Tuesday, March 21, 2006

The Koufax Awards suck

No Koufax finalism for Phronesisaical. I'm much appreciative for those of you who nominated us and voted for us in the first round. But we didn't make the cut. We may not be Most Deserving of Wider Recognition, but not making the final cut in that category at least means that we're not widely recognized. I rest my case. We win a moral victory of sorts. And, besides, I think we came close to making the final cut despite having about one-tenth of the readership of the other Wider Recognition blogs. Nyah!

So, now we're supposed to be all a-titter about voting for our other favorite blogs who are continuing the whoring we knew so well just, just, well it seems like yesterday? Screw that shit. Move on, people!

OK, if I have to.... Again, here's where you go for the voting.

But, surprise, the lists are populated by blogs with lots of traffic. At least the master of the "Open Thread" himself, Atrios, didn't make the final cut for Best Writing. That would have been a travesty. My bud Neddie Jingo did, however, and that's where my vote is going. Yours should too because the guy deserves it. He's openly whoring right now. Head on over there. It's really cheap. Michael Bérubé is also in this category. He's capable of brilliant posts. But he ought to be, he's an English Professor. Ned isn't. But you can't go wrong with a vote for Michael either.

Michael would be a good vote for Best Series for his posts about his son, Jamie. (Examples: 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5). So would Pharyngula's PZ Myers for his series on invertebrate sex. Lobster sex Octopus sex Spider Kama Sutra Tentacle sex Tentacle sex, part deux, and Worm porn.

Mr. Wege of Norwegianity, to whom I am indebted in many ways for advice on blogdom, most definitely gets my vote for Most Deserving of Wider Recognition. He is on the ball every day on pretty much everything news and blog oriented. He's one of my first daily stops on the blogroll. If you practice that method, you'll find other blogs redundant and boring, especially the bigger, prettier ones. Really, most posts in the blogosphere are crap, playing on our everyday intuitions, so that we come back and express our own outrage and shock in the comments. The Wege gets it all done for us in the first place. We get the news, the insight, and the outrage, and we're done for the day. 3 Quarks Daily also deserves wider recognition - a very chic and informative blog - but they seem to be doing pretty well recognition-wise, so my nod has to go to The Wege, who's doing okay himself, but got locked into a Norwegian meaningless existence. Either way, you get the latest from Norwegianity and you become knowledgeable with 3 Quarks Daily.

3 Quarks Daily is a good choice for Best Group Blog.

Best Blog (Sponsored) should go to Peter Daou of the Daou Report. I can't bring myself to recommend anyone else. Sponsored blogs miss the DIY nature of blogdom. But Peter does a unique service and gets my vote here. I like Wolcott's openly pretentious writing, but find his blog tedious - being hooked into the Vanity Fair world makes blogging a little winky-wink pastime of news from the entertainment portion of The Complex.

As for Best Blog (Non-Sponsored), I have to go with Lindsay at Majikthise. Lindsay has been doing great work for years now. She writes nice stuff, no fluff, no ripping from others without attribution (which I can't say for Firedoglake), and she has always genuinely invited participation. I had a lovely time guest-posting there last month. Others pay lip-service to this supposed participatory virtue of the blogosphere, but are mostly filled with meandering commentary crap that no one really wants to sort through. Lindsay actually does the participatory approach, and the commenters get this and do good work themselves. If there's virtue in the blogworld, Lindsay's it. Pharyngula is also in this category, but he's fairly specialized, so he goes in the next ones for me. But... PZ has never won one of these awards and he truly deserves it, so vote for him wherever you get the opportunity.

Best Single Issue Blog and Best Expert Blog should both go to PZ at Pharyngula. The only competition in the expert blog category, for me, is Arms Control Wonk. But Jeffrey just bailed on my university to go to Harvard. He's doing well, doesn't really need a blog award on top of it. PZ, meanwhile, is stuck in the snow in Minnesota as a squid expert. Read Arms Control Wonk AND Pharyngula, but vote Pharyngula.

As for the other experts blogs, the category is bullshit. There are only two experts in this category with perhaps the exception of Brad Delong. This is a thankless category. There are terrific expert blogs out there, but no one reads them except other experts - that's the problem with expert blogs. Real Climate, for instance, is excellent, and was one of my nominations, but you have to be keyed into climate science. This category is actually about experts blogging for non-experts. It ought to be framed as such. Most of them, as it is, are journalists or lawyers. If they were writing on journalism or law, then they might fit the category better. But they're writing as experts on everything because they're journalists or lawyers, which is just like a journalist or lawyer. A true Best Expert Blog category opens up blog-o-space for the kinds of folks I and others nominated. But this is the classic case of democracy breaking down in the face of plebes vs. experts. The category ought to be done away with or restructured.

Best New Blog is a tough category. My money is on Glenn Greenwald winning this one since he has tons of traffic. He writes a good blog. But I can't bring myself to vote for the huge-traffic, screw-you blogs. It would be great if you could cast a vote towards Mad Melancholic Feminista.

As for the other categories... I've seen these blogs and am not easily impressed. Sadly, No! is good. If you want to give them the Humor Award, do that. There are a lot funnier blogs - than the nominees - that didn't make the cut because they don't have the readership, and most of the humor of the other nominees is a little too regular. So this is yet another common denominator category.

Those are the ones I care about. The rest is all about who gets to be Prom King and Queen. Vote away!

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