at all categories, not just the artist categories. This will look at all categories and either refer to main business meeting or bring reports with regards to a comprehensive review of categories.

1107: Question for the maker. Go ahead and use some debate time against, see what happens. The previous speaker might ask you to yield some of your time. Mr Todd Dashoff actually has a parliamentary enquiry – can this committee spin off subcommittees.

1108: Kevin says yes, they can spin off subcommittees as they want unless it is specifically forbidden to them, since that’s allowed in Roberts Rules of Order.

1108: Professor Dr White on behalf of makers of original proposal to examine artist categories, thinks it’s a good idea to broaden to examine the entire structure of the Hugos in the round. Please vote for the amendment and then the resolution.

1109: No objection to adopting the substitute, so we are adopting that and now it will be before the meeting. Now we will consider the resolution, now substituted by unanimous consent.

1110: Chair suggests we reset to 8 minutes. No objection.

1110: Mr Bloom has an incidental motion. Because we cannot create a permanent committee today, suggests we postpone to tomorrow.

1111: Kevin was going to suggest that we suspend the rules so we can form the committee today and charge it with things to be reported to tomorrow. Since it seems to be people want this.

1111: The chair is a very bad chair and apologizes for going about this the wrong way. :)

1112: Any objection to adopting this resolution – there is one hand. Mr Oakes who wishes to speak against it. He proposes an amendment to limit the scope to only changing Hugo categories and not voting or nomination procedures. Since we have been working on those enough on our own.

1113: There is no objection to this amendment it seems. This would narrow the scope of the committee. But everyone seems in basic agreement that we want a review of the categories.

1114: In favor of amendment to the resolution, Mr Oakes. We have spent many years dealing with the nomination and voting process. Allowing the committee to broadly consider article three lets them mess with those, so let’s put the safety net on to restricting them specifically to the categories.

1115: Kate Secor against – appreciate the intent of the amendment, but there’s a lot of defining language (eg fan vs pro) that aren’t in 3.3, and the committee needs to be able to reach other parts of the article.

1116: No speech for the amendment. Paul Tredaway against, why bother narrowing it, because the committee has no power to implement its recommendations, just make recommendations. Give them the power.

1117: Mr Eastlake proposes to amend the amendment so it’ll encompass 3.2 and 3.3 instead of just 3.3. We suspend the rules to allow this amendment and vote it in.

1118: The resolution is amended to be 3.2 and 3.3 instead of just article 3.

1120: Back to the main motion now as amended.

1120: Mr Cronengold moves to call the question. No objection to ending the debate.

1121: Voting on the resolution itself. Only a few opposing votes. The committee will be created. Whoever is appointed as chair, they can add people to the chair at their discretion. The chairman of this meeting is not interested in discussing your membership in the committee with you, PLEASE talk to the chairmen of the committee.

1122: Dr Laurie wants to know when we can instruct the committee… when the committee has been created please.

1122: Vincent Docherty will be chairman. Other appointed members: Nicholas Whyte, Chris Barkley, Kevin Standlee, Kate Secor, Michael Lee, Catherine Duval, John Hurts conditionally if he is prepared to cooperate with the committee’s requirements.

1124: Chair asking unanimous consent to move D6, 7, and 8 to the committee just created with instruction to report back to the meeting tomorrow.  (Division of Best Novel Category, Reorganization of the Best Related Category, Best Dramatic Presentation Reorganization) Unanimous consent, we will not be taking them back up today.

1125: Unanimous consent on this.

1126: Dr Laurie asks that the committee be instructed to consult with organizations whose members will be impacted by these changes such as ASFA and SFWA.

1126: Motion is seconded, but there is not unanimous consent, so we’re going to have a debate.

1127: Dr Laurie says that the committee will be dealing with definitions, best to ask the professional organizations that represent those people.

1127: Mr Wallace parliamentary inquiry – since the committee is reporting back tomorrow, would this require them to consultation in the next 24 hours? Goodness no.

1129: Alex gives a speech in favor of consulting with organizations re: what is a professional as it is better to have more informaiton (hi this is Corina).

1131: Ben Yalow trusts Vince. (Alex back. And. Who the fuck is Vince.)

1132: Mrs Dashoff is in ASFA and would like to volunteer she is here for consult.

1132: Against: this is unduly burdensome.

1133: Me: With all due respect, who the hell is Vince?

1134: Meeting is in recess until 1145. I need some goddamn tea.

1145: And we’re back.

1146: B3 Convention Publications to Be Delivered to Members plus its attendant amendment by substitution.

1147: 20 minutes of debate time unanimously passed. Now looking at the substitution B.3.1; rather than rephrase it, chair recognizes Mr Harris to open debate.

1147: This comes up because of this con’s proposal for distribution of the souvenir books (I have no idea what this is about); the substitution is because we feel the current resolution constrains the committees too rigidly. While recognizing valid concerns, this broadens things and brings it more in line with the constitution as is. Started to get in a messy situation when there was the option to charge people; do you want paper or electronic publications was initially intended as for progress reports, not the souvenir book. There are people who are happy for electronic PRs that still want the paper souvenir book. To be financially and environmentally efficient, we need to split out the PR and souvenir book and ask individually if they want those in paper or electronic.

1151: Mr Moen speaks against the substitution; there’s nothing in this amendment that gives advance notice on how to exercise that preference. Doesn’t even specify timely.

1152: Mr Yalow – in some ways it does say that there will be timely notice. If you’re going to charge people for things, you have to specify at the time of bid filing. Also wants to address different rights for attending and supporting. The rights of attending members are defined with respect to supporting members in the constitution. You can’t give supporting members fewer rights than the attending members; the attending member is defined as supporting members plus.

1154: Mrs Dashoff has an inquiry. Having read both proposals, and sees no provision for collecting the preferences of supporting members, who are those who vote … this is a point for debate on the underlying proposal, not for this amendment.

1156: Mr Cronengold spoke and I just missed it because Kate gave me tea ILU KATE ;_; because the table was out of tea and I was just trying to survive on coffee.

1156: Dr Adams agrees main motion is overly prescriptive; this is a fast-changing area. It should be left to the committee with the guidance that’s in this amending motion.

1157: No one else wants to speak on substitute. Are we going to adopt the substitute?

1158: Yes we are.

1158: Now we’re going to debate on B.3.1.

1158: We’re going to add 12 more minutes of debate on this. Guess people are going to have a lot to say about it. (I had no idea souvenir books were such a big deal.)

1200: I’m not sure what’s going on here, sorry.

1200: It’s a motion to amend the resolution by taking the last bullet point on page 7 and inserting it into the end of the motion. This is moving something from B3 and into B.3.1. The bullet point is “The option to sign up for the printed version of either or both publications should be included on the Site Selection ballots, and through the convention’s electronic Registration process.”

1201: Mr Harris against says it’s a bit pandora’s to do this. We inherit the supporters from the previous year, and we don’t get their preferences. This gets messy because are we going to start having differential voting fees at site selection? Because we’re not collecting the extra fees then. We tend to let people get what they want and just worry about collecting the extra funds from the new members. Would rather not put this into the rules without proper consideration and probably not even then.

1203: Mrs Dashoff for and notes there are supporting members who do not have email, so contacting them to ask their preferences is impossible. You need to have that option on the site selection form so you can contact people later.

1205: Mr Walling notes that WorldCon can purchase stamps and send letters. Proposes to suspend the rules to remove the “electronic”  from “electronic registration process” since there are a lot of registrations still done via paper.

1206: Passes easily, we remove electronic and get back on track, because that does make sense!

1207: There’s only 30 seconds for left, none against. No one seems hot to trot to use that 30 seconds.

1208: IT IS TIME FOR A SERPENTINE and I don’t even know why oh god help i’m so confused

1209: oh okay this is on adding the bullet point, thanks kevin

1210: We are having serpentine teething troubles. Just figuring out the best way to count the room.

1211: The nays are going to have this one.

1212: Inquiry about the fee for the paperwork — this doesn’t sound like a parliamentary inquiry, debating the underlying subject. There’s some back and forth, no one speaking for so he can actually go with the debate and say what he’s gonna say. Instead of extra fee, propose discount for people who want electronic publications.

1215: Chair needs better wording, since the proposal is too diffuse.

1215: Mr Eastlake proposes “Worldcons may provide a refund to members who choose to receive publications electronically.”

1216: Chair thinks this needs to be referred to a committee to report back tomorrow.

1216: Nope, no committee for us, the motion fails!

1216: An alternative wording is offered by Mr Tredaway “Worldcons may offer a discount to members who choose to not receive print publications.”

1218: Ms Neal has question – does the constitution not already have a provision that allows the charging of fees? Seems the answer is no.

1219: Mr Matthews has a parliamentary inquiry – just a little clean up, sounds like, striking out some stuff for consistency. Housekeeping.

1221: Parliamentary Inquiry from Kate Secor – does the amendment as proposed conflict with 1.5.8 in the constitution. (This is the section that says you can’t sell a membership for less than the cost of a supporting membership.)

1222: Kevin: …oh boy.

1222: This means the amendment is out of order. We are back to the original un-amended resolution! Clapping abounds.

1224: Inquiry from Bruce Allbrecht (???) – is the program guide part of the publications as contemplated here. Chair rules it is. People immediately want to appeal the ruling.

1225: Mr Harris opposed to the rule. Custom and practice and practical impact say no. What do conventions historically choose to mail out. Historically, pocket programs are NOT mailed out unless there’s an excessive print run or a lot of extra money.

1226: So is the chair’s ruling right? The chair’s ruling is overturned by the meeting.

1226: And the members don’t want to extend debate, which has run out of time. And we are adopting B.3.1.

1227: One minute recess.

1229: My love is for sale and the price is tea.

1229: Kevin would like to note that this meeting is NOT the forum for complaints on how any individual WorldCon is run. Then we return to order.

1230: We’re not going to get to committee reports today. We need nominations for the Mark Protection committee next.

1231: John Coxon, Linda Deneroff, and Dave McCarty have their terms ending on the MPC, and they have agreed to be re-nominated. There was an additional nominee whose name I missed, all are accepted and nominations close.

1232: Vincent about the Hugo Committee: the YA Hugo will not be considered. People can contact him. Wants meeting at 0930 tomorrow in this room.

1232: Now we are in the debate time setting period for the constitutional amendments.

1233: None of the constitutional amendments pending ratification can be postponed indefinitely. These are ratifications from last year. (Response to PI.)

1234: Suggested debates: 10 min for best series, 4 min for amendment to it, 8 min for December Is Good Enough, 8 min for Two Years Are Enough, 20 min for Three Stage Voting, 20 min for EPH+. All accepted without objection.

1236: There is a motion to suspend regular EPH until 2018. Moved by Ben Yalow, seconded.

1237: Now it has been moved to postpone indefinitely, also seconded.

1238: Debate is on whether we will kill the motion to suspend EPH until 2018. Mr Dunn thinks EPH worked fine, why suspend it and then bring it back, just squash this bug right now.

1238: Mr Yalow points out that we specifically said we would put EPH up for debate in 2017 when we adopted it last year. We have a right to make decisions about it, and we should not quash the ability of this body to make a decision about it.

1239: Mr Cronengold says EPH is working, it’s too soon to suspend it.

1239: Question from Mrs Dashoff how many years have we had EPH? One year.

1240: Dr Adams says that we agreed we should debate EPH yearly and proposes to postpone definitely until Saturday so we can get past the Hugos this year. And postponing definitely supersedes indefinitely, which makes the indefinite postponement go POOF.

1241: It go poof.

1242: I have no freaking idea what people are arguing about now. There is shouting back and forth.

1243: Oh, apparently people are mad C6.1 is not on the slide. This is an oversight. Is there a problem with the default five minutes? No. Okay.

1244: Oh, and for C5 (EPH) as well. Is 10 minutes of debate okay since we suspended definitely? Sounds good.

1246: Oh thank god the next slide.

1246: No objections to debate time limits. I’m not going to be able to get you the numbers, but they’re reasonable. (YA Award is going to get 20 minutes of debate btw)

1248: 5 and 6 has a motion to suspend, similar to EPH, and like EPH we have postponed definitely to Saturday pending Hugo results. That gets ten minutes.

1248: Now onto the new constitutional amendments. We are running out of time y’all and might have to do a ton of stuff tomorrow. “This is what happens when you want to spend all your time debating resolutions.”

1249: Ticking right along until we get to the naming of the YA Award. There is objection to the proposed 16 minute debate. But hey Kevin’s motion is privileged so we can vote on it and move on THANK YOU.

1252: Motion to Postpone D4 definitely to Saturday as well so they can come up with a ballot and an instant runoff vote if the YA Award is adopted.

1253: Chair suggests we postpone definitely to right after the YA award and dealt with then. Chair would really prefer this, not wanting to worry about nominations until after we know if there’s even going to be an award ratified. There doesn’t seem to be an objection to handling it this way?

1256: Motion to PostPone Requiring Electronic Payments indefinitely from Ms Neal. It imposes a weird and strange burden on committees. It should be brought up next year when there’s been more time to beat it.

1257: Mr Cronengold that sounded like a speech for sending it to committee.

1257: Mr Yalow believes this is taking a short-term approach; we can kill this now, and the original maker doesn’t object to us killing it. Gives him more time to consider implications.

1258: Requiring Electronic Payments is postponed indefinitely.

1259: Committee reports are getting postponed until later. And we are adjourned.

Originally published at Alex Acks: Sound and Nerdery. You can comment here or there.

katsu: (Default)

In 2015, I was pretty clearly on the EPH train. I sure did vote for its passage. And now it’s 2016, and I’m tweeting out stuff like this:

So yeah, I am not surprised that got some confused reactions.

To be perfectly frank, this year I voted with the minority against ratification of EPH. I’m not going to claim that the passage of EPH is going to Destroy Life As We Know It And The Cats And Dogs Will Play Shuffleboard Together. I am not upset that it passed. But I’m no longer convinced that it’s the great solution I thought it was in 2015, because I’ve been doing a lot of listening and thinking.

First of all, we had some data to look at with how EPH would have processed this year and previous years.

  • It’s become very obvious that EPH isn’t the silver bullet that will slay all slating that I think a lot of us convinced ourselves it was. For the most part, it would have only made a 1-2 nominee difference in this year’s categories, and a weaker difference in 2015, which seems very counterintuitive considering the slating was much stronger last year. (This year there were actually more nominating ballots than final voting ballots, which is weird.) So yes, it’s better to have one or two “genuine” nominees in a category than none at all. But having categories that are still composed mostly of shit is really not a workable long-term solution.
  • I’m extremely concerned how EPH will affect the dramatic presentation categories, which were not included in the report on Sunday just because they were such an unholy mess to figure out. But one point we can’t ignore is that for those categories, there’s so much less on offer that people are likely to cluster around certain works in ways that will act as a natural slate—and considering that this is all about trying to stop the deliberate manipulation by the shitbag faction of the fandom, I don’t think it’s fair that the organic growth of something that would appear slate-like to the un-nuanced eye of an algorithm be treated in the same way.
  • Looking at the previous year’s data, EPH would have eliminated one of the Hugo winners from 2014. In the meeting, Dave mentioned this as something of a surprising aberration. And if it’s a thing that only happens once, good. But I find myself very concerned that similar unintended consequences could happen. The rule should really be first do no harm, here.

After talking to a lot of people and listening, I’ve also got some concerns about how EPH as a system will affect voter confidence in the process.

  • It’s still damn complicated. Yes, I’m aware that you can boil an explanation of EPH down to a single powerpoint slide. And if you grasp it well enough to explain it from that slide, good for you. I know I can’t, and I rarely have a powerpoint at hand when this comes up in conversation. I don’t think this is terribly good when it comes to trying to promote participation in the process. (Seriously, it’s hard enough to explain how the ranking works for the final voting.)
  • And considering all the points above? If I’m concerned and I’m among the group of high information voters when it comes to the mechanics, how is someone who hasn’t gotten to go through the all the presentations and question times and the like going to feel?
  • EPH is effectively a black box. It doesn’t really allow for simple hand verification. That doesn’t help efforts at transparency, which is the number one thing that encourages people to have any kind of faith in the system. And let’s not forget the conspiracy-mongering, just-repeat-something-until-it’s-true shitbag that made all this necessary. It’s not that I give a crap one about actual comic book villain Theodore Beale’s good opinion, but the less transparent something is, the easier it is to make up things about it.

I’ve become a convert to the Three Stage Voting proposal. We get told again and again that the practice has always been to leave it to the voters and have faith in them. And we’ve seen over the last two years that the voters as a whole have definite opinions about people who try to manipulate them, the system, and their beloved award. So I’m willing to have faith that the voters can decide in a semifinal if they think someone doesn’t have any business being one the final ballot with a purely up or down vote.

That said, I think we’re going to be fine. EPH has been amended so that it can be easily suspended for a year by the business meeting if there’s something going really haywire with it. We’ll see what 2017 brings.

By the way, Cheryl Morgan has written a good post that covers this and other WSFS stuff. You should read it.

Originally published at Rachael Acks: Sound and Nerdery. You can comment here or there.

katsu: (Default)

Greetings from the McDonald’s in Russell, Kansas. Writing a summary whilst eating chicken mcnuggets. As you do. Today was the final business meeting, which was one hell of a ride. You can get granular detail of The Amazing Adventures of the Committee of the Whole from the liveblog.

NOTE: I will be referring to all amendments by their working titles. If you want to know the substance of these, refer to the WSFS agenda linked to from this page. Or I have my quick and dirty readings of them here, with some helpful clarifications provided by people in the comments.

There was a lot of arcane Roberts Rules of verbal fisticuffs shit that went on today that is best left to the complete liveblog. Here’s the highlights:

  • Three Stage Voting started the day. The amended language that was sent to committee yesterday was reported back, then defeated. The amendment is voted on with its original language, passes, and will be up for ratification in Helsinki.
  • The rules are suspended with unanimous consent to re-form the YA committee with all the same people, just a different chairperson.
  • A clause is added to EPH to allow the WSFS business meetings each year to vote to suspend it, if so chosen. Due to debate time running out, we went into first a question time with Mr McCarty and Mr Quinn, and then a committee of the whole so we could discuss the issue in more detail. EPH was then ratified and will take effect next year.
    • A resolution was passed to request that the Hugo Administrators provide the meeting data next year about what the ballot would have looked like without EPH so we can compare. Note that this is a request, because we don’t actually get to tell the administrators what to do.
    • Shit got intense here, people.
  • I named my newly-evolved Electrode Mr Dashoff because I’m pretty sure the chair was making that exact face at several points.
  • 4 and 6 is amended to become 5 and 6 instead at the request of its author. This means that everyone will get to make five nominations, and six slots will be on the ballot for finalists. The new 5 and 6 then passes.
  • EPH+ passes with shocking speed considering the incredibly labyrinthine state of the rest of the morning, and will be up for ratification in Helsinki.
  • We adjourned with 12 minutes to spare, if you can believe it. I still don’t.

And that’s it for this year, guys! Tomorrow, assuming I can brain things, I will be writing a blog post to explain this tweet. My feelings on EPH have… shifted.

Previous days:

Originally published at Rachael Acks: Sound and Nerdery. You can comment here or there.

katsu: (Default)


Liveblog will begin shortly. As usual, apologies in advance for missing/misspelled names. I will do my best to keep up!

And we have tea and coffee thanks to generous donation of lots of people. YAAAAAAAY.

1009: Business meeting is in order.

1009: Starting with Three Stage Voting and the committee report to amend.

1010: Mr Rosen gives the report. The big change is that we no longer remove rejected entry from the list of finalists. If there are rejected entries above the fifth non-rejected one. People say it’s an honor just to be nominated. If a majority of fans say that something is unworthy, they can just ban it. 3SV as it stands is not a good way for the fan community to have works that only a few people like. This amendment gives minority groups the ability to get their stuff on the ballot.

1013: Question from Ari Goldstein. To clarify, if there is a longlist of 15 and the first 10 are rejected, that means we’d have a list of 15? Yes.

1013: Dr Adams speech against. It is indeed an honor to be nominated/be a finalist unless you finish under no award. We already list the top 15 plus whatever gets more than 5%. Finalists this year who ended up under No Award and were unaware of the situation.

1015: Motion from Kevin Standlee. Moves to call the question on the immediately pending amendment. No objection. The motion fails. 3SV will not be amended with this language (thank goodness).

1016: Colin Harris giving his opening remarks on 3SV, key points as yesterday. Committee of the whole is the best way to address this; willing to trust the voters. The appropriate rubric needs to be on the ballot. But if we’re not going to trust the voters, what’s the point of having the WSFS meeting? Re: gaming this year, once again we are looking toward the committee of the whole and let the voters judge what is appropriate. We chose up/down over the ranking of a semifinal; we don’t expect people to positively rank 15 items. It’s a way to let people

1019: Gary Blog: Wants to add a sunrise/sunset amendment. Chair notes there is already a sunset clause for every year between now and 2022. PoI: sunrise is meaningless too, since 3SV wouldn’t go into affect until 2018 anyway.

1021: Ben Yalow speech against. 3SV forces voters to make a political decision. We should be looking at the merits of works. I want to judge the works on their merits. There isn’t time as 3SV is constructed to make the decision anything but political. “I don’t want to play Vox Day’s game.”

1022: Cat Faber for; it’s very clear when you look at these works which of these was nominated for harassment and griefing purposes. It doesn’t take a long to judge that.

1023: Stephanie Sullivan against; it’s adding more negativity to our community. The best way to stop the gaming of the system is to be positive. Getting more people involved will fix this.

1025: David Dire-Bennett for; he likes Ben’s hope for less obvious politics and trusting people. Two cases last night where winners felt it necessary to comment on this is political.

1026: Mr Goldstein against; the more time pressure you’re going to create the voters, the fewer who will make the decisions. Won’t have time to make informed decisions.

1028: Dave McCarty for; we are already engaged in what 3SV is doing. We’re just forced to do it at voting time. The nomination process is not a majority vote. We’re taking small pluralities and picking the best; this is how the system is game. We can either adopt a democratic process, or we can let the administrators weight things, which I don’t think we want to do.

1029: Daniel Rego question; how much time is allocated for the rejection phase, and would there be a packet?

1029: Ms Fozard answer; one month period, no packet. The purpose of the semifinalist is to move forward the No Award phase and not the actual voting.

1030: Question about definition of eligible voters. Voters, so this current year’s membership. Not number of ballots returned, but total count of members. This sets a very high threshold for how many people have to reject work.

1031: Ms Nichols against; this can be gamed. Fan factionalism will be encouraged.

1033: Mr Bacon for; I’m a train driver. I understand 3SV. Understanding transparency is fundamental to every system. Last year was an incredible stress and pressure for the nominees and winners of the Hugo; he won the Hugo last year and he cried because of the stress. “I would much rather be a loser at any stage than undergo all this stress and pressure again.” He urges us to vote for 3SV.

1035: Mike Stern against; I’m a procrastinator, and this is another round of voting for which I can procrastinate. If I don’t have time to read the work, I’m not going to work.

1037: Mr Kovalcik for; does not believe that any one author is going to get the threshold needed to game this.

1038: Ms Bons against; need to look to the future of the Hugos. This sounds like collusion. How is this going to look in the future?

1040: We’re about out of debate time. Kevin Standlee moves to extend debate. Motion fails.

1040: Mike Willmouth against; needs data and encourages everyone else to do so.

1041: Mr Quinn moves to add language that it is the sense of the meeting that no work should be voted down for aesthetic reasons but this should be for winnowing off illegitimate nominations.

1042: Mr Standlee has a PI on the motion. Is this to be in the constitution or commentary? Into the constitution.

1044: There is no time for debate. There is some parliamentary shit going on.

1046: Okay, we have language now. “No qualifier should be voted down for purely aesthetic reasons.” The motion fails.

1047: Mr Rett wants to know why we are discussing this when we have data on it that hasn’t been discussed. Ruled as debate on the issue when debate time is out, he is out of order.

1049: “I would really like to vote on this.” — the chair. Who already needs a hug and some chocolate.

1049: Move to amend by Daniel Rigo, does not get seconded.

1050: Mr Kovalcik points out that this will be up for ratification in Helsinki so we’ll have another year to look at it.

1050: The question is called by multiple people, to the immense relief of the chair. We vote, ayes have it! Three Stage Voting will be passed on to Helsinki for ratification.


1059: And we are back in order.

1059: Mr Standlee immediately has a parliamentary inquiry. Pointing out that should a member get a ruling from the chair he or she disagrees with, the proper thing to do is appeal the ruling of the chair.

1101: Warren Buff moves to suspend the rules and reconsider the motion to reform the YA committee with a different head. Membership would remain the same, chair would just be different. Motion passes with 2/3 majority.

1103: Now we get to EPH. BUCKLE UP KIDS. I have a fresh cup of tea, I can handle this.

1104: Mr Quinn offers a technical fix to deal with withdrawn nominations that will make things easier for the administrators. Seconded.

1106: Dr Adams PI: is this a lesser change? Yes. Ben Yalow appeals the ruling of the chair.

1110: We are in wibbly-wobbly parliamentary-warlmintary shit here. I’m catching Pokemon, tbh, as we explain in several different ways what is going on.

1112: The chair believes this is a lesser change because he believes the body last year would have accepted it. Ben Yalow believes that this an orthogonal process.

1117: Chair’s ruling is upheld. Now we are on to trying to deal with the actual amendment. Motion to call the question. We vote to close debate on the amendment. Then we vote on the amendment. The motion is amended.

1118: Kevin Standlee moves to add a renewing sunset clause until 2022, similar to the one on 3SV. Seconded. We need to move faster than we have, but it is better to give ourselves flexibility while we test this so we can get out of it now.

1119: David Wallace against; he has a different amendment to offer instead if this one is voted down. His amendment will be that every business meeting can vote to suspend EPH for a year rather than removing it from the constitution.

1121: Kate Secor with a Parliamentary Inquiry on the amendment. If we amend it during re-ratification, does that mean it would trigger two year re-ratification? Yes.

1124: Ingvar Mattson asks if this would be a lesser change. Yes. We shall vote on Kevin Standlee’s amendment.


1130: The amendment fails by three votes. Yikes.

1131: Now we’re addressing the other amendment that was offered as an alternate to Kevin’s. Mr Wallace’s.

1133: Mr Quinn tries to move to call the question. There’s been no speech against yet. Actually, no speech for yet either, so Mr Wallace gets to finish.

1136: Speech against; it’s always going to be one year too late.

1136: Mr Kronengold calls the question because he is a hero.

1137: Mr Wallace’s amendment passes. Now FINALLY we get to EPH.

1138: Motion to end debate and call the question for EPH. Vote overrules objections. We are going to vote on this without further debate on the underlying motion.

1139: Mr McCarty explaining the report in brief with unanimous consent. Gets interrupted a bunch.

1140: Mr McCarty’s report is 51 pages long and didn’t get finished until 6 in the morning which is why there are only 5 copies of it. We get it up on the screen. Here we go.

1141: In the longlist that was released last night. There would have been no change to the ballot for novel and novella. Something in novel would have been knocked off the longlist. There were nine categories that would have had 1-2 works different. It will also change things in the longlist where no slating is present. It makes unintentional changes that do have an effect. This is an incredibly unintuitive system.

1144: We as a body natively slated the dramatic presentation categories; they have been excluded from the report.

1145: Mr Olson asks to have question time with Mr Quinn and Mr McCarty without opening to debate. Yes. It’s a suspension of the rules. (Good, this is probably way more useful than debate.)

1146: EPH would have knocked a Hugo winner from LonCon off the ballot. McCarty doubts we will see an occurrence like that again, but this is very concerning.

1147: Dave we trust you, what do you recommend? That is considered debate, which has now been cut off. Questions must be limited just to the data.

1148: Dramatic presentation results were not included, but they will still be applied. Quinn and McCarty felt that they were not germane, but it is asked, aren’t they germane if they will be applied?

1149: It was mostly because there was way too much work involved.

1149: Ms Paulk asks how much work will this place on future management? Ruled as debate since not directly about the data.

1150: A committee of the whole is moved for the next five minutes. Jared explains. “Does everyone understand that? I heard one no, but I’m not going to deal with that because I don’t want to.” Someone give this poor man a drink.

1152: “Chairman, I believe you aren’t allowed to preside at this point.” “Oh goodie!” Jared appoints Mr Illingworth to run the committee of the whole and then runs for the hills.

1153: McCarty: If you have blind faith in computers, this is fine. If you want to check anything, it’s extremely difficult. This makes me very uncomfortable as an administrator.

1153: “Okay Dave, we trust you implicitly–” “That’s a bad idea.” “–What do you think?” Dave says he doesn’t like this as an administrator at all. This is an interesting voting system, but… he’s been trying very hard to not let his personal feelings affect that.

1155: McCarty feels EPH was stronger this year against weaker slating than it was last year against stronger slating.

1157: There is some stuff here about types of voting systems. Basically, no slate can fill a category entirely.

1159: I ask how easy Dave thinks this is will be to explain to voters and what this will do to the faith of voters in the system. He says he is not a PR dude, but he thinks it is very difficult. Someone else answers that you can boil it down to one slide (We going to be showing sides to potential voters?)

1200: Dramatic presentation will be the most changed category. Erk.

1204: EPH is ratified.

1205: 5 minute break MY BLADDER THANKS YOU.

1215: Meeting is back to order. We have two items left!

1215: Mr Quinn moves for resolution to thank the Hugo Administrators and Mr McCarty for staying up so late preparing the report.

1217: Mr Kovalcik moves to require the Hugo Administrators to gives us the Hugo longlist and the data for how it would look either way. (Resolution.) Mr Dashoff “We can ask for it. We can’t tell them to do anything.”

1222: Against publishing sets of data: “If this data is published people will know who should have won.”

1224: Ms Fozard, deputy admin for EPH, has no input on this because they will implement it as directed, and feels she has no standing to offer it.

1226: Ayes have it on the resolution. Next year’s Hugo Administrators are requested to run both mechanisms and report back. On to 4 and 6.

1226: Mr Goldstein moves to amend 4 and 6 to add the same suspension clause we added to EPH. Seconded.

1227: Mr Desjardins moves to change 4 to 5 (making it 5 and 6) and the chair rules that is a lesser change. He did a quick review of the 2015 and 2016 data and it would allow more non-slate works to get on when applied with EPH. Is this a good change on its own merits when the slates go away? He believes so due to the diversification of the pool of works along all axes.

1232: Ms Hayes points out that last year’s WorldCon meeting spent a lot of time picking out very specific numbers. That’s what we should be voting on, is what the previous meeting picked.

1232: Kate Paulk asks about “four equally weighted nominations” — lesser or greater change? What about the equally weighted in terms of EPH?

1235: We vote to call the question. We are now voting to the amendment that will change 4 and 6 to 5 and 6. Results unclear, WE GETTING ANOTHER SERPENTINE.

1239: Motion passes. The amendment is now 5 and 6.

1239: 5 and 6 is ratified with no one wishing to speaking against.

1240: EPH+ next.

1241: Mr Kovalcik moves to suspend the rules and adjourn Sin Die (without EPH+ being addressed). Suspension of the rules is required because we postponed EPH+ definitely to today.

1243: Nope. We are taking up EPH+.

1244: Mr Quinn moves to add the suspension clause to EPH+ as we did with EPH and 5 and 6. Motion is withdrawn when it’s pointed out that it’s unnecessary.

1244: For EPH+, Mr Quinn says the administrators already have to do all the work, this is no extra work with extra benefit.

1245: Mr McCarty against because there is no data to show right now. Please delay until Helsinki.

1246: Warren Buff has moved to call the question. We vote to call the question.

1247: Mr Kronengold wants to make a motion, which is out of order. “I don’t have words, but no.” — Mr Dashoff.

1248: Question is called. We vote on EPH+. It passes and will be up for ratification in Helsinki.

1248: Mr Wierda, the most beautiful human being who has ever walked this earth, moves that we adjourn.


Originally published at Rachael Acks: Sound and Nerdery. You can comment here or there.

katsu: (Default)

I am so very sorry that this is so late. It has been one hell of a day today and I only just got time to sit down and write this summary. Tomorrow might be a late as well depending on how things work out. Anyway, here is the summary of today’s liveblog.

NOTE: I will be referring to all amendments by their working titles. If you want to know the substance of these, refer to the WSFS agenda linked to from this page. Or I have my quick and dirty readings of them here, with some helpful clarifications provided by people in the comments.

Today got rather fractious on a lot of fronts. I’m going to just stick with the cut and dry summary. If you want deets, go read the liveblog.

  • The most wonderful time of the year — site selection!
    • WorldCon 2018 will be in San Jose! website
    • NASFiC 2017 will be in San Juan! website
    • Both cons will have paper publications available at no extra cost, but which will require an opt-in. And both will be going with the room party model rather than the fan village model. For more details, please see the websites.
  • Mark Protection Committee special report: “Hugo Award” has now finished being registered in the EU.
  • Nominee Diversity up first. After a lot of wrangling that I cannot summarize without shaking out a mountain of salt, the amended language from the committee assigned yesterday was accepted. Nominee Diversity is then ratified and will be in the constitution.
  • Two Years Are Good Enough passes and will be up for ratification in Helsinki.
  • There was a lot of very excellent debate on the YA Award, I think. (Starts around 1144 on the liveblog.) The ayes have it, and the YA Award will be up for ratification at Helsinki. It should be noted that there are certain portions of the award (including the fact that it currently has a blank instead of a name) that will need to be amended in Helsinki. Depending upon if the chair rules that to be a minor or major change, it might take another two years for ratification rather than one year. The YA Award committee will be considering over the intervening year until Helsinki matters like the naming and will report there.
  • Three Stage Voting was sent to committee, to be reported back tomorrow, after amended language was proposed for it that was too complicated to be fully considered by the meeting at the time.
  • The three items for Retrospective Improvements were next.
    • Item #3 passed and will be sent on to Helsinki — this amendment will add a note to the Retrospective Hugos to make it explicit that they were retrospective when awarded.
    • Item #1 passed and will be sent on to Helsinki — this amendment is mostly to clean up the language of the Retrospective Hugos and allow for them to be awarded for the WWII years.
    • Item #2 FAILED. This would have added a category Retrospective Hugo, which would have effectively empowered future WorldCons to overrule the No Award  giving in a category by running a new set of nominees. The committee of the whole found this very objectionable.
  • Universal Suffrage passes and will be sent on to Helsinki for ratification.
  • Non-transferability of Voting Rights was taken up despite an attempt to adjourn the meeting because we were almost out of time.  I had to leave before directly observing how this one went, but I was told that the amendment failed after a extremely abbreviated debate.

Previous days:

Originally published at Rachael Acks: Sound and Nerdery. You can comment here or there.

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AND WE ARE LIVE. I have tea. You can all stop worrying about me now.

Same rules as usual apply. I am sorry in advance if I misspell or don’t catch a name. Newer stuff at the bottom, I’ll update about every five-ish minutes.

1002: The business meeting will be in order! Many thanks and introductions. We’re starting with site selection today.

1004: 2018 site selection question time will be dispensed with so we can move on to the agenda after that’s done. 2017’s time is constitutionally protected, but there is unanimous consent to skip over that too.

1006: And here comes the report! 1,321 valid votes. New Orleans had 594. San Jose got the other votes (didn’t catch the number). So it’s San Jose in 2018!

1007: Motion to thank the tellers, finalize the results, and destroy the ballots. Unanimous consent.

1009: Kevin Roach who has amazing hair holy crap. Thanks the New Orleans bid committee for a wonderful and friendly campaign. Many people in the New Orleans campaign will be involved in San Jose. Their website is worldcon76.org. If you find any typos and come tell them about it, they will give you a new t-shirt.

1012: Information about guests, etc. Refer to the website if you want the deets. It should be going live very soon.

1015: Note, if you want paper publications for WorldCon 76, you will need to opt-in, but it will not cost extra.

1017: Mr Lee recognized for run-down of 2017 NASFic Results. 425 votes total, San Juan wins the bid!

1019: Mr Vasquez with the presentation for San Juan. Starting with a hearty, “Buenas dias, familia!” He gets a buenas dias back. Oh I am excited about this bid! This is going to be great.

1024: PLANTAINS AND RUM god I already wanted to go, now I MUST.


1026: This will be the first major fan-run convention in San Juan. Oh my gosh.

1027: Mr McCarty comes up to say ChiCon 7 set aside $1000 for the winner of the NASFiC bid.

1027: Gary Blog asks if there will be room parties or fan village for 2017 NASFiC and 2018 San Jose. Answer is that both will have room parties.

1028: Mr Kovalcik asks when hotel reservations will be open for NASFiC — in the next few months. Charging extra for paper publications by mail? No.

1032: DetCon passes on $6000 to San Juan!

1033: Mark Protection Committee report. The registration of “Hugo Award” in the EU has now been completed.

1037: 2 minute recess.

1040: Back to order. Report from the Nitpicking and Flyspecking Committee.

1041: Mr Illingworth reports that both the major change and sunrise/sunset clauses are feasible. Question of if the sunrise/sunset is preferred. Motion is made and seconded.

1045: But this resolution wouldn’t be binding. But we pass it anyway.

1046: Committee on Nominee Diversity report. The report will come out of the 8 minutes of debate time. Dr Adams reports. They have modified the language to a lesser change that will put the amendment more in line with the original intent.

1053: The Chair rules that this is a lesser. Kate Secor appeals the ruling.

1054: Kevin Standlee suggests that the procedure for dealing with an appeal be reviewed, because it’s different from everything else we do. Let’s go down the parliamentary rabbit hole. Process: Chair gives an opening statement. Everyone else can speak for or against, but only once. Then Chair gets to give a closing statement. Then the floor gets to vote if we think the ruling is correct by majority.

1057: Debate time is running out, proposal to add 4 minutes evenly divided. Approved by 2/3 vote.

1102: Proposal to walk the mic around to those with accessibility issues. It failed.

1103: Now we’re going back and forth on the ruling.

1109: Ben Yalow points out that under current practice, we do not notify someone that if they withdrew their work, another of their works would pop on. Until they withdraw one, they don’t know.

1111: The question is called and seconded so we can get out of this. Motion is made to close debate other than 30 seconds for the Chair to make a closing statement.

1113: Now we are voting on the ruling. The ayes have it, the chair’s ruling is sustained.

1114: Ms McNeil motions to extend debate by 4 minutes, equally divided. Debate is not extended.

1115: Question is called. We will now vote on the amended language. Maybe. Maybe not.

1116: Jason Spitzer has objections/questions. Proposes rewording it again and sending it back to committee.

1117: Mr Eastlake says that if it’s not clear, it’s up for the administrators to decide from year to year.

1119: Voting on amendment from the committee now. The amendment passes. Language is accepted. AT LAST.

1119: Back to the underlying motion (Nominee Diversity). We have 15 seconds of debate left for and three minutes thirty seconds debate left against.

1121: Discussion of if finalists would be told how many nominations each of their works has. Dr Adams says that this came up in committee and a finalist could just say “please pick the two with the greatest number of nominations.” Mr Eastlake points out that this is the equivalent of the author not withdrawing anything at all.

1123: Try to call the question, but Ben Yalow points out that there has been no actual debate on the amendment. Kevin Standlee motions that we erase all debate times and give one minute to each side, to be limited to one person.

1124: Mr Eastlake as author of the amendment, for: “This is a great constitutional amendment. It does wonderful things… and boy golly everyone should vote in favor of it.” Oh, we needed this, Don. I’m afraid I didn’t catch the name of the person against.

1126: Mr Kronengold moves to amend by adding a sunrise and sunset clause. The amendment fails.

1126: “I’d now like to vote on the underlying motion. I’d really like to do that now.”

1127: The motion is passed. Nominee Diversity is ratified. We are taking a five minute break. I hope someone gives the chair a chocolate bar and a hug.

1140: The meeting is now back in order — for what purposes does the member rise? Proposal to move the YA Award up in discussion. Do we really need to debate this? NO.

1141: Ayes have it. B.2.3 then B.2.11. We will address Two Years Are Good Enough now.

1142: Warren Buff for. The number of new nominators gained from the work of tracking the N+1 memberships is relatively small, but requires a ton of administrative overhead. It’s a recent innovation that we’ve found to be impractical from an administrative standpoint.

1143: No debate against. Question is called.

1144: The ayes have it, Two Years Are Good Enough will be sent on to WorldCon 75.

1144: Now we are on to the YA Award.

1144: Katie Rask for the YA Award. The YA committee was voted in again for next year to discuss some of the remaining issues. The work this year was to addressing the feasibility of the award. Did not want to put award administration specifics into the constitution because that is not normal practice. There is a three year sunset clause for after ratification. The first provision for the insertion of the amendment provides that the naming of the award will not be considered a major change for the purposes of ratification. Next year’s committee will address the naming issue.

1147: Kate Secor, speech against. Not actually against the idea of a YA award. But objects to the specific proposal. Thinks it’s bad for YA. Creating a non-Hugo YA award would ghettoizing YA. There are a lot of authors to whom winning a Hugo-branded Hugo is very important to them.

1148: David Peterson for. They have spoken to a number of YA authors, including ones who are here. All of those authors have had the same opinion–it would be great if there was a Hugo award, but understanding the feelings of those who vote to put the Hugos on, a Campbell-like award is not a bad alternative. We have heard your objections to YA, with the Hugo being voted down again and again and again, so this is the best alternative that addresses it.

1150: Colin Harris is in favor of this proposal. Against it this year, but for one simple reason because the name is left blank. Administration is not finalized. If we pass this now, we’re going to put something into the constitution that will require major modifications next year. Against is just for that purpose.

1151: Mike Stern proposes an amendment to make it the Gernsback award. Not seconded.

1152: Chris Barkley in favor of the award. Thanks the committee members and the loyal opposition. Urges people to please vote for this, even in an incomplete form, it is the best way forward.

1153: Dr Adams says awards are currently under attack and this is not a good time to be adding a new one. (So where was this argument against Best Series?)

1154: Warren Buff asks that as we did yesterday with Best Series, let’s use the YA Award to bring the awards closer to the state of the industry.

1155: Mark Olson, parliamentary inquiry. The part that would affect the business meeting next year isn’t in the constitution and thus cannot dictate for the next business meeting. Speech against is now that, like Colin, he believes this is half baked.

1156: Cat Faber for, if there’s a major change, it’ll be a major change. If we kill the amendment and bring it back next year, it’s still going to take three years.

1157: Rene Walling would rather have a fully-baked solution.

1157: Kevin Standlee, last 20 second speech in favor. “The perfect is the enemy of the good.” If we don’t move ahead now, we may never move forward.

1158: Seth Breidbart moves to add a sunrise clause to go with the sunset.

1159: Mr Kronengold has speech against the sunrise clause. A sunrise clause is useless here. If we make a major change, it’s delayed anyway. (Yep.)

1201: Question is called — one year sunrise clause amendment. Amendment fails.

1201: Question is called on underlying motion. Ayes have it over objections, we are voting on the YA Award. The Ayes have it on the motion BY A LOT! YA AWARD IS PASSED ON TO HELSINKI!

1204: Next business: Three Stage Voting. Colin Harris speaks for. Points out that the reputation of the Hugos is on the line; methods like EPH will make sure there are a couple good finalists, but does having a couple good ones in a field of puppies really save the awards from damage? Asking that we pass this now, so that it is poised for ratification next year if needed. This is not about looking for edge cases, “oh I don’t like Dr Who.” This is about the committee as a whole standing up and saying “we don’t want this.” (Similar to the mass No Award of last year.) Understands that 3SV looks rather bad, but running it as a ranked Semi-final would be unrealistic and too much of a burden on both readers and administrators. Historically people wouldn’t put things under No Award because it wasn’t their taste. They’d just not rank them. No Award has been used when something is really not deserving, as was used last year. The intent of the makers is that nominators should vote yes on anything in 3SV unless the work shows up due to an abuse of process and is something they would be absolutely No Awarding in the future.

1207: (Colin, you may have argued me around again, you silver-tongued bastard.)

1208: Kate Paulk points out that this is a vote of all the membership. Since some of the membership are highly committed to playing the slate. So how does this prevent a group from taking membership and knocking out worthy candidates? Where are all the massive numbers of voters that we should have that would dilute the effect of a dedicated group.

1210: McCarty, 3SV does something unintended that does a great good. This crowd-sources eligibility assessment in a way that doesn’t damage the Hugo reputation.

1211: Mr Rosen proposes to amend this to keep the accept/reject voting, but rejected entries are not removed from the finalists, but the ballot is lengthened to keep through the 5th non-rejected entry and keep the rejected ones down to that number on there too. Motion is seconded.

1216: I ask if in this extended list, the rejected items would be marked. The answer is no. So the finalist list would just be unusually long and we wouldn’t know if it was because of ties or whatever.

1217: We’re trying to get the text up on the screen so we can all see what we’re debating, as the chair feels we should know what we’re talking about before we get a speech against. “The hell you say!”

1218: Mr Eastlake moves to refer to committee. He feels this is too complicated to get through today. The motion is referred to committee. Three Stage Voting will now be addressed tomorrow.

1220: We are now moving on to the three Retrospective Improvement items. Motion to reorder the items so that we start with item 3 first and then move to 1 and 2.

1222: Mr Eastlake for item number three. This would add a note for the retrospective Hugos that they are retrospective and when they were awarded.

1222: Motion to make this a resolution rather than an amendment because it’s specific instructions about administration. Do we need to debate? “NO. Good.” Motion fails.

1223: Me: We haven’t had a serpentine yet today. Immediate calls for division on that motion. But before we do the serpentine, Kevin Standlee calls for a vote for division, which requires 20%. It fails. Kevin, you beautiful killjoy.

1224: Retrospective Improvement #3 passes. On to #1.

1225: Mr Eastlake says that this cleans up the language. Also allows awarding of Hugos for during the WWII years.

1225: Speech against, because who read what was good in WWII? Most of the people who were reading during that year are dead.

1226: Speech for, “I found the retrospective Hugos this year to be much easier to nominate for than the regular Hugos this year.”

1227: Stacy Helton against, this removes the restriction so we could go back 200, 500, whatever years.

1228: For: The Hugos exist as a larger cultural heritage, so it doesn’t matter if there’s a writer alive to appreciate the award.

1229: Mark Richards against. He doesn’t want to see the retrospective Hugos entrenched forever. Right now, once we get through 75 and 100 year cycles, they’re done.

1230: Voting on motion. Ayes have it for Retrospective Improvement #1.

1230: Time for part 2. Mr Eastlake for this one. More controversial, but hey we have a small debate time! This adds the concept of a category Hugo rather than a year Hugo. If in the previous year No Award was given in a particular category, if the WorldCon believes there was something peculiar in that particular year, they may decide to run a category retrospective Hugo. (Oh Don, this is fabulous.)

1232: Don clarifies that nominations would be completely open.

1233: Ben Yalow believes that this motion is completely inappropriate. We do not judge the decisions made by the voters under any circumstances. No Award is listed just like any other candidate, and if the votes choose No Award, we should not second guess them.

1234: Priscilla Olson, in 24 years we can rerun Sasquan, this would be so cool. We’re all gonna be around in 25 years to do this.

1235: Elspeth Kovar against; no award means that category has been voted on, it cannot be voted on against.

1235: Kevin Standlee against; this is a fatally flawed proposal for administrative purposes. It would be impossible to recreate the rules used in that year.

1236: Mr Quinn against; this is a good idea, but it’s not the time to do this.

1236: We are out of time. Mr Kronengold moves to change 25 to 50 years. No second, so we’re voting.

1237: Question is called. Retrospective Improvements #2 fails.

1238: Two minute videography recess.

1239: Meeting is back to order. For the record, we will have coffee tomorrow. CHEERING ALL AROUND!

1239: We will now be considering Universal Suffrage.

1240: Ron Oakes speaking for. As he went through the constitution, he discovered that there was nothing in there to prevent a future WorldCon from violating all tradition and creating a membership class with no rights.

1241: Mr Walling against. The economics of the matter would force the committees to not create such a membership.

1241: Ms Olson is concerned the word sell because she knows this WorldCon gave away many free memberships that did include voting rights. Motion to change the word sell to provide.

1245: Elspeth Kovar, we’re not selling, we’re providing. Provide is a simple, one-word change that will clarify what is going on.

1246: Lenore Jones against, points out that the current motion doesn’t say anything about free memberships to people such as the CART operator and ASL interpretor. The amendment would force us to offer voting memberships to them.

1250: Motion fails to change sell to provide.

1252: A few more speeches for and against, my apologies that my attention is wandering a bit, because I need to zoom to a panel really soon.

1253: Universal Suffrage passes and will go on to Helsinki.

1253: We’re going to do one more item, but I can only give it two more minutes.

1254: Ben Yalow would asks that we put this off to tomorrow because he has something he needs to go to at 1300. Motion to adjourn.

1254: There is an objection. We vote. Adjourning fails. Argh.

1255: Sorry guys, I have to go. :( Not going to be able to cover the last bit.

Originally published at Rachael Acks: Sound and Nerdery. You can comment here or there.

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Summary and highlights of today’s liveblog of the main business meeting, for those who prefer their business meetings to be low-sodium and use only fake sugar.

Just remember, unlike Aaron Burr, everyone is welcome in the room where it happens.

NOTE: I will be referring to all amendments by their working titles. If you want to know the substance of these, refer to the WSFS agenda linked to from this page. Or I have my quick and dirty readings of them here, with some helpful clarifications provided by people in the comments.

  • Committee reports were given for Nitpicking and Flyspecking Committee, WorldCon Runners Guide Editorial Committee, YA Award Committee, and Best Series Hugo Committee. I’m not going to summarize the reports here, you can find them all in the agenda. But I would particularly encourage you to read the YA Award report, which starts on page 37 of the pdf.
  • Financial reports accepted for previous WorldCons. ChiCon 7 is finally done, they have left the building, buh-bye!
  • Business passed on from previous WorldCons, excepting the items definitely postponed until Sunday (EPH, 4 and 6)
    • Best Fancast is re-ratified as a category, so it’s here to stay!
    • The Five Percent Solution passes and goes into the constitution, so yay no more 5% threshold for short story! (One argument for this measure provided by actual statistician Mr Quinn.) There was a minor change made to the language of this amendment that removed a section that didn’t actually have anything to do with nominating thresholds and got put in by mistake, giving us all a lesson on the dangers of global find and replace.
    • Nominee Diversity is referred temporarily to committee, to be reported back tomorrow. The committee will address some questions about how it should be dealt with if someone gets more than two nominations in a category and has to withdraw the extra works from consideration.
    • Electronic Signature passes.
  • There was a major parliamentary kerfuffle about if it would be possible to pass something this year and then delay the ratification an additional year (so it would be set to be ratified in 2018 rather than 2017). That got referred to committee as well, because a nitpicker and flyspecker’s work is never done.
  • New business for this WorldCon:
    • The committee’s modified language for Best Series was accepted. A sunset clause was added, set to expire in 2021. Best Series then gets first passage and will be up for ratification in Helsinki.
    • December Is Good Enough receives first passage and will be up for ratification in Helsinki.
    • Unanimous consent given to take up Defining North America since it was likely to be a less contentious item and we were running short on time. The measure then received first passage and will be up for ratification in Helsinki.

We got a lot done, as you can see! Tomorrow we’ll be going through site selection, and then more of the new business.

Previous days:

Preliminary meeting liveblog | summary

Originally published at Rachael Acks: Sound and Nerdery. You can comment here or there.

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Many thanks to Eric, for letting me use his phone hotspot while I’m waiting for my friend with the hotspot to arrive.

Usual rules apply; I apologize in advance for all my misspellings. Do not be surprised if personal opinions show up. I will be summarizing at times. Newest items will be at the bottom of the post, so it’s all in chronological order. I’ll be updating every five minutes or so.

Just waiting for the meeting to be called to order.

1009: The business meeting is called to order. Introductions.

1011: Rules are suspended to elect the members to the Mark Protection Committee since the number of nominees equal the numbers of empty spots.

1012: Nitpicking and Flyspecking Committee report. Proposed the amendment to define North America for the purposes of NASFIC that is before us today. No more nitpicking for now, perhaps in future, less contentious years.

1013: WorldCon Runners Guide Editorial Committee. Catastrophic failure on the conrunner website; unable to recover from backup. Mike had PDFs of the site and they have extracted data from those and are reloading.

1015: Katie Rask gives YA committee report. Majority consensus of the previous year’s committee, YA was not feasible based on wordcount (which defines all other categories). This year was focused on considering a Campbell-like award for Young Adult. A Hugo in general addresses a work. A Campbell addresses an author. A YA award would address an age group. Basics of what a YA award would look like is in exhibit 2. (Exhibit 1 is comparison of the Hugo and Campbell.) YA award would be a WorldCon-sponsored award; each Hugo Administration committee is in charge of administering YA Award as with Campbell. Dual eligibility allowed.

1019: (YA Award report continued) Some issues need to be addressed by third committee, particularly naming of award and what the award would look like. Asks that committee is extended to address these issues. A Campbell-like award does solve problems that have come up repeatedly, particularly the definitional issue, and how it would be categorized. Last year had a discussion of how YA is defined. A strong definition of YA is probably not a good idea because trends change; best to leave it to the voters. If it’s not a Hugo, we don’t have the definition problem that has loomed so hard in the past. There is a huge variety of YA wordcounts; this is not a good definition.

1023: (YA Award report continued) Talked to a number of YA authors about Campbell-like award, got a lot of positive feedback. The award would name and honor (at discretion of the meeting) up to five books a year.

1025: Question from Mr Blog. Any feelers as to long-term sponsorships?

1025: Rask–we spoke to the Hugo Committee to see if a sponsor was even necessary. The Campbell has one due to tradition; grandfathered in. Because the YA Award would be added, it would not need to be sponsored. Not included in report since this would be best addressed in the following year’s committee. All expenses associated with this award are essentially the same as you get with a Hugo Award.

1027: Question from Ben Yalow. Has there been any kind of survey of the potential nominating pool? How many people who nominate for the Hugos actually read YA and can competently address this?

1027: Rask gave this in last year’s report. Numbers from LonCon in the YA track, number of panels, authors participating, author interest. The numbers were very large; most YA panels were standing room only. Numbers are very good.

1029: No objection to re-appointing committee for this year.

1030: Best Series Hugo Committee report, given by Warren Buff. Report is on page 67, appendix two. Appendix one is MIA.

1031: Buff–committee report was put online in July. Committee feels that industry has gone from standalone novels to long series over the years. A lot of in-series novels get nominated but don’t win. It would be good for the health of the Hugo novel category. Renewed eligibility because when a work is significantly expanded to effectively be a new work, it gets renewed eligibility. Committee feels that when a series is expanded, it becomes a new work.

1033: No questions for the committee.

1033: WorldCon committee reports. Are there any questions for any of the committees.

1034: Lenore Jones–what is the distinction between the LoneStarCon Reports?

1035: Ben Yalow is not an official representative of LSC. There are two distinct reports, one for LSC and one for Alamo. If any funds are turned over to a successor organization, that successor organization is bound by the funding report rules. Funds were turned over to Alamo, so they decided they were close enough to be bound by the reporting.

1036: Terry Neil commends the granularity of Sasquan’s report.

1037: Geri Sullivan notes that there is money in two reports money is given to the video archaeology project. Thanks all contributors who have given money to this project. More info in the fan lounge.

1038: Dave McCarty this is the final report for ChiCon, the money is gone, as soon as they file the papers with Illinois the corporation is no more, bye bye!

1039: Business passed on commences. First order of business is passed on from ChiCon–Best Fancast. (McCarty, from back: “Hello!”)

1039: Kate Secor for. This category has a sufficient diversity of nominees, and also the podcasts act as great advertisement for the Hugos.

1040: Question called. Ayes have it, Best Fancast is re-ratified and remains.

1040: Bringing up The Five Percent Solution. This will strike the 5% reporting requirements for short story. Kevin Standlee has a modification. Kevin wishes to admit to the body that he made a mistake. He got rid of every reference to 5%, a few of which have nothing to do with the purpose, which is to remove the threshold for being a finalist. He wants to strike the section that has nothing to do with the threshold, is seconded.

1043: Parliamentary Inquiry–if we modify this, will we have to re-ratify? Dashoff: this is a lesser change, so it does not require ratification next year if we pass it this year.

1044: Stephanie Sullivan wanted to clarify that final numbers will still be reported. Yes.

1045: No one wants to speak against Kevin’s amendments. Question is called, his modification passes.

1046: Mr Desjardins speaking for the 5% Solution. Points out that the vote gets divided too many ways for short story and in many years we have had less than a full short list for the category. The magazine market is larger and much more fragmented now. It’s much harder for any one work to appear on 5% of the ballot. Times have changed. The rule is no longer doing any good.

1047: Mr Yalow against the motion. When you get down to that level, there’s a lot of noise and not a lot of signal. The difference between fifth and sixth place is close enough to a random number that he’s not convinced that it’s real signal and not statistical fluctuations.

1049: Mr Quinn in favor. STATISTICIAN IN THE HOUSE BOOYAH. If the difference between 5th and 6th place is a statistical fluctuation, the difference between 5% and 6% might be a fluctuation too. The way we make sure it’s not a statistical fluctuation is the second round of voting on the finalists.

1050: Daniel Rico if no one is bothering to nominate it, it might not be Hugo-worthy.

1051: Chris Gerrib it’s not that there are too few voters; it’s that we’re spreading 2000 votes over a lot of nominations.

1052: Kate Secor (who does not understand statistics, per herself) motions to add a three year sunset clause. This is a lesser change that can be allowed.

1053: Dr Adams points out we have lots of data already and we don’t need a sunset clause.

1053: Kevin Standlee moves to end the debate and call the question. No objection.

1053: We will vote on adding a sunset clause first. Motion fails, no sunset clause.

1054: Now we vote on The 5% Solution. Motion passes, we get rid of the 5% threshold!

1054: On to Multiple Nominations. This will explicitly codify that you cannot be nominated in multiple categories for the same work.

1055: No one wants to speak against. Question called. Motion is ratified.

1056: Nominee Diversity. Mr Eastlake as maker of motion and speaks first. He made a study where duplicates (multiple episodes in same series, etc) have happened throughout Hugo Awards, but this has become increasingly common over the last 15 years. This really crowds out options and limits the choices of the voters. This would limit the slots on the ballot to no more than two per category.

1057: Question from Dr Adams. How will this actually be implemented? Will you be contacting people and saying “you have four finalists, you can only have two, would you like to withdraw two of them?”

1058: Eastlake–this sounds how it would probably be administered; this will be up to the particular administrators of the awards that year. This would leave the decision of what to be on the ballot to the author deciding what is most representative for them.

1059: Mr Matthews asks if there will be instructions on the ballot saying you’re not allowed to nominate more.

1059: Answer is no. People can still nominate as much as they want, though the provisions will be in the packet.

1100: Follow-up would this be up to the creator, or up to who has the most nominations?

1100: Answer is that this would be up to the administrators(?)

1101: Dr Adams is not satisfied with the answers given. Proposes to give to a committee that will report back tomorrow to clarify these things with minor change-type language.

1102: Seconded.

1102: Inquiry–section 3.2.5 is mentioned, what does it say? This is the rule allowing authors to withdraw a work if they feel it is not representative.

1104: Mr Olson against, doesn’t want to write too many of the Hugo administration rules into the constitution. If it is necessary, it wouldn’t be a lesser change.

(There’s some more back and forth, none of the arguments particularly stand out as new.)

1108: Colin Harris points out that every year, nominees are allowed to withdraw more broadly defined than in 3.2.5.

1111: Debate time has run out with regards to referring to committee.

1112: Ben Yalow moves to extend debate time by two minutes. Does not pass vote; debate is not extended.

1113: Vote on if to send to committee. It’s close. BUCKLE UP KIDS, IT’S TIME FOR A SERPENTINE.

1117: Motion to refer to committee passes. Dr Adams will chair the committee.

1118: Ten minute recess.

1133: Meeting called back to order.

1133: Next item is Electronic Signatures.

1134: Speech for Electronic Signatures from Terry Neil. Recommends that both electronic and paper ballots be available. Recommends particularly because international WorldCons are coming up.

1135: Joanie Brill Dashoff site selection administrator for last year. They didn’t accept adobe signatures last year due to a glitch.

1136: Kate Secor for. Enormous desire from the membership for us to do this. “Why can’t I do this online like everything else?” This motion doesn’t force us to do it right away; requires agreement of all parties. But we can tell membership that we are at least working on it.

1137: Geri Sullivan against. Says this would put the pressure from site selection and onto the bid managers.

1140: Cliff against; concerned we will get a flood of votes from people who don’t know anything about the bids. Brings up specter of ballot box stuffing by bids.

1140: For: A voting flood is already possible. Electronic signing might be required in the future. And everyone wants it. Being progressive as an organization is kind of what we do.

1143: Against: electronic signatures will destroy friendships(?). (Sounded like for to me, but hey.)

1143: For: the data privacy concerns are overrated; personal information can be separated out.

1144: Kent Bloom against. The privacy concerns are real. The idea that everyone can agree on my behalf is a false idea. My rights as a member are not having my vote available for anyone else to see.

1145: Seth Breidbart for; as a professional in the field, there are several ways that privacy can be protected.

1147: Proposal to extend debate. It fails. Question is put to the floor.

1147: Motion is ratified! Electronic Signature passes.

1148: The other business passed on has been postponed definitely to Sunday, so we are on to new business.

1148: Dr Adams asks if there’s a way to delay ratification on items not next year but until the year after.

1150: The answer would be no.

1150: Kronengold asks if we can add a major change that could be removed in the next year as a minor change functionally do what we want. Yes.

1151: We’re getting into some parliamentary shit here.

1152: Ben Yalow is the only person I know who can make an entire room laugh with parliamentary procedure. I cannot explain the joke. You had to be here.

1154: “Is there any objection to that resolution?” “Yeah, because I don’t understand it.”

1157: We’re having some delayed ratification problems here, folks.

1158: “Sunrise, sunset clause.” “I made that proposal on the SMOFs mailing list and was rightly shot down as stupid parliamentary gamesmanship.”

1158: We’re referring this ????? delayed ratification thing to nitpicking and flyspecking committee. Maybe? We’re trying.

1159: Kate Secor asks that the committee meeting be open. Nitpicking and Flyspecking FOR EVERYONE.

1200: Objection from Ms Hayes because she would like her husband for at least some of the convention. :)

1201: Motion to refer to committee passes. Those opposed are mostly the members of the Nitpicking and Flyspecking committee.

1203: Next up is Best Series.

1204: Colin Harris on our committee report for yesterday. We restricted ourselves to the re-eligibility criteria. Considered a number of options on merit: 1) Everyone can be permanently eligible with new material, 2) Exclude winners but allow those who had been nominated and lost, 3) Exclude all nominees. After some discussion we got rid of #3 unanimously because it would cause too much churn, and agreed with the original committee on #1. Winners should be perpetually excluded from nomination even if new work is added. Here is the language we propose to clear up things to be more understandable.

1213: Amendment by substitution for our modified language from committee. Ayes have it. Motion has now been amended.

1213: Now let’s actually debate Best Series.

1213: Warren Buff in favor. Commends the committee for improving their language. :) This is an attempt to bring our awards in line with the state of publishing as it has been in the last few decades. Passing this will help improve the best novel category as well as reflect the state of the art.

1216: Point of information from John Dawson, who was on the committee. This does not clearly explain what would happen if an author writes multiple series in the same universe, etc.

1216: Warren Buff says that multiple series would be eligible.

1217: Kate Secor against. We know there are going to be frequent fliers. Concerned this isn’t going to be great for the Hugos with a lack of variation. Also places a massive burden on the voters.

1219: PRK speech in favor. Juror in Australian award that recognizes series. For them, the series had to be finished. Additional works became a new series. Their best series demonstrated a significant difference between best novel and best series.

1220: Question as to how series will be defined.

1221: Chris Gerrib, the answer is, you all get to figure it out. Leave it up to the voters.

1224: Mr Bloom, a speech against in the form of a question. What if series-ception happens? We are getting into some deep stuff here.

1225: Colin Harris — if we vote for this, we are going to accept the judgment of the voters. There is no way to precisely legislate the definition of the series and it’s against the spirit of how we do things in general.

1226: Mr Eastlake points out that per the constitution, all of this is ultimately up to the Hugo Administrators.

1226: Terry Neil moves to add a sunset clause. I second. Amendment passes. There is a sunset clause set to expire on 2021.

1228: Question of moving the second clause from Mr Ilingsworth. Colin Harris points out that we split it up like we did to make it easier to read, but we want to keep all the text together.

1229: Back to the matter at hand.

1230: Best Series is passes at first passage. It will be on the agenda at Helsinki.

1230: Five minute recess.

1236: Back to order, we are starting with December Is Good Enough.

1237: This is a cutoff for which members can nominate, not which works can be nominated. Further clarification on what this all means.

1239: Question gets rapidly called by 2/3 vote.

1239: December Is Good Enough receives first passage.

1239: Unanimous consent for taking up Defining North America now. Insert your continental drift joke here. (Come on people, plate tectonics. We’re not in the 80s any more.)

1241: Kevin Standlee points out that the current definition of North America would require that we had a NASFIC if WorldCon took place in Hawaii.

1242: Question from Mr Matthews.

1243: Question as to why Alaska, Hawaii, and DC? Because something to do with parliamentary stuff. Kevin explained it, I promise.

1245: Warren Buff against the motion. Does away with too much fannish silliness. He opposes this motion because he wants us to keep being silly. :)

1245: Jason Spitzer against, why is this necessary? If we want to hold a NASFIC in a year WorldCon is in Hawaii, why not.

1246: Put question to the floor. The ayes have it. Defining North America passes on to next year.

1247: Motion to adjourn. The ASL interpreter and CART person get a round of applause.

1248: Reminder that site selection closes at 6 today. Informal EPH and EPH+ Q&A immediately after this meeting.

1248: We stand adjourned for the day.

Summary to follow, but I need lunch!

Originally published at Rachael Acks: Sound and Nerdery. You can comment here or there.

katsu: (Default)

For those to whom the liveblog is too long or too confusing, I shall summarize.

The Preliminary business meeting is for setting the agenda for the main business meetings on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. I will be referring to all amendments by their working titles. If you want to know the substance of these, refer to the WSFS agenda linked to from this page. Or I have my quick and dirty readings of them here, with some helpful clarifications provided by people in the comments.


  • All amendments from the 2015 business meetings were successfully put on the agenda with debate times set.
  • EPH and 4 and 6 were both postponed definitely to the Sunday meeting, so that they could be considered in light of the results of this year’s Hugos. We’ve been promised a report particularly on how EPH would have affected the nomination outcomes for the last five years at Sunday’s meeting. After much back and forth, EPH will be considered before 4 and 6 because if the former passes, the latter should be considered for modification.
  • There will be an informal discussion about EPH after the meeting tomorrow.
  •  Best Series will be debated in the general meetings, with a report from a committee (which I was on) with some recommendations to modifying the language. (Spoiler here: In committee, Colin Harris eloquently talked me down from what I was trying to do, but we did come up with some necessary clarifications.)
  • The proposed amendment to turn Two Years Is Enough into This Year’s Hugos, This Year’s Nominators was defeated. Two Years Is Enough (which will remove the current right of year N+1’s WorldCon attendees to nominate for the Hugo) will be considered in the main business meeting.
  • Additional Finalists is postponed indefinitely and will not be considered this year.
  • December Is Good EnoughThree Stage VotingEPH+Retrospective ImprovementsUniversal SuffrageNon-transferability of Voting Rights, and Young Adult Award will all be considered during the main business meeting. (YA Award with the rather surprising statement from Mr McCarty that though he has thoroughly objected to YA proposals in the past, he feels that this one deserves to be debated.)
  • EPH+ will be considered on Sunday after EPH due to definite postponement.
  • Retrospective Improvements has been split into three separate parts, each of which will be debated and voted on in the main business meeting.
  • No change to the Mark Protection Committee; all retiring members are nominated again.

If you have any questions/corrections, please feel free to leave a comment, I promise that I do go through and deal with the moderation queue.

Originally published at Rachael Acks: Sound and Nerdery. You can comment here or there.

katsu: (Default)


Thanks to Corina Stark for hotspotting her phone so I can use her data for this liveblog.

Rules as usual: I will be updating this post every few minutes once the meeting starts. Newest things will be at the bottom so this will eventually be chronological. Don’t be surprised if I interject opinions occasionally. There may be some misspelled or missing names as I go along, so this post may be corrected later. Apologies in advance if I miss your name the first go round!

The agenda is rather… robust this year. 69 pages. Already hearing a lot of comments about that.

We’ll be starting… soon.


1009: Just going over parliamentary procedure for the meeting via a short video…

1016: Jared Dashoff calls the meeting to order and introduces everyone. Tim Illingworth, Linda Deneroff, Donald Eastlake, Lisa Hertel. Reminder that the meetings will be recorded and then loaded to youtube as quickly as possible.

1018: Point of parliamentary code, clarification on how we will be doing serpentines if necessary.

1019: Reminder today is the preliminary business meeting, going over what the next several meetings will be. If we are not done with the agenda on Sunday. we will be in this room UNTIL WE ARE DONE. Today we will be setting debate time for all motions. Any amendments are in order on new items, no amendments in this meeting for items already passed.

1021: We can vote on any resolutions coming out of committee today. Any motions coming from a committee report have to be voted on at the main business meeting. Reminder: we can postpone indefinitely today or object to consideration.

1022: On to business passed on.

1023: Kevin Standlee question of privilege: requests that all questions be spoken or repeated into the mic for recording purposes.

1023: Business passed on. Eastlake reminding us that there is a time dilation issue, so propose brief debate times.

1024: Yes, we can reorder items today.

1026: What if it’s a tie? Jared: Then I get to vote.

1027: Best Fancast. No objection to six minutes of debate.

1027: The 5% Solution. 10 minutes suggested. 4 minutes proposed and seconded. 6 proposed and seconded.

1028: Six minutes debate set for 5% solution.

1029: Kevin Standlee serves warning that he is planning to amend the 5% solution.

1029: 10 minutes suggested for Multiple Nominations. Several other times suggested.

1030: Time set at 8 minutes.

1031: Nominee Diversity suggested at 10 minutes. Time set at 8 minutes.

1032: Josh Kronengold moves to postpone Nominee Diversity definitely until after EPH is voted on. There is no objection to moving it until after EPH.

Everyone is being so agreeable so far.

1033: Electronic Signature has a 12 minute suggested debate time. Multiple objections.

1034: Someone suggested 20 minutes. Everyone else is opposed.

1035: Debate for Electronic Signature set at 10 minutes.

1035: Cliff Dun moves to postpone EPH definitely until after 4 and 6. Multiple objections. Cliff argues that 4 and 6 is the least destructive proposal and should be considered first.

1036: Mr Dejarden is one of the makers of 4 and 6 and argues that the effect cannot be considered until we know if EPH will be in or not. If EPH passes, he will be moving to amend his own proposal.

1037: Jason Spitzer seconds the least destructive point. Also points out that some amendments are much more difficult to implement. It would be a waste of our time to consider more complicated amendments when we could just pass 4 and 6 and end it there.

1039: Motion to postpone EPH definitely until after 4 and 6. Motion does not pass. Order remains the same.

1040: 20 minutes of debate time suggested for EPH. Multiple objections. Someone suggests 30. Oh sweet Jesus.

1041: Time set at 20 minutes anyway.

1041: David McCarty moves to locate 4 and 6, EPH, and Nominee Diversity to the Sunday meeting so we can see the Hugo data. They have a report ready for us (which they presumably can’t share til after the ceremony). EPH is being tested this year; the data is being run both ways.

1044: Gary Rob questions why Nominee Diversity is related to EPH and 4 and 6.

1044: They’re not actually related, but Nominee Diversity has already been postponed definitely until after EPH, so perforce it must move. Anyway, we have five data sets of EPH processed data we can look at on Sunday.

1045: Rick Kovalcik against: we have enough data now to shoot down claims.

1049: Call the question for postponing definitely. Objection because someone has remarks against. Some debate on how this works, moving to vote on the question.

1051: Motion to postpone definitely until Sunday passes. We’ll be looking at 4 and 6, EPH, and Nominee Diversity on Sunday.

(Missed a little bit of stuff here because I had to take a phone call.)

1057: Kate Secor argues that Nominee Diversity is an issue of itself and should be debated on its own merits rather than linked to other amendments that have no direct relation.

1058: I have no idea what just happened. We’re getting into the parliamentary stuff here, baby.

1059: Mr Bloom votes to suspend the rules so we can get ourselves out of this tangle and vote to just move Nominee Diversity back.

1100: We are now going to vote to move it back. Motion passes. Nominee Diversity is no longer on Sunday.

1101: Now we have to set debate time to 4 and 6. Much objection. Such suggestions. Wow.

1103: 10 minutes of debate set for 4 and 6.

1103: Now for the new items.

1105: Meeting back in order after a brief recess.

1106: Best Series. Motion to amend by Mr Kronengold. He wants to add a Best Epic category and some other portions.

1107: Mr Buff says this is the best compromise they were able to work out.

1107: PoI from Ms Seacourt question if this creates two new categories?

1108: Mr Kronengold says this would not create a second category, but would open it up for works in other categories that get substantially longer.

1109: Amendment fails.

1110: I object to the re-eligibility portion of the amendment and move to remove that.

1111: Someone from the committee speaks for.

1112: Kate Secor shares my concerns.

1114: Speech against. Mr Kronengold points out that he wants to strike the thing that prevents the same work from being nominated again.

1115: Question of intent. If we strike this part, will that mean the series can’t be eligible again or will be every year.

1116: Striking this would make it eligible endlessly? I would hope not.

1117: Mr Olson moves to return this to committee and return tomorrow with an up or down motion showing different consequences. Colin Harris will be chairing committee. (I’m going to try to get on that.)

1118: Now we’re actually going to set debate time.

1119: Ben Yalow brings up that the motion has been referred to committee and is no longer under the meeting’s control. Eastlake points out that we are still in control of our own agenda.

1120: How can we set debate time if we don’t know what the actual item will be?

1121: Motion to set debate time independently for the amendment and the motion.

1122: Colin Harris plans to come back with something simple and concise to clear up the intent of the motion.

1124: Setting debate time for the main motion. 10 minutes set.

1126: Setting debate time on my amendment. 6 minutes.

1127: Move to postpone Best Series and amendment definitely to after EPH. On Sunday. (WHY?) Points out that series are particularly subject to slate voting; he cannot vote well without knowing how the slate voting has been addressed.

1128: Rick Kovalcik says there should be as little as possible to do on Sunday. Motion to call the question.

1129: Motion fails. Best Series stays put.

1130: 10 minute recess.

1142: Meeting called back to order. Committee about series will meet after this meeting. Informal discussion of EPH, etc, will occur after the meeting tomorrow

1144: December Is Good Enough.

1144: Motion to suspend the rules to limit debate time per person so if there is 10 minutes, you only get one minute of speaking time. Etc.

1145: Ben Yalow points out that motions are sometimes complex, “I’d rather hear a really good two minute speech than a bunch of really lousy 30 second speeches.”

1146: Kate Secor points out that a motion to extend the entire debate can be made.

1147: Gary Blog wants to hear more opinions rather than just one person dominating the debate time.

1148: Warren Buff moves to amend so that debate time is automatically extended by 30 seconds until five people get a chance to speak.

1149: Kronengold moves to amend so that if fewer than five have spoken on a given side, the voting threshold to extending debate drops to 50% rather than 2/3.

1151: Ben Yalow brings up germaneness. Jared Dashoff rules it is germane.

1151: Question is called. Motion fails.

1153: Okay, now we’re voting on the limitation of debate times per person. This motion fails as well.

1154: Back to December Is Good Enough. Time set at 8 minutes.

1155: Two Years Are Good Enough. 10 minutes debate time set.

1157: This Year’s Hugos, This Year’s Nominators. Ben Yalow speaks for it.

1158: Colin Harris is against. The future year is a moving target with new members being added all the time. The future voters only add a few hundred to an already huge pool. Makes things more game-able(?). Believes it exposes the awards to being much more easily gamed in smaller years.

1201: Mr Kovalcik is for. This would have caused more supporting member income for MidAmeriCon.

1204: I speak against. I’m interested in more participation.

1204: Kate Secor for. Very valid point that it allows nomination, not voting.

1205: Speech against; point that this cuts off people who join after the deadline and they get no shot at nominating ever even if they bought the full membership.

1206: Warren Buff for; Getting people to join early and encouraging that is very good for the planning of the WorldCons.

1207: Adrian Foster against; the reason we started the two year process is because of the cut-off date. If we take the previous years nominators off, we should remove the cut-off date as well.

1208: Ms Rudolph acknowledges that the nomination process is broken/has some serious deficits. This will help focus the nominations on the people who care the most about the outcome of the Hugos. This only impacts nominations, not voting. This will discourage people who are not invested in the process.

1211: Ms Hayes against. Anyone who joined the day of should get something for that membership. (They didn’t get a chance to nominate/vote this year, so…)

1212: Mr Kovalcik when we went from one year to two years, it was hard to buy a membership. It’s easier to buy a membership now.

1213: Debate time has expired. Vote on the amendment by substitution. The amendment fails. This Year’s Awards, This Year’s Nominators FAILS. So we will be considering “Two Years Are Enough” rather than the stricter version.

1216: Three Stage Voting comes up. There is a seconded motion to postpone indefinitely.

1217: Mr Blog really LOATHES this amendment. Points out this will just make Approval Wars basically. Additional stage of voting gives the administrators even more to do.

1218: Colin Harris asks that this at least gets open debate.

1219: Mr Kronengold moves to call the questions. Seconded. Question is called.

1222: Motion to propose indefinitely fails. Three Stage Voting stays on the agenda.

1224: Mark Protection committee nominations. Three retiring members re-nominated.

1228: Moving on to Additional Finalists. Motion to propose indefinitely. There’s some scrambling.

1230: Now a speech against Additional Finalists as anti-democratic.

1231: Ms Hayes as maker of motion. It has numerous flaws. It deserves the chance to at least be debated.

1231: Kate Secor in favor of postponement. This is completely antithetical to the spirit of the Hugos and does not even deserve open debate.

1232: Question of postponing Additional Finalists indefinitely is called. Hands are unclear. IT’S SERPENTINE TIME, KIDS. BUCKLE UP.

1236: 36 Against to 81 For. Additional Finalists is postponed indefinitely.

1236: EPH+ is next. Mr Blog moves that EPH+ is moved definitely to be after EPH and 4 and 6 on Sunday.

1238: Mr Blog declines to give a speech in favor of his motion. Ms Hayes against. Because if EPH+ is better than EPH, let’s just talk about that first.

1239: Mr Quinn even if we pass EPH+, for this year EPH still matters.

1239: Question is called. Mr Dashoff reminds us that the way to show there is no objection is with silence.

1240: Motion passes. EPH+ will be on Sunday. Now time is set for debate. 16 minutes of debate time set.

1242: Defining North America. 2 minutes of debate time!

1243: Retrospective Improvements. Ben Yalow stands to move that the question be divided. He believes that 3.13.1 and 3.13.2 are sufficiently different that they should be divided. Seconded.

1248: Parliamentary scrambling, the conclusion is this is not debatable so let’s vote. The division passes.

1249: Kevin Standlee proposes dividing so it’s three parts and now two. He asks unanimous consent. Mr Buff objects. “I tried!” –Standlee. Then we devote anyway and the division goes through.

1250: Dashoff proposes six minutes per. Objection. Dashoff says debate time will be all three at once though. Four minutes.

1251: Universal Suffrage. Six minutes is adopted with no objection.

1251: Non-transferability of Voting Rights. Eight minutes adopted with no objection.

1251: Young Adult Award. Mr Blog moves to postpone indefinitely. Seconded.

1252: Mr McCarty says he has been opposed to YA awards in the past, but he thinks this should be debated. Applause for him.

1253: Question is called. Motion fails. YA is not postponed. We set debate time now. 14 minutes set.

1254: Motion to adjourn. Seconded. Meeting comes in just under the wire.

I’ll write a summary of this a bit later, time for my committee meeting. Thanks for following!

Originally published at Rachael Acks: Sound and Nerdery. You can comment here or there.

katsu: (Default)

I hope you kids are warming up your serpentine muscles AW YISS.

@ForestofGlory on Twitter asked me what I thought about a few of the items on the WSFS agenda this year, and I realized that due diligence means I really ought to look at all the upcoming items before I get to the meeting so I can start thinking about them. There are some big items coming up, such as changes to membership rights–if you are at WorldCon, it’s extremely important for you to attend the business meetings if you care about how the con is run.

For information on where the meetings will be held and the schedule, click this helpful link.

So let’s take a look at the WSFS agenda for this year! I’ll try to keep each of these brief.

Under Business Passed On–this means something we approved at a previous WSFS business meeting, which now must be ratified to go into the constitution.

A1 – Best Fancast: Do we want to keep best fancast? Selfishly, as someone on a podcast, I’m inclined to like this category.

A2 – The Five Percent Solution: This was the amendment to get rid of the motherfucking 5% nomination requirement for the short story category that’s prevented us from having a full category in years past. I want this thing to pass so hard I can taste it.

A3 – Multiple Nominations: Prevents a work from appearing in multiple categories. I kind of felt it was fixing a problem that didn’t really exist before, but I also don’t have a problem with it. It seems like generally good practice.

A4 – Nominee Diversity: This keeps a single author or single television show from dominating an entire category. I’m rather in favor of this because I’ve found the best dramatic short form category effectively being “Best Doctor Who” incredibly annoying in the past–and not reflective of the breadth of the options we have as scifi fans these days. Voted for it before, am likely to vote for it again unless someone can give me a very compelling argument otherwise.

A5 – Electronic Signature: Will allow electronic signature at the discretion of the administering WorldCon for site bid ballots. I get the impression this would help with the administration, but more importantly, it should allow more people to vote in site selection. I think this is incredibly important, particularly since I’ve been a strong proponent of putting the World back into WorldCon and seeing more non-US cons, even if that means I don’t get to attend as often.

A7 – E Pluribus Hugo: One of the more bitterly contested items from last year’s agenda, this was intended to help ameliorate the rabid puppy bullshit that keeps occurring because a man whose initials are the same as that of a nasty lung disease just needs to get his ego stroked. Unfortunately, it looks like this statistical system wouldn’t really have made that much of a difference in the category shake-out this year, so I’m not sure if we should be ratifying something that doesn’t work properly or well. I’m figuring the EPH folks will have a good presentation for us again this year, so I will be holding judgment until I hear what they have to say at the business meeting.

A6 – 4 and 6: This is another anti-slate measure, which would expand categories to six nominees and only allow four nominations per voter. I’m still pretty on board with this, though again, willing to listen to arguments. I’m aware that as fixes go, it’ll just make slates require marginally more organization, but it’s also something that’s definitely not going to do any harm if placed in the constitution.

Under New Business for this year–we’ll see how much of this even makes it to the main business meetings. Seriously, guys, come to the preliminary meeting on Thursday if you can. It’s super important, and it’s a place where amendments can get killed without ever making it to debate. It gets pretty wild.

B21 – Best Series: Oh, this thing is back again. Sigh. A proposal to add a Best Series Hugo Category, though at least this year they’re not proposing to kill one of the short fiction categories in favor of the Most Onerous category. I probably sound saltier about this than is warranted because if this category did exist, at this point, it would not do any harm to anything I care about. It’s just not a category I ever have an interest in voting in, and I think it’s pretty ridiculous to want to dump entire series into the Hugo reading list–which is already quite large–as well. I am also really not liking the provision that a series can be nominated for this category multiple times if it just gets 240K words longer. (There have been some good extremely long-running series. Most of them, in my opinion, are not so good.) I’m still not convinced that there’s a solid reason for this category–books that aren’t the first in a series can and do get nominated for best novel all the time.

B22 – December is Good Enough: This would move back the cutoff for when you have to have your membership by in order to nominate for the Hugos. The argument is that it will ease a little of the administrative burden by letting the membership data get sorted out for PINs and the like a month earlier. In general, I think that’s a fair request, though I am open to arguments to the contrary and I’m curious what’s going to be said about this at the meeting.

B23 – Two Years Are Enough: As of right now, members of the current WorldCon (N), the previous WorldCon (N-1), and the next Worldcon (N+1) can all nominate. This would remove the ability of people who have bought memberships for the N+1 WorldCon to nominate. While I get this would remove a major administrative burden, I’m don’t really know if I am on board with this. Arguably, this measure (and the next) could potentially hurt the rabid puppy efforts by requiring that shitcocks who just want to logroll the Hugos to stick it to an imaginary enemy will at least have to buy a fresh membership every year. But I’m not really looking to screw over a lot of potential Hugo nominators and voters just to try to stick it to the nihilists. I think expanding the vote has been something that’s let a lot more people get involved in the Hugos–and invested in them–and helps minimize the cost to allow more people to participate by providing a lot of bang for the membership buck.

B231 – This Year’s Awards, This Year’s Nominators: An even stronger version of the above that would remove the N-1 WorldCon members from the voting and nominating pool. I’m even less in favor of this. This is not a “slight” raising of the bar, particularly for people who find the cost of a WorldCon membership onerous. The expanded voting rights have been in place as long as I’ve been attending WorldCons, and I’m really not wanting to see it go away. I think it makes WorldCon and the Hugos more accessible to more fans, which is of ultimate benefit to the genre.

B24 – Three Stage Voting or “The Only Winning Move Is Not to Play”: An anti-slate measure that would turn the nomination process into a three stage endeavor. Stage 1 would be nominations as normal, stage 2 would be an accept or reject vote on the top 15 nominees, stage 3 would be voting as normal. I think this one has a lot of potential, even if adding a middle stage to the process sounds like it might be a serious headache for the administrators. Though I also wonder if there’d be an issue with people just “reject” voting everything they don’t like so that almost nothing makes it through. I think they make a good point that this is really a way to move the “no award” step of the process to an earlier stage, but I wonder about the potential for abusing the system in a different way from our current one. It would also depend on how many people could be bothered to vote in this middle round. Honestly, if there is a solid argument for this one, I’d rather have it than EPH or EPH+. I don’t want to cause the volunteer administrators to melt.

B25 – Additional Finalists: This one would empower the WorldCon Committee to add up to two additional finalists in a category at their discretion, similar to how the constitution already allows them to add an entire additional one-shot category at their discretion. This would work with Three Stage Voting, allowing the Committee to add finalists if they think it’s in the best interests of the membership to do so. This, rather than removing nominees/finalists as they have been called to do as a result of all the slating nonsense. In the context of three stage voting, I think this is inoffensive.

B26 – EPH+: A modification of the original EPH. Would supposedly work with Three Stage Voting as well, though I’m not sure if that’s a fair burden to place on the administrators at this point, considering they’re volunteers. I would really need to do a deep dive into the arguments to decide how I feel, and I’m going to save that for the business meeting.

B28 – Retrospective Improvement: This would change the language to allow retrospective Hugos to be awarded for 1942-1945, as well as some other nitpicky improvements. I don’t really care about the Retrospective Hugos, to be honest, and don’t see anything wrong with this.

B29 – Universal Suffrage: This requires that all adult memberships come with full voting rights. This hasn’t been a problem before now, but I don’t think there’s harm in making it clear for the future.

B210 – Non-transferability of Voting Rights: This would basically alter WorldCon membership so that supporting memberships (with all the attendant voting rights) cannot be transferred, but attendance at WorldCon would become a supplement to that supporting membership that could be transferred. This would link voting rights specifically to having that supporting membership. (Which you can then upgrade or not.) I can see the administrative reasons for this, certainly. And I also get the philosophy behind making the membership about being a member of WSFS and having voting rights, with WorldCon itself kind of being icing on the cake. But I have concerns how this could effect low-income people who would like to be members.

B211 – Young Adult Award: This brings back the Young Adult Hugo, but takes it into the Not-a-Hugo territory like the Campbell. This gets around the need to explicitly define what YA is. I’ve been cheering for the YA Hugo, and I’m happy to take it as a the YA Not-a-Hugo. Here’s hoping we can finally get this one passed.

Originally published at Rachael Acks: Sound and Nerdery. You can comment here or there.

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Edit at 0820 on 8/25: Due to writing this post at the end of an extremely long day, I misunderstood section 3.6 and got a few things wrong. It should be corrected now; thanks to Cheryl Morgan and Kendall for keeping me on the straight and narrow.

This post is only intended to examine the potential for “No Award” to structurally damage the Hugo Awards, because I’ve now witnessed this odd rumor in a couple different places. I have less than zero interest in debating the righteousness or wrongness of people voting No Award, or discussing my own votes, or pontificating about how it might or might not affect the reputation of the awards. But matters of fact? Let’s get those straight.

Basically, voting No Award in the Hugos has zero effect on the inner workings of the awards themselves. The end. Votes of No Award over successive years might arguably have some kind of negative effect on the voting population, but will not affect the continued existence of the categories or anything like that.

Quick summary: The Hugo categories themselves are enshrined in the WSFS constitution. The only way to add, remove, or alter them is with a constitutional amendment, which takes two years to accomplish. The amendment has to be proposed one year and passed at the business meeting, and then ratified at the next year’s business meeting. You can see this process in action with the proposal of the “Best Series” category for this year. Nothing in the results of the Hugos can actually alter the existence of the awards themselves.

If that’s good enough for you, stop there. Otherwise, I’ll go ahead and get granular.

Let’s take a quick look at the places “No Award” appears in the WSFS constitution. Please note that as of this writing, this is the 2014 WSFS constitution. I don’t think it contains anything we ratified during the business meetings this weekend. But I promise, there was nothing related to “No Award” in the amendments we did ratify.

Section 3.6: “No Award”. At the discretion of an individual Worldcon Committee, if the lack of nominations or final votes in a specific category shows a marked lack of interest in that category on the part of the voters, the Award in that category shall be canceled for that year.

Note the phrase “marked lack of interest.” Lack of interest would be indicated by lack of voting/nominating; a vote of “No Award” still counts as an actual vote.

Under 3.8: Tallying of Nominations: 

3.8.3: Any nominations for “No Award” shall be disregarded.

Pretty self explanatory; nominations for no award will be disregarded when it comes to tallying the nominations. It’s always an option on the final ballot, after all, as we’re about to see.

Under 3.10: Voting:

3.10.3: “No Award” shall be listed in each category of Hugo Award on the final ballot.

Also pretty self explanatory. “No Award” is always an option for voting.

From Section 3.11: Tallying of Votes:

3.11.1: In each category, tallying shall be as described in Section 6.4. “No Award” shall be treated as a nominee. If all remaining nominees are tied, no tie- breaking shall be done and the nominees excluding “No Award” shall be declared joint winners.

3.11.2: “No Award” shall be given whenever the total number of valid ballots cast for a specific category (excluding those cast for “No Award” in first place) is less than twenty-five percent (25%) of the total number of final Award ballots received.

3.11.3: “No Award” shall be the run-off candidate for the purposes of Section 6.5.

This determines how “No Award” is tallied from the ballots. So hey, you could technically win jointly with “No Award.” That’s… a thing. Also, this makes it so that categories that are very small and ignored relative to the total number of ballots get an automatic No Award. Note this doesn’t eliminate a category through lack of apparent interest, just makes “No Award” automatic if very few ballots are received. The categories still exist as required by the constitution.

That’s it. Those are the only places “No Award” is even mentioned in the constitution.

Fun fact: Worldcon committees are allowed (but not required) to make one and only one special Hugo category that will just exist for that year:

3.3.17: Additional Category. Not more than one special category may be created by the current Worldcon Committee with nomination and voting to be the same as for the permanent categories. The Worldcon Committee is not required to create any such category; such action by a Worldcon Committee should be under exceptional circumstances only; and the special category created by one Worldcon Committee shall not be binding on following Committees. Awards created under this paragraph shall be considered to be Hugo Awards.

I don’t believe this has happened during the time I’ve attended/paid attention to WorldCon, which has only been since 2008, but it sounds cool. (And has been used in the past to experiment, such as in 1988 when Watchmen won “Other Forms.” Wikipedia also has a list, though some of those categories were once in the WSFS constitution and then subsequently removed.) Anyway, notice with this, it’s also in line with 3.6; the concom has some discretion when it comes to administering the Hugo categories, but its choices are not in any way permanent. The categories themselves make up sections 3.3.1 through 3.3.17 of the constitution of the World Science Fiction Society. And the constitution can’t just be changed on a whim:

Section 6.6: Amendment. The WSFS Constitution may be amended by a motion passed by a simple majority at any Business Meeting but only to the extent that such motion is ratified by a simple majority at the Business Meeting of the subsequent Worldcon.

So if anything were to be changed structurally about the awards themselves, the administration, the categories, anything, the only way to do that is to get an amendment to the constitution passed by a simple majority at the business meeting, and then ratified the next year.

This would be why there was so much excitement about E Pluribus Hugo and 4 and 6 this year; both will structurally change how nominations are done and finalists are decided for the Hugos. Both got a majority vote at this year’s meeting, but will have no effect unless and until they are ratified in 2016–at which point they will change how things go in 2017.

The conclusion is, the Hugos can’t be structurally destroyed by a single messy year. Or two. Or ten. It would take a majority at two consecutive business meetings to do that. Destroyed socially? Rendered a travesty because they delivered results you personally dislike and thus the Hugos Are Over? That’s for people to argue who have a lot more patience, endurance, and time to waste than me.

Originally published at Rachael Acks: Sound and Nerdery. You can comment here or there.


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Tetsugawa Katsuhiro

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