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Oh. Wait…

I’d like to start by congratulating Kate Paulk on her magnificent effort in organizing and collating the SAD PUPPIES 4 LIST.

This is how you conduct a professional, non-partisan job. I have deliberately stayed un-involved (I didn’t even post my own votes) simply because that could be mis-construed as trying to influence the vote. After all, I’m the guy who has said publishers and authors should not vote in a fan award. I think lobbying for votes is pretty well below the bar, let alone introducing captive votes.

That doesn’t mean I don’t support Kate, and didn’t want readers to go and vote for works they enjoyed. It just means I was willing to step back, show no favoritism… and be seen to do so. You know, like the WorldCon organizers and the Hugo Committee…

Oh. Wait…

Well, like anyone who values their reputation for honesty, integrity and fair play would do.

The Puppy Kickers have, needless to say, responded with decorum and decency. And when idiots among their ranks spouted obvious nonsense (we all have our idiots) being sensible reasonable folk the rest spoke up, apologized for the jackasses, and allowed free debate among their vastly socio-politically non-uniform ranks, with tolerance and generosity abounding…

Oh. Wait… (yes. A few of them made grudging concessions. But their ‘friends’ soon sorted that out.)

Never mind. There was always that role model, John Scalzi, informed and generous as ever, welcoming the democratization of compiling a recommended list by readers in a transparent, open process.

I would not willingly participate on an award nomination slate;
If I’m on such a slate it’s without my consent;
Those who have put me or my work on such a slate should remove me from it;
If they won’t remove me, or anyone who asks to be removed, they’re likely assholes;
And maybe you should factor that in when thinking about them and their motives.

That about sums it up.”

And when asked if that made Locus a bunch of assholes, because they do not ask consent – Johnny informed us that Locus’s recommend list is not a stealth slate (even though it is remarkably predictive. Strange that.).

So let me get this straight, John. Locus, using a group of industry insiders, with vested interests, who compose their list in secret in collusion with each other…. ISN’T ‘a slate’. But an open, transparent democratic vote by the public IS ‘a slate’.

And the people who put John on that ‘slate’ (because it is a simple, open, transparent count of votes, the voters are the people who put you there, John) – are, according to John Scalzi, assholes. So: following logically: In other words John says his readers, readers that liked his work and voted for it, are assholes. Ah, got it! This is what I’m doing wrong. I like my readers, and I try to avoid insulting them even if I’d rather they didn’t vote for me. If that’s what it takes, count me out. But I’m sure no publisher faced with an author who regarded his or her readers as assholes would offer that author a multi-million dollar contract. Why that would imply they agreed that readers were assholes. Couldn’t happen! No one would do that surely?

Oh. Wait…

Or we have the amusing confusion of Cat Valente, who was demanding the Sad Pups remove her from their ‘slate’. She knew it was a slate and that they were going ask her permission (just like Locus does (Oh. wait…) because she got her information from the “excellent coverage” which she recommends. I see. Now correct me if I have this wrong, but wasn’t one the principal whines that slate or block voters who didn’t think for themselves, and voted for works they hadn’t actually read, on the say so of an orchestrator who had something to gain? (Which, we may point out is something the Sad Puppies have repeatedly, for years, asked people NOT to do). But that’s completely different from reading the ‘excellent coverage’ of an orchestrator who has something to gain, instead of actually reading what the Sad Puppies say, and thinking for yourself…

Oh. Wait…

Of course several thousand people ‘voted slate’ let File 770 and the like do their thinking for them, never bothered to read anything on offer, and voted for ‘No Award’. But I am sure that’s different. Oh. Wait…

Now, I’m no fan of Valente’s. We have nothing in common, come from opposite ends of the human continuum. Our writing reflects this. Her world would kill me, and my world would kill her. I have read one of her works, which is more than she ever did of mine, I’d guess. Her writing is not to my taste — but some people do like that sort of thing. Consider this: If only works I did like appeared on the nomination list, then there’d be nothing for people like Valente. They too SHOULD have something they’d like to vote for.

Of course the converse should also apply. I wonder if Cat Valente could get her head around that concept? I suppose she did figure that calling her fans assholes was less-than-charming, so who knows?  But then she’s in a ‘world according to File 770’ that somehow concludes that the heroes in our books are all white heterosexual men…

Oh. Wait… Cat. Maybe before you make an idiot of yourself in public by eagerly believing anything you read on File 770… (Mike Glyer is extremely skilled – at selective quotes, and is very much a beneficiary of the status quo.) Well, look at Sarah Hoyt’s lead characters, Larry Correia’s lead characters and even mine. Their politics may differ from your ideal – but that’s actually all you could complain about. You know, your head might indeed explode if you looked at Brad Torgersen’s original list of recommendations last year. Had he not asked, had the ‘Requires Hate’ model of intimidating people into a fear of association not worked… and the vote attained the same Puppy proportions 2015 would have been the most gender, orientation, and color diverse year in the history of the Hugos, full of new entrants. But, as Laura Mixon illustrated with her post on ‘Requires Hate’, bullying, whisper campaigns, exclusion and intimidation worked very well… on women and minorities of a certain political flavor. What Mixon never figured out – or didn’t want to figure out — ‘Requires Hate’ tried the same crap with people who weren’t women, gay or not white, or not of her political flavor. She tried it on us at MGC as ‘Winterfox’. We laughed at her, and ignored her histrionics and nastiness. It’s just more File 770 and the Straw Puppies, and we’re used to it.  So lot of the ‘inclusion’ got bullied out before the list got off the ground. And that just left those who didn’t care what the doctrine police liked. And that is behind the ‘no ask’ policy – the same as Locus and others. We’d love to be better than them, but unfortunately, the bullying level is such that it is impossible.

I don’t know if Cat Valente can get her head around that.

It comes under the heading ‘I don’t really care.’

We’ll see if anyone else does when the noms come out.

If one wants to bother to vote. If you believe that nomination exercise credible and worthwhile.

I must admit I haven’t yet, and don’t know if I can be bothered to do so. You know, as I put it before, my support for World Con and the Hugos is rather like one’s support for cousin Hugo who has turned into a hopeless drunk, in the process of losing everything because of his life choices. You remember him as a nice guy, once. Funny, compassionate, full of promise and potential, rather than the vicious drunk and petty thief he is now. For the sake of what he once was, you still try and help him, even though you know it’s probably fruitless and he’ll probably steal from you too. But eventually, you just have to walk away, because he has to want to change. And I’m not seeing that.

Kate has put a huge amount of work into the Sad Pups 4 list, and she’s attending. A good reason – possibly the only good reason – for attending MACII is to stand behind her. She doesn’t need anyone (Kate makes me look soft), but might like the company. There will, I believe, be a Sad Pups party. It’s not a ‘safe space’ but a con party, just like any other con party.

I wrote to the Hugo committee and the chairs of Mid Americon II quite a long time ago asking why we should vote in the noms and why we should attend their con.

Thank you for informing me that Hugo Nominations are open. Actually, I am aware of this.  So are the 10 800 odd page views who read my post on how you handed my – and other voters — voting records over to a pair of so-called ‘researchers’ – who are based within a partisan group which has a financial interest in the outcome of the award( https://madgeniusclub.com/2016/02/15/on-teachers-kids-and-hugos/ ). You handed the data over to a group which is implicated in previous wrongdoings and manipulation ( https://madgeniusclub.com/2015/04/13/nostradumbass-and-madame-bugblatterfatski/ ). And you handed it over to them, and only them, in secret, having refused to make them available to the public, as they could not be adequately anonymized.  The post was widely echoed, so I think the question you need to answer for about 20 000 possible voters: why should we bother?  If you’ll behave in this fashion in this instance, what else are you doing to tilt the field that we don’t know about? How much further will you go?

Why should we bother to give money, legitimacy and credibility to your process by participating?

What concrete steps are you going to take to reassure voters that you’re not just the marketing arm of Tor books?  Not empty platitudes, excuses, evasions or your word – which, by handing over this data, and not following up on Patrick Nielsen Hayden’s pre-knowledge of the nominations last year – you’ve established is near worthless, but public actions.  Perhaps you’d like to start by investigating quite how Patrick Nielsen Hayden knew the embargoed results in advance, and dealing appropriately and publicly with all the parties concerned, so we know you’re not actually favoring them.

Please pass on to your so-called researchers – if they are unaware – that I do not consent for them to use my data in any way, shape or form. It was obtained without my knowledge, without my consent and certainly without my approval.  As such it breaches the ethical requirements of most academic institutions and all reputable journals. I consider your handing it to them – or accessing it yourselves for any purpose but the voting — a complete betrayal of trust.  I hope you will take appropriate and public action to restore that trust.

On another matter entirely, and addressed at the general MidAmeriCon II administrators. I have a substantial number of readers within easy driving distance of your Con. Those of my friends, fans and readers who went had an extremely unpleasant and unwelcoming experience at Sasquan – for which David Gerrold with the co-operation of some of the Con organizers were responsible.  Would you like to tell me, so I can tell them, why MAC II will be different, and worth spending money on, and why they should attend or support?  I think it is worth pointing out that your Hugo Administrators have so far made this very much less likely. 

It is fair to point out that I intend to publish this letter, and your reply. Or the fact that did not reply.

Eventually, David McCarty did reply: He did ask that I publish the entire letter – which, as I’m not ‘selective quotes’ Glyer, I have.

Here is the unfisked reply – my fisked reply is below. This is inserted because Mr Glyer – who has never quoted the entire document if he could find something nasty to select – was moaning and squirming that I didn’t honor McCarty request. I am therefore doing so with the request that Glyer only quotes me in full in future. Let’s see how honorable Glyer is. Any bets?

Mr Freer,

With the passage of the EPH proposal at the Sasquan business meeting, the members of WSFS began the process of substantially altering the method for selecting Hugo finalists. The method being proposed is novel. There is no prior example to let the members of WSFS understand completely how this method might operate when used in the Hugo awards. As such, it was imperative that EPH be tested with meaningful data and those results reported to the next business meeting at MidAmeriCon II.

To accomplish this, Sasquan made its Hugo nominating data available to MidAmeriCon II for testing. MidAmeriCon II provided access to two researchers (Bruce Schneier and Jameson Quinn) and worked collaboratively with them to test the counting method. The data was anonymized prior to it being shared for testing. A random key was assigned to the voter, and this key was reset to a new value in each category, so a voter who participated in six categories was given six unique keys. The data was also normalized to standardize choices and further anonymize the ballot data. The researchers were given the data under an NDA, and while some analysis results were released prematurely, the NDA was not broken, as no voter data was shared by them. The researchers’ technical paper is under academic review. A more complete report to the business meeting will be made public later this spring or early summer.

The particulars of handling the privacy and secrecy of the Hugo nominators and voters is a responsibility handed each year to the Hugo subcommittee of each year’s Worldcon. Additionally that team is charged with protecting the interest and the integrity of the Hugos. We take these responsibilities very seriously.

I can assure you that neither we, nor the administrators of the Sasquan Hugos, contacted the employees of Tor, or any other publisher, prior to the release of the Sasquan final ballot, except to the extent that we will attempt to contact all nominees, and such contacts may be through their publisher, in the cases where the individual nominees have no other published contact information. This may allow a publisher to know some works that have qualified for the final ballot, but only the works published by that house, and only to the extent that we do not have any other contact information.

MidAmeriCon II welcomes all fans, as exemplified in our code of conduct, available at http://midamericon2.org/policies/code-of-conduct/. Each Worldcon’s convention committee and staff is unique to that Worldcon, and experiences at Sasquan should not be assumed to be relevant to MidAmeriCon II.

I understand your inclination to publish my response publicly, I would only ask that you publish the response in full if you do

Dave McCarty – Hugo Administrator

MidAmeriCon II

Fisked version.

My comments are in bold. Seldom has anyone given me so much rope to hang themselves with. And no. They will do nothing, take no concrete action, and take no steps at all. But you can have your fill of worthless platitudes.

Mr Freer
With the passage of the EPH proposal at the Sasquan business meeting, the members of WSFS began the process of substantially altering the method for selecting Hugo finalists.

For which they have no responsibility in 2016 at all. The vote needs to be ratified and will only be something the 2017 Hugo committee will have to implement IF it is. The committees are separate, so we’re told. This one has nothing at all to do with it. Should in no way be involved. In fact is obliged NOT to be involved, to be neutral.

The method being proposed is novel.

Yes, I think they found it in one.

There is no prior example to let the members of WSFS understand completely how this method might operate when used in the Hugo awards.

It’s none of their business. If the business meeting decides and votes and ratifies they want the votes divided in three and strapped to cannon-shells, the members of WSFS have no need to understand. They just have to do it.

As such, it was imperative that EPH be tested with meaningful data and those results reported to the next business meeting at MidAmeriCon II.
No, it wasn’t imperative. There is no obligation at all. The opposite is true. One partisan group decided to push this issue. The administrators had, in fact, a strict duty to be seen as neutral. I honestly don’t care one way or the other – any moderately competent mathematician can work out the effect – which once again, is no-one’s business. There would be a minor buffering effect on one block-vote, next to none on two, and it would be irrelevant on three. By increasing the complexity and reducing transparency cheating is ALWAYS made easier. Should testing actually be required, which it wasn’t, various programs exist for generating data for the specific purpose. These are good enough for banks and stock exchanges. But of course a tiny teeny little voting procedure like this is more complicated. Oh. Wait…

It isn’t. What the actual data does is make it possible to pick up collusion (which is why I wanted it). It also makes predictive cheating easier. But no one involved has a commercial or social status interest… Oh. Wait…
To accomplish this, Sasquan made its Hugo nominating data available to MidAmeriCon II for testing. MidAmeriCon II provided access to two researchers (Bruce Schneier and Jameson Quinn)

In secret. Two ‘researchers’ who had worked within and from ‘Making Light’ – a site run and controlled for the benefit of a commercially interested party. Also a group associated with wrongdoing in prior Hugo awards – the group in which Patrick Nielsen Hayden had displayed foreknowledge of the embargoed results, which he had no legitimate reason to know. Also a strongly partisan group.

and worked collaboratively with them to test the counting method.

So you provided resources to a partisan group. That is a completely neutral act and a service you made available to others… Oh. Wait… no, you refused. You said it could not be anonymized adequately, and they couldn’t have the data, let alone help.

The data was anonymized prior to it being shared for testing. A random key was assigned to the voter, and this key was reset to a new value in each category, so a voter who participated in six categories was given six unique keys. The data was also normalized to standardize choices and further anonymize the ballot data.

And of course this was done in the full glare of public awareness, notifying the people whose data you gave out… Oh. Wait. It was done in secret. After the data had been refused to them at the 2015 business meeting.

But I’m sure it was all with proper procedures, independent witness… Oh. Wait…

The researchers were given the data under an NDA, and while some analysis results were released prematurely, the NDA was not broken, as no voter data was shared by them.

So either they needed a NDA because the data was not anonymized – or they didn’t. Voter data would include anything derived from that data. So yes. Their NDA was breached. It was breached to highly partisan group. Did you take any steps? Take any action? This BTW is a good point to point out that Jameson Quinn’s little bragging session to File 770 invoked a claim that weak correlation existed in the data for other groups but that it was nothing like as strong as for the puppies. Now, that is actually impossible to derive, IF the data is anonymized as above. You could yes, venture a guess with a degree of probability as to a correlation, by using the puppy lists. But with each category a further degree of uncertainty is introduced. You of course CAN’T derive the same across the non-puppy block votes because you don’t know what categories they operated in, or what they were for. So: basically either Quinn… shall we say… stretched the truth. Or Hugo administrators did.

The researchers’ technical paper is under academic review.

And if anyone can point me Jameson Quinn’s academic institution, I will lodge an ethics complaint. I will certainly challenge any paper and for that I will need full access to the raw data. Science needs standards, and rewarding wrongdoing makes it happen again.

A more complete report to the business meeting will be made public later this spring or early summer. Only if you wish to establish beyond any reasonable doubt that you took sides in an issue that was not ratified, that you had no business interfering in. That’s your choice: are you neutral and trustworthy? Or are you partisan and not trustworthy? Do the voters reward unethical behavior? Or is it suddenly Okay when it is their side? It will be interesting to see if the ‘we have to punish the puppies for unethical behavior’ crowd will have the same standards for their own pets. But they’ve always done so in the past. Oh. Wait…

The particulars of handling the privacy and secrecy of the Hugo nominators and voters is a responsibility handed each year to the Hugo subcommittee of each year’s Worldcon. Additionally that team is charged with protecting the interest and the integrity of the Hugos. We take these responsibilities very seriously.

So: taking these responsibilities very seriously: that means naturally that you need to be seen to be neutral, above suspicion, not cutting secret sweet-heart co-operation with people from partisan groups with questionable ‘inside knowledge’ and commercial connections. People who claimed to take those responsibilities very seriously would NEVER do things like that, because it’s not just good enough to tell people you take it seriously, you actually have to make sure you are perceived as that. Your team did that, and refused to do anything that could possibly be considered ‘dodgy’ by anyone. Otherwise you’re not taking it seriously. Oh. Wait…
I can assure you that neither we, nor the administrators of the Sasquan Hugos, contacted the employees of Tor, or any other publisher, prior to the release of the Sasquan final ballot, except to the extent that we will attempt to contact all nominees, and such contacts may be through their publisher, in the cases where the individual nominees have no other published contact information. This may allow a publisher to know some works that have qualified for the final ballot, but only the works published by that house, and only to the extent that we do not have any other contact information.

I am so relieved to hear that! So of course you’ll be taking steps to deal with the individuals implicated in what really can only be secret block voting collusion (as that is the only way possible then for this foreknowledge. He knew who to ask, and they were willing to tell him, and knew that no one else could possibly have won except the puppy nominees. If we accept your word (and I must admit the way took your responsibility very seriously does make it hard) that is the only alternative. I wonder what those steps will be to restore credibility? Oh. Wait… did you say “Guest of Honor”?
MidAmeriCon II welcomes all fans, as exemplified in our code of conduct, available at http://midamericon2.org/policies/code-of-conduct/. Each Worldcon’s convention committee and staff is unique to that Worldcon, and experiences at Sasquan should not be assumed to be relevant to MidAmeriCon II.

Phew! Thank heavens! A code of conduct! Now if only Sasquan had had a code of conduct it would have been a joy… oh. Wait…

And committee staff is unique to that Worldcon! Fantastic. Oh. Wait… Who was this other Dave McCarty at Sasquan?

I understand your inclination to publish my response publicly, I would only ask that you publish the response in full if you do.
I have.

Dave McCarty – Hugo Administrator

MidAmeriCon II

For what it is worth, I still think Kate is worthy of your support at the con. I may as well vote in nominations. I urge those who vote to have read work and to vote on merit. But I cannot, on the basis of their conduct so far, recommend the con. Perhaps rather spend the money on books from your favorite authors.

190 Comments
  1. Freddie_mac #

    I confess that I did drop by Cat Valente’s blog and informed her that I haven’t read any of her work and wouldn’t consider any of her work in the future.

    March 21, 2016
    • Nothing like wanting your appeal to be more exclusive… a la Spinal Tap

      March 21, 2016
      • Draven #

        {hipster] I know this great band you’ve never hearrrd offf because they are SOOOOO indie…. [/hipster]

        March 21, 2016
        • Joe in PNG #

          I find it kind of funny in this era of fewer and fewer readers of Science Fiction, you have publishers and authors want to cut their reader base even further.

          Well, okay.. go get them, tiger, and hope you lot get the job at the ‘good’ Starbucks.

          March 22, 2016
    • Chuckle.

      It has nothing to do with puppies, but there is one author who pretty much informed my sliver of the demographic that he didn’t want us as fans. Okay.

      Have not read that author since. After all, it’s what he wanted.

      Being it’s one of those days, I merely skimmed her blog. She never realized her confusion resulted from perceived stereotype meeting reality and never asked if, perhaps, what she’d been told was not the truth. Thought about mentioning that on her blog, but odds are she wouldn’t take it to heart, and frankly I didn’t care. Having never heard of her before, it’s not as though she lost a customer.

      March 21, 2016
    • John R. Ellis #

      I read Cat Valente’s “The Girl Who ____” series until I made the mistake of reading her blog. Among other things, the post about how Disney’s TANGLED is “obviously anti-Semitic” because the witch character had dark hair and was a bad mother THEREFORE OBVIOUSLY meant to be Jewish. 😛

      March 21, 2016
      • Robin Munn #

        Um…?

        Oh dear.

        Would you mind posting a link? Because I’m not sure I want to dive in and search for that myself. My mother recommended “The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making” to me, and from the title, I was pretty sure I was going to like the book once I managed to find it in a library. Now it seems like I’m going to have problems enjoying it, and it’ll be worse if her blog is as bad as you make it sound.

        I could forgive her for being scared of the Puppy-Kickers, who (given that she’s conventionally published, through Macmillan) could destroy her career if they chose. But for being so silly as to think that Tangled is anti-Semitic… oh dear.

        But that’s another reason why I’m asking for a link. I’d rather not take hearsay evidence if I can get proof.

        March 21, 2016
        • John R. Ellis #

          http://catvalente.livejournal.com/641526.html

          Among other gems, she lets us know that a black chef who enjoys making Cajun food in 1920s New Orleans is racist, that Rapunzel’s hair being naturally brown but gold when imbued with the Sun Flower’s magic is OBVIOUSLY EVIL (and not a visual symbol for, yanno, sunlight related magic) and that depicting the witch being emotionally abusive (and therefore evil) is ITSELF EVIL because Reasons. It deteriorates badly and goes on several tangents.

          (The first book in the GIRL WHO ____ series is the best. The sequels get increasingly joyless and clunky.)

          March 21, 2016
          • windsong #

            Heh. I thought Tangled was an excellent depiction of being raised by a mother with NPD. They caught the subtle nuances perfectly.

            March 22, 2016
            • LastRedoubt #

              Yeah. The mom from Tangled was an excellent example of a cluster-B. So was the stepmom from the live remake of cinderella

              March 22, 2016
          • Arwen #

            I heard they based her off the actress who played the witch from Into the Woods. Just hearsay though.

            March 22, 2016
      • How odd. I thought they made her look rather Italian, or vaguely Greek, personally.

        March 22, 2016
      • windsong #

        Same here. Because I am a completionist, I’ll finish the series, but she made it abundantly clear that she only prefers a certain type of fan. I’d rather support authors that don’t feel the moral need to insult their fans. I *try* to keep the author separate from the book, but it’s becoming increasingly difficult when so many authors use their blogs and social networks to let specific subsets of their fans know how much they despise them.

        March 22, 2016
  2. Last year, we heard how horrible the Sad Puppies were for putting forth a ‘slate’ of nominees. One of the particularly horrible things the Puppies did was, in many cases, list the same number of recommendations as there were nomination slots. This, we were readily informed, was bad. It made it a “vote for this and only this” slate, rather than a list of recommendations.

    If only the Puppies suggested one nomination per category, that would be just fine and dandy. The Puppies would be welcomed with open arms by the fen. You know, like they were during Sad Puppies 2. Oh, wait…

    Or if the Puppies had made their list of recommendations longer than the number of available nomination slots it wouldn’t be a slate. Because it can’t be a slate if people can’t just vote for the full list. THEN all would be well and the fen would welcome the Puppies with open arms. Lo, the Puppy list of recommendations now has many categories with more recommendations than available nomination slots. And the fen have been effusive in their praise for the openness of the process and the “slate” label has been discarded amidst cries of joy and celebration. Oh wait…

    At least the puppy-kickers are a predicable lot…

    March 21, 2016
    • One should note that the word “fen” has two meanings.
      Both are very appropriate in this case.

      March 21, 2016
      • I prefer the geographic ones in East Anglia. Yes they can be bitterly cold in winter – the NE wind comes direct from Siberia and there’s no ground more than 100′ above sea-level the entire distance – and muddy and smelly if you step in the wrong place, but they’re nice and empty and the people you meet, though suspicious of outsiders, are generally willing to help and chat if you meet them half way.

        The other sort of fen might also be described as cold and smelly not to mention suspicious of outsiders – and even vacuous – but the real difference is that they don’t actually seem to be nice or friendly when outsiders make overtures.

        March 21, 2016
        • Basara549 #

          The puppy-kickers are the ROUS in the fen……

          March 21, 2016
          • Patrick Chester #

            …but I believe they exist. O_o;;

            March 22, 2016
      • The Other Sean #

        Your comment made we think of “drain the fen.” That could have at least two meanings, as well. Consider Kate Paulk’s stories – or the dealer room at a convention. 🙂

        March 21, 2016
    • Patrick Chester #

      This “oh wait” game has so many possibilities due to PK antics. 😉

      March 21, 2016
    • Don’t forget that there were only four out of the sixteen categories where the Sad Puppies 3 list had five entries.

      March 21, 2016
  3. Dave, while in general I agree with your criticisms – and as a former professional parliamentarian, I’m always interested in methods of voting and nominations and elections – I have to call you on one thing.

    You’re attacking the integrity of Bruce Schneier. That is an extraordinary claim, as the man is one of the most revered experts on security alive, and has a well-earned reputation for being absolutely as straight an arrow as they come. As such, it requires extraordinary proof. So far, all you’ve done is allege, and raise specific accusations only against his co-investigator.

    Yes, indeed, this was handled badly…but you weaken your case by including Schneier without any visible grounds.

    March 21, 2016
    • Jay, here are the facts. A reputation is one thing, your actual actions another.
      1)Making Light is the web presence of two editors with strong commercial interests in winning awards. It is not, by any perception anywhere a neutral venue.
      2)According to the Hugo Administrator quoted in this piece there is no way that the editor in question had not been involved in questionable doings in the competition they were involving themselves in.
      3)The site is extremely partisan, allowing no dissent (comments are removed). There are plainly a substantial number strongly opposed people to that partisanship. It cannot, by anyone, be fairly considered neutral, or un-controversial or without commercial interest in affecting the outcome.
      4)All of the above is public knowledge, easily found out.
      5) Bruce Schneier and Jameson Quinn chose voluntarily to be associated and work from and with Making Light.
      6) They were refused access to the data at the business meeting.
      7) Having been refused the data, they either lobbied for it, or were given it in secret. In either case they were well aware that they’d been refused it along with general public. They knew they were representing a group known for being partisan. Should they have accepted it if it was given to them? Should they have lobbied for it? Either answer is an unequivocal ‘no’. But they did.
      8)Any professional who wished to maintain his or her reputation – especially under these circumstances – would have insisted on oversight by neutral individuals, with safeguards to re-assure people their integrity. That’s part of being professional, especially in the field of security. They chose not to.
      9)Quinn promptly went and boasted about his results on File 770 – simply unacceptable in any professional sense. Did Schneier step up to the plate and reprimand him or distance himself? No.
      10) They know full well that there is no legal requirement for the Hugo committee to test the system (and in fact that they are obliged to remain neutral and EPH is not anything to do with 2016) They still went along and co-operated, in something they knew full well was going to be perceived as biased. It is… and and now folk are acting all surprised about it. If you jump into a pig-pen, expect pig-shit. I assume they thought the people who would find it unacceptable are unimportant and could be silenced.
      Are these grounds visible? Look, if it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck and acts like a duck and hangs out with ducks… are we supposed to think it’s a giraffe? Now, it is possible that Schneier has blundered into a minefield where he wasn’t really paying much attention or much involved in the situation. That’s not really a commendation for a security expert, but we all screw up. Man up, admit you made some undeniable mistakes being involved, and step away, would be sensible advice. Quinn, on the other hand, is a different matter.

      March 21, 2016
      • Robin Munn #

        Now, it is possible that Schneier has blundered into a minefield where he wasn’t really paying much attention or much involved in the situation. That’s not really a commendation for a security expert, but we all screw up.

        Given Schneier’s professional field and career, I’d go beyond “it’s possible” to “I’m pretty sure”. As in, I’m pretty sure he had no idea who Making Light was before they asked him to do a voting-pattern analysis, and figured “Okay, analyse the voting patterns on a science-fiction award. Sounds like something where my knowledge would be useful.” Seriously, I don’t know of anything in his background that suggests he would be aware that Making Light was partisan, or would have known to read Mad Genius Club or other Puppy blogs to find that out.

        I mean, I’m sure there are major controversies in, say, the oceanography community over, well, I don’t actually know what they would be about — I’m a computer programmer, and my only exposure to oceanography was watching Jacques Cousteau documentaries when I was a kid. Let’s say for the purpose of argument that there’s currently a bit controversy in the oceanography community over the most ethical approach to capturing sharks for research. But if an oceanographer named Bill Smith asked me to give my professional opinion on the computer program he’d written to analyse his shark-research data, I would: 1) probably have no clue that Dr. Smith was one of the most controversial figures in the field, with many respected scientists condemning him for his use of unaware human bait in capturing sharks, and 2) would not know where to look to find out. I’d probably google “Bill Smith oceanographer”, find his homepage and résumé (neither of which would mention the controversies), and stop there.

        March 21, 2016
        • Robin Munn #

          Typo: a BIG controversy, not a BIT controversy.

          March 21, 2016
        • Robin Munn #

          I’ll also note that when I’ve done Google searches of Hugo-controversy stuff, it’s been FAR easier to turn up results from File 770, et al., then it has to turn up results from Mad Genius Club, Monster Hunter Nation, and According to Hoyt. The former are on pages 1 and 2, the latter on pages 4 and 5, in my recent experience. So if Schneier did do his basic research, it’s actually quite likely that he’d only have heard one (self-serving) side of the story, and would be in the dark about the fact that there’s any controversy.

          Further, I just went to Schneier’s blog and browsed back to January 1st, 2016. He never mentions the Hugos, Puppies, or anything even remotely related to them. More evidence for the “He had no clue that Making Light was a center of controversy, and wouldn’t have done more than basic research” theory: the science-fiction community and its controversies appear to have not even been on his radar.

          March 21, 2016
        • Bruce Schneier’s been part of the con scene for a long time. IIRC, he did the “local Restaurant Guide” for ConJose, the 2002 Worldcon, and he wasn’t even close to being a newbie then.

          So, yes, he had to have known exactly what he was walking in to, and if his actions are correctly described by Dave (and I have no reason to think they are not), he screwed the pooch, big time.

          My respect for Bruce was high. It’s been diminished by this.

          March 21, 2016
          • Robin Munn #

            Then he did know he was stepping into a controversial subject, Dave is right, and I’m wrong.

            March 21, 2016
            • Robin, I wish everyone was pleasant and fair as you are. Thank you.

              March 21, 2016
      • I had never heard of Making Light until this post, Dave. I have no trouble believing Schneier hasn’t, either. For that matter, I also have no trouble believing he’s never heard of File 770, much less gone to read it regularly.

        And I’d be mildly surprised if he’s even seen this post, or heard of your objections.

        March 21, 2016
        • Bruce posted the first pass of EPH on Making Light. Yes, he knows what it is, he knows what the politics are, he’s friends with the Torlings, and he chose to get involved.

          He’s not the first expert to screw his reputation for personal and / or political reasons, and he won’t be the last.

          March 21, 2016
          • Bibliotheca Servare #

            Ninja! Lol, I just checked upthread, and you posted a (much more articulate) explanation regarding this issue before I posted my…rather salty…response. Hence: “Ninja!” 😛

            March 22, 2016
        • Bibliotheca Servare #

          Only one problem with that point: the Knight is Shining Digital Armor in question…*discussed the issue at Making Light*! As in, he not only knew of it, he was a *participant* in their blasted *discussions* there! And his research partner blathered about their research on File770…how exactly could he be unaware of *its* existence? Either way, he sure as hell knew about Making Light. Whatever “rep” this fellow might have in the tech world, my first experience with him has me inclined to believe he is either an extremely competent, unscrupulous, arrogant schmuck, or a clueless imbecile who has some competence in his chosen field despite his ignorance. I’ll grant that you may have more positive experiences with the fellow, but I have not witnessed anything that inclines me to think my opinion of him is mistaken. I don’t say this to offend you, rather I wish to explain my own perspective on the issue you and others have brought up. 🙂 God bless!

          March 21, 2016
          • All right, I stand corrected and withdraw my objection. I refuse to ascribe Quinn’s actions on File 770 to Schneier. On the other hand, Schneier obviously knew of Making Light, and it’s reasonable to assume that he did indeed know of the controversy.

            This is not going to change my opinion of him as security expert. He’s demonstrated far too much expertise far too many times and been far too right far too often to lose that over this, in my view. But I will at least look at his opinions on SF and the Hugos with this in mind.

            March 22, 2016
    • You’re attacking the integrity of Bruce Schneier.

      Schneier burned every ounce of credibility he had with me right after 9/11, when he started pontificating on aspects of security that he was manifestly unqualified to even discuss, much less lecture on (e.g., physical security and firearms) so he has at least a fifteen year history of making a burnt offering of his reputation on the altar of the SJW political agenda.

      He knows a lot about encryption. That’s it. That doesn’t make him an expert on firearms, or any other aspect of “security”.

      March 22, 2016
  4. c4c

    March 21, 2016
    • Bjorn Hasseler #

      c4c

      March 21, 2016
  5. Cat Valente’s reaction is hilarious. Incidentally, I’d never heard of her before this, and I suspect I may never hear of her again, since she’s decided to achieve professional success by sucking-up rather than achievement.

    March 21, 2016
    • She’s been around for a while, long enough to publish a series that some folks enjoy, and to get Hugo-nominated for it. She’s also one of the guests of honor at this year’s Penguicon, the con I consider my home con (despite being 750 miles away).

      March 21, 2016
      • But as the lack of data from the last Hugos may indicate, there may be no necessary connection between writing a series which some folks enjoy, and getting Hugo-nominated for it. It’s starting to look increasingly like, since Tor took them over, the Hugos no longer mean anything other than “how well did you suck up to the Haydens last year.”

        March 25, 2016
    • scott2harrison #

      Dammit, I keep misreading her name as Cat Ballou.

      March 21, 2016
      • You, too?

        March 21, 2016
      • Oddly, I never had. Then that’s one of my mother’s favorite movies, I think, and well, there is no comparison.

        March 21, 2016
    • I think I first heard of her last year, maybe the year before, when she was grousing about Sad Puppies or something.

      March 21, 2016
  6. snowcrash #

    …Locus’s recommend list is not a stealth slate (even though it is remarkably predictive. Strange that.).

    Not really. The Locus Recommended reading list has (for example) more than 60 novels on it. It’s predictive only in the Texas Sharpshooter sense 🙂

    March 21, 2016
  7. Meredith Dixon #

    I have finally gotten around to looking at the Retro Hugos recommendations, and I’m dismayed to see that either Kate is confused or I am. The 1941 Retro Hugos honor works first published in 1940, so that means that *The Incomplete Enchanter* (*The Compleat Enchanter* came later) is not eligible for best novel; it was published in 1941.

    *Mr. Tompkins in Wonderland*, by George Gamow, *is* eligible for the Retro Hugos, and I’ve nominated it. I wish I’d researched this back when I could still add to the Sad Puppies recommendation thread.

    March 21, 2016
    • Kate Paulk #

      Meredith,

      I merely listed/collated what people had suggested, unless there was clear discussion in that thread that the work wasn’t eligible.

      March 22, 2016
  8. My husband and I will be going to MidAmerican, since we live about 15 minutes from it. So we’re hoping to at least see some of the Sad Puppies around. 😀 (Don’t really expect much otherwise.)

    March 21, 2016
    • I’m hoping to be there too. Actually right now trying to work out the travel schedule

      March 21, 2016
  9. I’ve gone to 4 Worldcons and after the last in Spokane I’ve decided they aren’t worth the money. I can see more friends and enjoy myself at Libertycon and other cons. It also didn’t help things when I saw the Hayden’s were GOH. What has Theresa Hayden ever done to be a GOH of Worldcon other then being married to Patrick?

    March 21, 2016
    • The Other Sean #

      And what has Patrick done to deserve to be GOH, rather than a punch in the face?

      March 21, 2016
      • aacid14 #

        Admittedly, if what has been said about events last year is true, I’m half hoping he actually does go ‘hands on’ with someone. There was probably a case for assault last year. But it was only against a ‘little person’.

        Also, for the record, both KS and MO are one party recording states.

        March 21, 2016
        • Bibliotheca Servare #

          Dingdingdingding! We have a winner! Lol. I was born and raised in Missouri, and if I hadn’t moved to NC 4 months ago, I’d probably be going to MidAmerican(con?) and given the insanity of last year, I’d probably never have my audio recording device turned off! These imbeciles hate to have their insanity recorded for use in future litigation and/or mockery. Thankfully, they have no choice in MO *or* KS! I personally would recommend all sane persons at *minimum* have a recording device running when awake and actually in proximity to lunatics and psychopaths like MRK, PN-H, TN-H, Laura Resnick, et al. You never regret *having* a legally made record of a personal interaction with people like that. No, you only ever regret *not* having proof that such a person is lying about your behavior/words. All that aside, I’m glad to know The Impaler (interesting note: my phone just tried to autocorrect “Impaler” to “Impala”) won’t be alone on her perilous quest. Heh. 🙂

          March 21, 2016
    • That’s the traditional Progressive way for a woman to get ahead, isn’t it? Marry someone imortant? Like famous progressive Hillary Clinton?

      March 25, 2016
  10. The thing I find simply -fascinating- is how all these authors suddenly can’t stand being on the Sad Puppies Slate (egad, a SLATE!!1!)… but the recommendations of their works have been accumulating on the OPEN REC LIST for months and months.

    If they were serious, wouldn’t they have told us to fuck off before now? Funny how they all come out of the woodwork all concerned only after they get a little marketing pop from making the odious Sad Puppies list.

    Incidentally, I’m not voting for Scalzi no matter what anybody says. He’s a twerp. He can take comfort in his three million bucks, he’s getting zippo from me.

    March 21, 2016
    • Christopher M. Chupik #

      They weren’t paying attention, apparently.

      March 21, 2016
      • BobtheRegisterredFool #

        Which, again, raises questions about the depth and sincerity of their opposition. It suggests that some of them were simply unaware of Sad Puppies until crybullies brought it to their attention.

        March 21, 2016
        • Yeah, I’m not buying the “I was unaware!” theme from these clowns. If they know who the Puppies are now that they’ve been listed, they knew who we were before.

          Personally, I count this ‘outrage’ as a major win. The whole point of SP4 is to kick them in the balls again, and given the braying I’d say we found the target.

          March 21, 2016
          • BobtheRegisterredFool #

            March 21, 2016
    • The odd thing is that they aren’t doing something like:

      “I appreciate the outpouring of support from my fans. Given that the Hugo votes have become increasingly strident over the years, I’ve decided to withdraw my name from consideration. If chosen, I will not run; if elected, I will decline the prize, and so forth and so on. “What I really appreciate is that you liked this enough for a nomination. To an author, that’s worth more than any prize.”

      March 21, 2016
      • It would be classier, Kevin. But, that would mean they’d have to give up a priceless opportunity for virtue signaling, posing and other SJW behaviors.

        March 21, 2016
  11. adventuresfantastic #

    c4c

    March 21, 2016
  12. Matthew #

    And the people who put John on that ‘slate’ (because it is a simple, open, transparent count of votes, the voters are the people who put you there, John) – are, according to John Scalzi, assholes. So: following logically: In other words John says his readers, readers that liked his work and voted for it, are assholes

    March 21, 2016
    • aacid14 #

      Or he is surrounded by mirrors…

      March 21, 2016
      • he hangs around with Will Wheaton …

        March 21, 2016
  13. Airboy #

    Politely asking to be removed from a nomination list is one thing. I don’t have any problems with that. Likewise, those who make a recommendation list can agree to remove the name – or not. No problem with that either.

    But impugning the motives of a totally open process and then insulting them? Wow! Either ignorant or insulting the reader (Scalzi). I had purchased three Scalzi books in the past. Some were good, others not. But calling someone who recommended your work on an open forum vulgarities is beyond the pale. You are going to have to write something that is uniquely wonderful to get my money in the future. I can understand his hatred for Rabid Puppies, but not Sad.

    March 21, 2016
    • BobtheRegisterredFool #

      It is normal for a white supremacist eugenicist, who supports Hillary Clinton and the ongoing genocide targeted at the urban poor, to oppose both Sad and Rabid Puppies.

      March 21, 2016
  14. Airboy #

    This is a comment on the statistical analysis.

    1] I think you are over-reacting. Data can be made anonymous. Doing a statistical analysis on a potential change in a voting mechanism is reasonable.

    2] As long as the results cannot be tied to any one person, allowing people to do an analysis of consumer data is commonplace in business. Really, really common in academic business research published in journals.

    3] But the proof that the analysis is reasonable is letting other individuals qualified in statistics replicate the work. This is what happens in “good social science.” Sharing data, after the fact, with qualified researchers and allowing replication is essential to having any confidence in the results.

    4] I’ve published close to a 100 scholarly papers. I’ve had others replicate my analysis, ask for original (made anonymous) data, ask for questionnaires and copies of methodology, etc…… I’ve even published papers on why replication is so important and tested the ability to replicate findings in my field of study. Replication is at the heart of science.

    5] It is especially important that the individuals who do the replication are truly “independent” from the original researchers. Having their friends, graduate students, etc….. replicate something is not that valuable because of potential bias.

    6] I doubt if I have time to do this, but I’m sure that someone can be found who:
    a] Has considerable expertise in statistics
    b] Who is a SF fan not tied to any publisher
    c] Who understand the review and replication process
    Could be found to replicate any results.

    7] If the study authors, and WorldCon say “trust us, trust the researchers, no need to replicate” then I would probably have great distrust for the research. But before the fact, I think you are over-reacting.

    8] I voted for the Hugos for the first time in 2015. As long as my name is removed, replaced with a random number, and then sorted, I have great difficulty seeing any harm to myself from doing an aggregate data analysis on vote patterns and only reporting the data in aggregate form. I have to go through human subjects collecting data at work, and it is hard to see the “harm” here if rational procedures are followed.

    Hope this helps. I’m an expert in stats and in replication in social science and am trying to be helpful. I posted something similar at 770 and many said “he may be a puppy – despite qualifications only an accepted Trufan could ever do any analysis.

    March 21, 2016
    • BobtheRegisterredFool #

      This post is in a series that goes back years..

      I think that when Freer mentions objections to whether the data can be made anonymous, he is quoting rather than endorsing the objections. These concerns were raised earlier when organizations with the data decided not release the data to the public. IIRC, before the refusal, someone had promised the release that data.

      RE: 7. Again IIRC, statements that are at least similar have been made. The investigators themselves have some idea of what they ought not say. I think some of the WorldCon organizations have been less careful, and some of the partisans much less careful.

      March 21, 2016
      • There are some real issues with “anonymizing” data. It’s reasonably easy to do if all you have is the raw voting data set, but becomes troublesome if there are external information sources.

        Scenario #1: Bob Phan casts his votes, then immediately posts “I just voted” to Twitter. If the data set includes a time stamp, this would obviously makes Bob somewhat more identifiable (perhaps uniquely so, if it were a low-traffic period).

        Scenario #2: Alice Phan posts “I just voted for Trans-Gendered Tomb Pirates of Tantra, Supernumerary Schlock, and If You Were a Were-Crab Louse, My Love! Yay, us!”. When you look at the data set, you note that the only person who voted for those three stories also voted for Parking Lot Attendants of Gor: Moving Violations. Oops.

        There are other scenarios.

        March 21, 2016
        • Robin Munn #

          I would see nothing inconsistent in someone voting for Trans-Gendered Womb Pirates of Tantra and Parking Lot Attendants of Gor: Moving Violations.

          … Oh, you said “Tomb Pirates”. Never mind; I’ll show myself out.

          (Seriously, I misread that TWICE as “Womb Pirates”, and only saw my mistake when I copied-and-pasted the title into this comment.)

          March 21, 2016
          • I dunno, Robin… the Womb Pirates misread makes for a more fascinating title, methinks.

            March 22, 2016
            • If anyone wants to run with it, be my guest. 🙂

              March 22, 2016
              • One of the more bizarre things to come out of my Ichthyology days was the existence of inter-uterine sibling cannibalism in the larger Carcharhinidae

                March 22, 2016
                • Brrrrr…..

                  Yeah, sharks, but still…. Brrrr….

                  March 22, 2016
                • Robin Munn #

                  Sharks have uteri?

                  (Looks it up)

                  … Huh. Not all fish lay eggs; some (but not all) sharks bear live young. Learn something new every day!

                  Incidentally, Dave, I just bought the Baen monthly bundle that includes Changeling’s Island. Only three-quarters available, and now I can’t wait for April 4th (or was it 3rd?) when I’ll get to read the rest of it. And I’m already salivating for the sequel, if there’s going to be one.

                  March 22, 2016
            • Stephen J. #

              To be followed up by Womb Pirates II: A Womb With A View.

              March 22, 2016
              • snowcrash #

                Meh. Personally I thought that the prequel/ reboot Rise of the Womb Raider was far superior.

                March 22, 2016
        • Argh. Not Supernumerary Schlock. I can’t see Sergeant Schlock being in anything at all an SJW would promote.

          March 22, 2016
          • BobtheRegisterredFool #

            It can be argued that Howard Tayler is: a) a SJW b) a racist.

            The latter is harder to establish.

            Ted Cruz is ethnically Cuban, Italian, and Irish. Last fall when that WaPo? cartoonist drew the Cruz daughters as organ grinder monkeys (a traditional way of dehumanizing Italians), Tayler was asked his opinion.

            Which was more or less
            as a parent, something negative
            as a cartoonist, something positive
            as a human being, Cruz is the real monster

            If one interprets it using SJW rules, Tayler does not think Italians, Irish or Hispanics are humans.

            March 23, 2016
    • aacid14 #

      Looking at what they are attempting to prove, namely that EPH (better translated as Out of many slates, five) will lessen the potential of a sweep by slates, the simple use of historical data seems a poor fit. If they wanted to do a slate a program to do slates of varying size, consistency and percentage could easily be made using excel. This would allow a monte carlo style approach that could also look at other what ifs that this could engender. For instance, “The Martian” and “Star Wars” will likely both be finalists this year. But because they are all likely to be on the list of many could that be seen as a slate and votes decreased simply because the voter saw only two movies, or only thought two valid.

      In addition, last year you had a groundswell of nominations and votes. But if you go back to pre puppy years where you had 500, how does that affect things. Or if it gets larger. Getting actual data just gets a snapshot and the question is whether correlation is higher because of more votes, because of rabids, or what.

      In the last year there has been so much obfuscation over what is or is not actually happen that a lot of people have simply started to assume malice on the part of the PKs. And if the report of calling puppies filth from MAC staff is true…I tend to agree.

      March 21, 2016
      • I’ve been slowly working on such an excel file. But, alas, life is making it difficult. (As is only minimal macro skill.)

        March 21, 2016
    • “Data can be made anonymous.”

      Well, either the data is really anonymous or it isn’t.

      If it is, there’s no real excuse for not releasing it to other researchers.

      If it isn’t, it should likely never have been given to Schneier and Quinn, either, since I highly doubt the attendees signed the IRB waivers that would be standard procedure in such a situation. Such waivers normally (always, in my experience) also allow the subject to opt out of the research entirely.

      March 21, 2016
    • Airboy
      1] I think you are over-reacting. Data can be made anonymous.

      Yes, it can. But after Glenn Glazer promised to release the anonymized data from Sasquan Hugo voting, several months later they reneged, and claimed the data “couldn’t be made anonymous”.

      A totally BS claim, that made them look like dishonest hacks with something to hide.

      The fact that they’ve now given the data to two people, one of whom is clearly an unprofessional partisan, just makes the whole thing worse.

      Sasquan can release the data to everybody like they promised the Business meeting they would, or they can get a world of crap deservedly dumped all over them.

      March 21, 2016
      • “The fact that they’ve now given the data to two people…just makes the whole thing worse.”

        Both of whom are associated with a federally-funded academic institution that has Rules about such things. Especially since, as McCarty states, they’ve apparently written a paper that’s “under academic review”. I will be looking forward to seeing copies of their IRB application and subsequent approval, particularly any statements they made on their application with respect to the anonymity (or lack thereof) of the data set.

        Unless Harvard’s policy differs markedly from that of other institutions, the IRB requirement will apply to all research performed by university-affiliated personnel, regardless of whether the research is an “official” university project or not (otherwise someone who wanted to do questionable research would just set up “Bob’s Research Lab” on the side).

        March 22, 2016
      • So I’m wondering here — are they straight-out ballot stuffing? Because if it’s gotten that far, we might as well just declare the Hugos dead, and start our own. And then ignore the ex-Hugos, as they become more and more just a joke to knowledgable fen. (“Oh look! Scalzi just gave an award to his own dump of the evening of July 11th for Best Evacuation!”)

        March 25, 2016
    • TRX #

      If someone expected their vote to be confidential, I’d understand the need for secrecy.

      A lot of potential fiddling would evaporate if all the votes were public information, though. Who would even care what you voted for, as long as you weren’t going against the wink-wink-nudge-nudge or slate recommendations?

      March 22, 2016
      • Mary #

        As we can see, any number of people care who votes for what. Let’s not give them a chance to demonstrate what they will do with the information.

        March 22, 2016
  15. aacid14 #

    After reading of the events last year, I see absolutely no reason I should make the 5 hr drive to KCK. I’ve sworn off one con already outside SFF because they decided a political indoctrination session would be an appropriate panel and that wearing clothing denouncing opponents of said politics as inhuman was acceptable. And seeing as that was an allowed and accepted panel I did not dare actually complain lest I be evicted for some nefarious breaking of rules for being different. I am currently concerned as to what the writing track at another con will look like as the GoH is a Member of SFWA and Hugo winner from ’12 and really don’t need an entire track of how only “punching up” can be humorous…Or how when I lol at how Hugos are the “Best of all SFF” I’m being evil.

    I see no reason to make this effort to get insulted again. Plus none of the authors I read would even consider being involved in the farce that this has all become. I honestly think we need to start the “Dragons” or similar with SF/F separate and actually honor all of the media as opposed to simply being the ‘Best of Tor and Dr. Who’ Compilation. Plus DragonCon only had one pedophile attached to it and they fought him out.

    As to the start, I don’t have an issue with authors advertising they are nominatable. And as long as the author does not vote for himself I couldn’t care less. I am more concerned over publishing houses paying for memberships and such. Much like you cannot blame a Chevy wrench turner for buying a Chevy when the company offers him a discount, I cannot blame a publishing employee for reading more of his house published media.

    March 21, 2016
  16. First, and as I said elsewhere, I am glad that Sad Puppies 4 is so far this is everything Sad Puppies 3 was not, namely open and transparent. Unfortunately, it seems the current group has not made as clean a break from the past as one would have liked.

    Specifically, several people, on finding out that they were on your reading list, asked to be taken off. One of those people (John Scalzi) had very publicly recused himself from the Hugos well prior to your list being generated. Rather than acting like adults and graciously saying “okay, we’ll pull you,” your group has issued various pissy blog posts (such as this one) about how wrong these requests were.

    This frankly baffles me. Generally speaking, if you nominate somebody for an award and they say “no thanks” the polite, normal and human response would be “okay, no problem, we’ll nominate something else.” One might add “but we really liked your stuff, you should reconsider.” Anything else is simply being rude.

    Further, suggesting that turning down an award nomination is “insulting to your fans” is baffling. I suppose their are cultures in which one must accept any gift offered, but I didn’t think we lived in one.

    March 21, 2016
    • We’re all dancing around a question here that badly needs to be asked: *Why* would anyone want to turn down an award recommendation? A recommendation is not a gift. It’s a vote of confidence; a fan letter, if you will. When someone refuses a vote of confidence, it starts getting suspicious. When someone goes halfway into hysterics over it, it starts getting *mighty* suspicious.

      I’ll put forth my theory here: The people who want to be removed from the SP4 recommendations list are *terrified* that a scorched-earth campaign will be mounted against anyone on the list. Last year I read posts listing people to vote against, simply because they were recommended by SP3. I’m pretty sure it will happen again this year. Promising writers who are just getting some traction are afraid that their own side–the people they mostly align with ideologically–will deliberately kill their chances for an award nomination, or, if nominated, will no-award their category into irrelevance.

      This is not an indictment of the Sad Puppies. This is an indictment of the people who will do anything to avoid the humiliation they suffered last year, even if it means damaging the careers of innocent bystanders. There is no reason that writers should fear being on *anybody’s* recommendations list…unless someone gives them hints that being on that list will be used against them.

      Kate and her colleagues have met all reasonable objections to SP3. What I think she and everyone else in the SFF world deserve is a pledge that *no action of any kind* will be taken against writers on the SP4 list. This would include any “vote against” lists and any mention of using No Award to kill a category that may include SP4-recommended individuals. A little courtesy at the ceremony itself would be good, too.

      No bullying. No shaming. No condemnations. Courtesy toward all. What’s not to like?

      March 21, 2016
      • Well, in Scalzi’s case I’ll merely quote him: But this year, when it comes to awards, I want to take a break and celebrate the excellent work that other people are doing, and who deserve attention for that work. My year’s already been, well, pretty good, hasn’t it. I’ve had more than enough good fortune from 2015 and I don’t feel like I need right now to ask for another helping.

        Cat Valente, on her blog (no links to avoid spam filter – Google is your friend) said “It all comes down to whether this recommendation list is a list or a slate.

        Right now, it doesn’t look like a slate. Right now, it looks like a list complied by people with extremely wide-ranging tastes and interests. Right now, I’m inclined to try to mend fences across fandom in whatever little way I can by giving them the benefit of the doubt that this is all in good faith–because I want to be given the benefit of the doubt that I act in good faith. So for right now, that’s what I’m going to do. I am going to believe in the better angels of our–and Puppy–nature. I’m going to choose to believe that they looked at the thousand suggestions of ways to recommend books that would not run afoul of the spirit of the Hugos and adjusted their methods accordingly. I’m going to choose to believe that the political rhetoric of the Puppy movement is a thing of the past, and from here on out, it will be about what each and every one of us said it should be about–good books. Nothing else.”

        Alastair Reynolds said (again, Google it) “At this point it’s of no concern to me whether this is a slate or a set of recommendations. Given the taint left by last year’s antics, I don’t care for any work of mine to be associated with any list curated by the Sad Puppies.”

        So, the “why” seems clear to me. One person wants somebody else to have a shot, one person wasn’t clear on how the list was created and, now that she knows what happens, is okay with it, and one person just doesn’t want to monkey around with it.

        March 21, 2016
      • Jeff, this is what is what I was trying to say, but better expressed.

        March 21, 2016
      • “The people who want to be removed from the SP4 recommendations list are *terrified* that a scorched-earth campaign will be mounted against anyone on the list. Last year I read posts listing people to vote against, simply because they were recommended by SP3. I’m pretty sure it will happen again this year. Promising writers who are just getting some traction are afraid that their own side–the people they mostly align with ideologically–will deliberately kill their chances for an award nomination, or, if nominated, will no-award their category into irrelevance.”

        This thesis actually makes a lot of sense to me – and in a lot of ways, I am on the outside, looking in from the perspective of an indy author with only a passing consumer interest in reading science fiction and fantasy.

        To me — getting a nom for any sort of award going?That would be gold, a serious, meaningful compliment from readers and fans, exposure to a wider audience, even nice bullet point on the writerly resume…

        It’s kind of horrifying to thing about, actually – that your writing career might be killed for ideological reasons.

        March 21, 2016
        • Why do you think that the whole Sad Puppies thing started? People’s writing careers are being killed for ideological reasons.

          March 22, 2016
    • Reality Observer #

      He’d better start having his own books printed, then – and make only direct sales, in person, so that he can be sure his work only goes to the right people.

      So long as he is mass-marketing his writing – sorry, he has no control over who buys his books, over who likes his books, or who says his books are good.

      He can certainly turn down an actual nomination – or the award itself – and therefore tell the Hugo nominators and voters that they are not the right people. Trash that he doesn’t want reading his tripe.

      Which will, in the long run, lead to his having his own books printed and then making only direct sales, in person, to the right people. Which will be a good thing. I look forward to hearing about his bankruptcy filing.

      March 21, 2016
      • Neil Gaiman has turned down several Hugo nominations, most recently in 2014. (Nominated for The Ocean at the End of the Lane see PDF pg 19 at http://www.thehugoawards.org/content/pdf/2014HugoStatistics.pdf). Does that mean he thinks “Hugo nominators and voters that they are not the right people. Trash that he doesn’t want reading his tripe?”

        Again, why is it so hard to accept that people might not want an award? For that matter, why does it matter? If you offer somebody a cup of coffee and they say no thanks, do you argue with them or just say okay?

        March 21, 2016
        • It matters critically. There are very few reasons for not wanting a recommendation for an award. For an experienced writer who has already won awards, it might be to give someone else a chance. Someone who has a hand in the awards process or a recommendations list might also choose not to be eligible, for conflict of interest. But if the reason is in fact fear of reprisals, something is happening that shouldn’t, and whatever that is needs to be searched out and stopped.

          March 21, 2016
          • Matthew #

            If I recall, Sir Pterry turned down a nom (his first after 30+books ???? How the hell did that happen?) because he was already GoH, and he didn’t want the added stress.

            March 21, 2016
            • Civilis #

              The way to handle it is to treat it as a polite mistake. If you don’t want to be nominated, politely decline, with conciliatory words for the people that like your book enough to nominate you. Don’t pick a fight with the people that like your book.

              As Kevin Cheek suggested above:
              The odd thing is that they aren’t doing something like:

              “I appreciate the outpouring of support from my fans. Given that the Hugo votes have become increasingly strident over the years, I’ve decided to withdraw my name from consideration. If chosen, I will not run; if elected, I will decline the prize, and so forth and so on. “What I really appreciate is that you liked this enough for a nomination. To an author, that’s worth more than any prize.”

              It’s important because Brad got yelled at last time for not having a transparent process. This time, Kate ran the process in an organized and very transparent manner, and now gets yelled at because the process isn’t perfect. The people that are yelling want to find fault. If we prune the list at all, the process won’t be transparent, so we’ll get yelled at. If we don’t prune the list, we’ll have people that don’t want to be on it, so we’ll get yelled at.

              The way you can tell those requesting off the list are doing so for political reasons (whether dislike of the puppies or fear of the anti-puppies) is because they’re not recognizing it as a polite mistake. They need to loudly and vocally yell at the people that liked their work enough to nominate it so they can maintain their status with the anti-puppies.

              March 21, 2016
              • snowcrash #

                It’s important because Brad got yelled at last time for not having a transparent process. This time, Kate ran the process in an organized and very transparent manner, and now gets yelled at because the process isn’t perfect.

                Well. I’m glad that we’re getting to some common ground, in that SP3 wasn’t in fact done in a transparent manner. Only took us about a year to get here. Progress!

                BtW, I do think that framing (i) Alistair Reynolds polite request to Kate here, (ii) Cat Valente’s detailed post on her concerns (one that in fact begins with an apology for her initial kneejerk reaction on Twitter), and (iii) Scalzi’s post reiterating his opposition to *slates* and his withdrawal from awards consideration as “getting yelled at” is being willfully oversensitive. YMM(O?)V

                March 21, 2016
                • Snowcrash, a man who somehow does not understand the use of modifiers.

                  March 21, 2016
              • Civilis said:

                “They need to loudly and vocally yell at the people that liked their work enough to nominate it so they can maintain their status with the anti-puppies.”

                This. This to the 77th power. It’s about fear that their fellow tribe members will turn on them for not supporting the tribe vociferously enough. In other words, reprisals.

                March 21, 2016
                • Which, of course, strongly implies that they don’t really like or trust their supposed ideological allies, either.

                  March 21, 2016
                  • Perhaps they figure they can’t put down the monster(s) they’ve summoned. Oops.

                    March 22, 2016
                    • “Do not call up what you can not put down.” (some guy who use to be on the fantasy awards but isn’t any more because he failed to anticipate what the dwarves who followed the giants would find ideologically-progressive).

                      March 25, 2016
                  • In tribal psychology, there is no such thing as trust. There is only fury, and fear.

                    March 22, 2016
                • It’s about fear that their fellow tribe members will turn on them for not supporting the tribe vociferously enough. In other words, reprisals.

                  Or we could just take people at their word. (I know, what a novel concept.)

                  It’s the Golden Rule, people – if you want to be taken at your word for your motivations, then you need to take others at their word for their motivations.

                  March 22, 2016
                  • Civilis #

                    It’s the Golden Rule, people – if you want to be taken at your word for your motivations, then you need to take others at their word for their motivations.

                    Wait, after countless examples of us not being taken at our word, some in this very thread, and often spun into outright slander against us, now you’re telling us we need to take you at your word? Pot, meet kettle.

                    Reasonable people can disagree what standards a hastily compiled one-man recommendation list needs to be considered transparent and open. By your logic, why are you not granting us the benefit of the doubt and taking us at our word? Why should we trust you, when you’re at best complicity standing by when our express motivations have been repeatedly not just ignored but slandered? What magic is going to compel people that have been willfully rewriting our motivations to their own twisted worldview to all of a sudden start treating us as merely people with different but valid opinions?

                    It’s a recommendation list, compiled by a set of rules and standards. Even if the authors don’t want the award, the recommendation that these books are good books to read is still valuable. That’s all the award is supposed to be, an aggregated recommendation that this awarded book is the best, and these nominated books are good.

                    March 22, 2016
                    • Paul Inefan #

                      Because we know you’re a liar, Gerrib.

                      March 22, 2016
            • Tom Galloway #

              Incorrect; his nomination was in 2005, and he’d been GOH the previous year. His core reason, which he told to a few people including myself (and asked to keep it private, but since his death it’s come out), was that he’d had heart problems that year and had medical worries about the stress affecting his heart.

              March 21, 2016
        • Pretending that “I’ve already won enough awards, please give it to someone else.” and “How dare you racist, sexist, homophobic scum put my name on your filthy list!” are the same thing is disingenuous even for you, Gerrib.

          Just who do you think you’re fooling when you come up with tripe like this? Obviously not us. Yourself, maybe?

          March 21, 2016
        • TRX #

          Because the award isn’t about the author, it’s about the book.

          Just like a review on Amazon, the nomination is based on what the reader thought about the book. Hopefully, not what they think about the author, their politics, or their little dog.

          Virtue-signaling over a nomination is the same thing as throwing a public tantrum over a 1-star review. That is, silly.

          March 22, 2016
        • Alex #

          Getting a little vertigo from the goalpost shifting. Your original question was… let’s see….what WAS your question?

          You commented that you didn’t understand why the SP 4 organizers wouldn’t pull people off the recommended reading list, if requested. Let’s be clear that this is a list of works that anyone could post to, if they thought a work was award-worthy – not actual Hugo nominations. Kate’s pretty clear on that. She says, “My policy is as follows: I will not insult the people who purchased and read the works, and felt them to be award-worthy, by removing anyone’s name or work from The List. I will, however, update The List with an asterisk beside the name/work of those who contact me directly to indicate that they would prefer not to have their work purchased, read, liked, or nominated without the creator’s prior approval.Readers and nominators may decide as they will.” Her house, her rules. Simple as that. You like a good asterisk, don’t you?

          Jeff Duntemann asks a very good question. Why would anyone want to turn down an award recommendation? You respond with part of Scalzi’s comments (you missed where he referred to Sad Puppies as assholes). You also skipped Valente’s earlier Twitter, “For the record, I was not asked and I do not consent to be on the Sad Puppies List. I am furious.” Reynolds says, “Given the taint left by last year’s antics, I don’t care for any work of mine to be associated with any list curated by the Sad Puppies”. It’s clear that their angst is not about being on a list, it’s about being on a SAD PUPPIES list. So the question stands – why the upset about being on a list that says, “someone read/watched this, and thought it was good enough to consider for an award?” I think Mr. Duntemann is correct.

          Instead of trying to tell Kate and the other organizers of SP4 how they should run their group, why don’t you lead the way and say, as Mr. Duntemann proposed, that ” *no action of any kind* will be taken against writers on the SP4 list. This would include any “vote against” lists and any mention of using No Award to kill a category that may include SP4-recommended individuals. A little courtesy at the ceremony itself would be good, too.” In other words, do something positive with matters within your control.

          March 21, 2016
          • Well, Cat Valente is not turning down her Sad Puppies recommendation, as you can see from the quote. Scalzi recused himself months ago, so can be excused for being irritated at being added. You’ll have to talk to Reynolds about his opinion.

            My original point remains this – if somebody asks to be excluded for whatever reason the polite thing to do is exclude them. Doing otherwise is a jerk move. It doesn’t matter what anybody else did (two wrongs don’t make a right) and by getting pissy about these requests the Sad Puppies sacrifice any claim to the moral high ground.

            My record on voting is clear, and I intend to do exactly what I did last year, namely vote on the merit of the work regardless of how it got on the final list.

            March 21, 2016
            • Alex #

              Thank you for your opinion. It really would have been more accurately lodged at the SP4 website. Ms. Paulk will doubtless give it the same consideration she has given to all other comments she has received.

              Since you won’t honestly address Mr. Duntemann’s questions, can you be done here?

              March 21, 2016
            • Alex #

              Oh, in case you’re still here. Your comparison between offering a cup of coffee and including a name on a list of recommended reading is wrong. The recommendation requires nothing from the nominee – not even their awareness, as has been demonstrated by the nominees just now figuring out they were on the list.

              SP4 asks for nothing and expects nothing from those on the list. The names on the list are all individuals who have put their work out in public, for the public to read/watch/play. To have those authors/artists declare that certain members of the public are so offensive that they should not be able to pass authors/artists names around….why are you here, complaining about Sad Puppies “pissy blogs”? Why are you here, trying to school Sad Puppies about adult behavior? Why aren’t you talking to THEM?

              Generally speaking, if one is nominated for an award, the polite, normal and human response would be “thank you, I’m glad you like my work”.

              You supporting their cries of horror and disdain is supporting the divisions in the genre. Don’t pretend you’re here for any other reason.

              March 21, 2016
              • Reality Observer #

                Well, I wouldn’t turn down coffee.

                But my response to someone offering me a cup of tea is “Oh, thank you. But I don’t drink tea.”

                Not “How dare you offer me that horrible beverage that is undoubtedly picked by slave Chinese laborers and full of pesticides to boot!”

                Nobody is being forced to drink the tea here. If the cup is placed in front of you – just don’t drink it. Besides, there’s PLENTY of KoolAid to go around over in your tiny piece of the country, John.

                March 22, 2016
          • TRX #

            The recommendations are from individuals. If Kate removed some of them “for reasons”, she’d be censoring the input process.

            Some people apparently apparently are uncomfortable without censorship.

            March 22, 2016
    • The Tor slates have never been open nor transparent. Indeed, their makers still deny they are making them, even though it’s now a fairly open secret that they exist. So you’re, basically, saying that Sad Puppies 4 has now most definitely ascended to a level of morality a quantum level above that of Tor.

      Aren’t you afraid that Tor might come down on you for this, Chris? You’re not showing enough loyalty to Big Brother.

      Further, suggesting that turning down an award nomination is “insulting to your fans” is baffling. I suppose their are cultures in which one must accept any gift offered, but I didn’t think we lived in one.

      It’s saying to the fans who offered you the award that you despise them to the point that you consider it an insult. This was an especially dumb move for Alastair Reynolds, who writes traditional space opera and most of whose fans are probably also Puppy sympathizers. I don’t think he’s going to get much love from the Dinosaur-Wishers.

      March 25, 2016
  17. Mike Glyer #

    Thanks, for not “selectively quoting” Dave McCarty’s letter, and only interrupting every single sentence he wrote with a boldfaced rebuttal three times as long. Too bad you don’t trust your readers to even wait to fully quote him before telling them what to think.

    March 21, 2016
    • Nathan #

      It’s a Fisk, a device used by Larry Correia and Jim Hines last year, as well as many others in the Puppies and anti-Puppies crowds during last year’s events, many of which you personally linked to in your daily roundup.

      So what about this one use of a common blogging device has you hot and bothered?

      March 21, 2016
      • Nathan #

        Actually, given previous conversations elsewhere, I do have to ask if this is really Mike Glyer and not someone else claiming the name. Normally, he posts with more restraint.

        March 21, 2016
        • Reality Observer #

          Sign of desperation. Patrick probably told him to get out of the house more. The chicanery is only getting more and more obvious to more and more people.

          The Hugos will last only until we finally get fed up with trying to “fix” them (which, even if successful, will only be temporary – the rats always just breed again after the exterminators leave). When we finally decide to establish an honest alternative, they will go the same way as all of the other ones (Nobel, Pulitzer, Man Booker, etc.) that have been infested by the Left. A meaningless award, given to irrelevant people, by ignorant elitists.

          March 21, 2016
      • Mike Glyer #

        Baltimore newspaperman H.L. Mencken once wrote that it only makes sense to spend one’s life sitting in a brewery drinking beer, but once in awhile he couldn’t resist the temptation to rush outside to break a bottle over someone’s head.

        Which is to say, nobody really needed me to point out what Dave did.

        March 21, 2016
        • Nathan #

          No, just pointing out your hypocrisy and selective outrage.

          March 21, 2016
          • Mike Glyer #

            My outrage isn’t nearly as selective as you give credit for.

            March 21, 2016
            • Mail Curtain #

              I left a little bon mot for you at your site, Mr. Glyer. It shows in detail exactly how your coven of propagandists lied about my comments at Reynolds’ site. If you don’t publish it, maybe it can be left here.

              March 21, 2016
        • Alex #

          Absolutely true. No one here needed it. Perhaps you’re used to your usual readers, who do need it, and also need to be led to how to think/feel about it, too. Readers here don’t need that, either.

          March 21, 2016
    • You, of course, would never dream of excerpting a sentence or two out of context and following it up with a snarky comment.

      Dave Freer posted the entire letter to which he was responding. Let us know when you adopt a similar policy.

      March 21, 2016
      • Mike Glyer #

        “You, of course, would never dream of excerpting a sentence or two out of context and following it up with a snarky comment. ”

        You’re new to the internet, aren’t you.

        March 21, 2016
        • No, I’ve been using it since it was called the ARPAnet, actually, and used to run Usenet back when the feeds were distributed over dialup modems.

          I just don’t think that the rules of ethical behavior change just because one is sitting behind a keyboard. I recognize that this is a minority opinion, but it’s hardly a new one.

          Now, do you have anything relevant to say?

          March 21, 2016
          • Mike Glyer #

            Is it ethical to pretend that using ARPAnet is the same thing as using the internet?

            Come to think of it, I also doubt it was ethical to use the ARPAnet the same way as the internet. Or so I gathered from the people I knew who had accounts on it.

            March 21, 2016
            • Matthew #

              There’s more to the Net than the Web, my friend.
              TCPIP – learn it, love it.

              March 21, 2016
            • “Is it ethical to pretend that using ARPAnet is the same thing as using the internet?”

              You’re a real piece of work, Glyer. No, I don’t recall seeing any explicit ARPAnet rules about deceptive quoting (nor any against cannibalism, or murder, or rape, or….). That’s more or less my point, innit?

              I’m sure that you were doing the same schtick back when you were using a mimeograph. So what?

              March 21, 2016
            • Robin Munn #

              Doctor Locketopus wrote: “No, I’ve been using [the Internet] since it was called the ARPAnet, actually, and used to run Usenet back when the feeds were distributed over dialup modems.”

              You responded: “Is it ethical to pretend that using ARPAnet is the same thing as using the internet?”

              You know, I kept on hearing people claim that you selectively quote and distort things, but had never actually gone over to your blog to see for myself, so it was always hearsay for me.

              But now I’ve seen it with my own eyes.

              My goodness, man, do you even care in the slightest about making sure you’re getting your opponents’ arguments right, rather than arguing with strawmen? Why would you bother to distort a simple sentence like that? Seriously — why would you even BOTHER? What’s the POINT?

              March 21, 2016
              • Matthew #

                I figure he hasn’t got anything better to do. That… leads to some interesting and kind of sad thoughts about his personal and professional lives.

                March 21, 2016
              • Next up, Glyer starts saying I claimed to be the King of Usenet or something because I said I “ran Usenet”, even though anyone who wasn’t engaged in willful distortion would clearly understand that I meant “ran a Usenet news server”. ‘Cause that’s just the kind of guy he is.

                March 21, 2016
                • Matthew #

                  ((remembering some of the various alt.binaries usenet groups I ran across back in the 1990s))

                  I’m just gonna back away slowly now…

                  March 21, 2016
                  • I never carried any of the binaries groups. My cohorts and I were pulling the feed over dialup UUCP, so that just wasn’t going to happen. The binaries groups weren’t all that big then, anyway. I gather that in its later years Usenet became more or less dedicated to binaries, but I’d moved on long before then. In my time it was almost exclusively text-based discussion.

                    This was long enough ago that we freaked out when a full feed, the whole shebang, started exceeding 20 MB/day. Now there are web pages larger than that. 🙂

                    March 21, 2016
                    • TRX #

                      I ran a freenet in the early ’90s, on dialup. We didn’t get any sort of broadband in my area until just a few years ago.

                      Heck, I still have my Denizens of Doom patch, and a dusty old backup probably has archives from alt.flame…

                      March 22, 2016
                    • Yeah…for a while, I ran a major Usenet feed into Houston. That was in the days when a full feed could be done over a 2400 baud modem and handled by Microport System V/AT on a 286.

                      Some things have changed a lot since then. Some haven’t.

                      March 22, 2016
                    • I never got a patch, but I too am a Denizen!

                      March 23, 2016
                  • You do know you can still access some of those Usenet groups through Google.

                    March 21, 2016
                    • And Google likes to pretend that they belong to Google, as “Google Groups”.

                      March 23, 2016
              • Robin, I think he’s so angry because he thought he’d managed to put his manipulation of the truth over everyone. That he could sanctimoniously claim ‘just quoting’ and ‘I’m just a reporter’… and get away with it, while pulling strings and distorting the truth. He’s moderately bright and has fooled a lot of people over the years. He’s used to thinking of himself as an eminence grise – able to influence and manipulate the whole field. I see through him like a pane of glass, and he really doesn’t like that.

                March 21, 2016
                • Robin Munn #

                  And so because he’s angry at you, he takes out that anger by distorting some random comment on your site that wasn’t even political. How does that make ANY sense?

                  … Actually, you know what? If that ever starts to make sense to me (other than in an intellectual, “Well, I can’t relate to it, but that’s apparently how he’s thinking” way), lock me up, because it’ll be the first sign that I’m turning into a sociopath.

                  March 21, 2016
                • I would guess that Glyer has been using this “selective quoting out of context” tactic for a very long time. Unfortunately for him it doesn’t work nearly as well nowadays, when the original text is available for all to read at the click of a mouse. In the old days, finding the original text might’ve required many days and/or several trips to the library (assuming it was available at all).

                  Unfortunately, he seems to be something of a rhetorical one-trick pony — stir shit via selective quoting, lather, repeat.

                  Since it’s the only arrow in his journalistic quiver, it’s not surprising that he gets prickly when someone calls him on it.

                  How many Hugo Awards has this guy won again?

                  March 22, 2016
                  • I think he’s been nominated something like 48 times, and won quite a lot. At which point you have to start asking the hard questions of him and the voters.
                    Of him:1)Why do you accept nomination over and over? It has no monetary value, and even its social value to those who prize it… what difference is there in saying ‘Oh I won the same frikken nomination 47 times or 48 times.’ To me you sound a prat both ways, but even if you value it it’s irrelevant 2)What kind of human being doesn’t say ‘I’m not accepting any more. It’s time someone else had a go? 3)The more of value it is to you, the more of value it has to have that award recognized and liked by as many and as wide a range as possible. I mean an award – like the Victoria Cross for example, has value to recipient and the family because everyone knows it, and everyone respects it. I mean…”I got 23 Hugo Awards!”
                    “Whut? is that a breakfast cereal?” Something that a few hundred people care and and the rest never heard of… of annually shrinking relevance, I’d be LEADING the sad puppies charge to get more populist authors from more walks of life involved. Instead… this guy seems to actually want it smaller and less relevant. WTF?
                    As for the guys who keep on nominating him 1)Why are you nominating a guy who HAS the damn honor (if you believe it is that), again? And again.
                    2)Don’t you see that his honor would be more valuable if he could say ‘Oh I have a Hugo’ – and everyone knew what that was? I mean surely if you think the guy deserved recognition, you’d want him to get the most possible? 3)if you thought it HAD vast recognition, surely that nomination by now is something you want to use to help lift new talent?
                    I understand -even if I regard the short-sighted greed and selfishness of Scalzi and the various log-rollers as unpleasant and dumb. They hope historical value and possibly some future great name that come along after they’ve managed to get theirs will give them a return, and in some cases a social and self-esteem boost, Some, sure, are too stupid and narcissistic to see beyond the immediate. But quite what drives Glyer and those who nominate him (unless they tell him and hope to benefit) again, and again… I don’t get it. The dumb is too much. There must be some reason…

                    His schtick is a bit more complex – he uses his little titles to play games and then selectively quotes, often deliberately avoiding context. The side he favors gets good quotes – even if the piece in context is drivel. The other side gets the opposite. He knows his low information followers rarely go and read the whole thing, but have a rage fest with him. I’d guess he is at least one or more of the sock-puppets stirring there.

                    March 23, 2016
                    • Nathan #

                      Glyer, as a previous member of Hugo marketing committees, should permanently recuse himself. Ethics and morality and all…

                      March 23, 2016
                    • Those sort of things are only for little people – according to his kind, right?

                      March 23, 2016
                    • snowcrash #

                      RE: Your 3rd paragraph – I may not be the best person to try this, as this will be my first time nominating. Regardless, and speaking only for myself (obvs):

                      1. Why are you nominating a guy who has that honour? – Same reason I’m nominating Lois McMaster Bujold, regardless of her numerous noms and wins – they’ve both put out work that were, in my opinion, quite comfortably among the best in their respective fields.

                      2. The fame of the Hugos – You’ve answered this yourself – I do think it’s a prestigious, and – among some of my circles at least – a well known award.

                      3. Why not new talent? – Happily, you can do both! There are 5 nomination slots, and I intend on using all of them as Fan Writer is a massive, *massive* field. Some of the best stuff I’ve seen last year are from long-timers like Mike Glyer, Eric Flint, and GRRM, so I can choose to recognise them. But that still leaves enough space for people like Mark Oshiro, or James Nicoll, or Alexandra Erin, and I can choose to honour them as well.

                      March 23, 2016
                    • Thank you for the timeous reminder and lesson in humility, Snowcrash. You know, you’re one of very few 770’s that I consider actually able to sometimes think beyond the group. That’s not huge flattery – 80% seem unable to think for themselves or unwilling to do so. About 10% are actively trying to manipulate – the remaining 10% actually do sometimes differ. The 80% in any age and place would camp-follow whoever is on top. They’d be burning witches in Salem, informing to red commissars in Russia in 1930, beating up Jews in 1934 Germany and telling you blacks were too stupid to rule themselves in 1964 South Africa. They’ll desert en masse when the tide turns, as it always does. I had decided that you were one of the few who actually thought about their positions.

                      Which led me into the fallacy of assuming you thought as I do (in method, not ideas) I try to understand how people think. It makes reaching common ground easier, or at least holding a rational discussion. It’s just very hard for me not approach things mathematically, logically and thinking moves ahead in consequences. And then I get people like Hyrosen who doesn’t get 25% is not more valuable than 75%, even if he is part of the 25%. Or Gerrib who just doesn’t seem to get elementary logic. And I have try to understand how they can function and try not to be impatient.
                      Look, trust me on this: I have no reason to lie, but no patience to explain the maths – ask Camestros – he’s capable enough for this – using one of your 5 votes unwisely is a substantitive disadvantage to the rest of the candidates. A ‘sympathy’ or emotive vote for someone you want to pat on the back, is actively damaging to the candidate you do want to win, particularly if that sympathy vote gets a lot of sympathy votes.
                      Secondly -try please to work the possible outcomes through. “I like Fred and vote for Fred who gets nominated as a result. Fred is popular with 6% of the possible voters – and actively disliked by the other 94% (who do not unite behind other candidates, but they really don’t like Fred.). What does this do… not me, but to others? What does this do to the future of my genre?

                      I keep saying this and I hope someday, some of you will listen. The Sad Puppies don’t need the Puppy Kickers. They don’t need to oblige you, You don’t matter much to them, in the overall scheme of their making a living. I’ve provided links showing you the economic situation in sf/fantasy. Ask the hard question. Does Larry Correia need you? No. I don’t even need you. I did this for the old pre-hopeless drunk Hugo.

                      On the other hand the Puppy Kickers need to move back to the center. You need the Sad Puppies support now (and you haven’t got it), and it’s only going get to worse. The publishers and authors in the Puppy Kicker camp have tried to put us out of business, and failed even as their own sales erode. If we start openly playing their game and divide sf… do the maths, Snowcrash. There are a handful of moderates, a handful of right wing authors and an even smaller handful of far right. There are hundreds of left wing and thousands of far left authors. But the audience – according to gallup is 76% to 24% left. The left authors survive on moderate and right buyers. Now look at your 5 nominees. Which – if any of those – will help the situation? Who will move things back toward the center, cool things down, be liked and listened to by those outside the far left? Alexandra Erin? Nicholl? Glyer? Oshiro? or Flint?

                      March 23, 2016
              • Alex #

                Thanks, Robin, for saying that so concisely.

                March 21, 2016
              • Patrick Chester #

                Well, strawmen don’t fight back so it’s easier.

                Just ask Dark Helmet. 😉

                March 22, 2016
            • Well you gathered wrong.
              (Former ARPAnet user)

              March 29, 2016
        • The Other Sean #

          No, I’m sure he’s seen plenty of your ilk polluting the internet over the past few decades. You should go back to living under a bridge.

          March 21, 2016
    • Alex #

      Dave’s readers are trusted to be able to read, consider and come to their own conclusions. Your readers are fed a selected quote, often out of context, followed by a comment from you, telling them what to think. Honesty is threatening to the File sycophants, isn’t it?

      March 21, 2016
    • I considered it. My post was already 3K long, so I decided against. I thought it quite plausible to follow his reply in its entirety. I think you’ve cornered the market on readers who need help with what to think. However, Mike Glyer, I’ll make you deal. You agree to actually quote our entire posts in your blog from now on, and I’ll go and edit this one to include his reply without fisk, Go on Glyer. Put your money where your mouth is.

      March 21, 2016
      • Mike Glyer #

        Does somebody really need to bribe you to get you to behave in a moral fashion? You told McCarty you were going to publish his response. You didn’t tell him you were going to display it in the manner you have done. I’m not a party to your agreement with him. Whether you honor it is between you and your conscience.

        March 21, 2016
        • Mr. Glyer,

          Coming from you, that’s really rich. I’m going to invoke Godwin’s Law now: Your whining about “ethics” is like Goebbels bemoaning the bombing of Monte Cassino as willful destruction of culture.

          March 21, 2016
        • Nathan #

          Where’s the breach? What’s the offense? And, if this is an agreement that you aren’t a party to, why the hell do you care so much? I see a lot of outrage and posturing from you, but precious little argument.

          March 21, 2016
        • Alex #

          Mr. Glyer, you might not like the format of Dave’s reply, but it’s ludicrous to imply that the format is immoral. Interlaced responses are often easier to read, especially when one can rely, as we can here, that the original is included in its entirety.

          Mr. McCarty was not “disemvoweled”, as your friends find humorous, nor was he edited to be nonsensical, as your friends do, nor was he selectively quoted and distorted – as you do. And when Dave challenges you to include full responses, has he has here, you blow and bluster and change the subject. Manufactured outrage. Perhaps you should consider your own conscience.

          March 21, 2016
        • (amused snort) Selective quotes Glyer, who quotes out of context to manipulate and twist for his own ends… unsurprisingly trying to manipulate and twist. Who by his behavior wouldn’t know ‘moral’ if it jumped up and bit him on the leg. Who takes great delight in damaging careers and starting fights…
          McCarty asked if I would quote it in its entirety..
          You seem to feel that a moral person would honor that without insertions or comment.
          Fine. By your own standard then I am asking you only quote me in full in future.
          I am appending the reply in full, unfisked.
          Go on Mr Morality. I’ll raise and see you.

          March 21, 2016
        • Hey Glyer I loved the way you lied to me at Worldcon saying you had never met a Sad Puppy. I also loved the way your quote friends commented about me for speaking at the business meeting at Worldcon. It’s always so much fun to have personal attacks over at your Vile770.

          March 22, 2016
        • Robin Munn #

          Mr. Glyer,

          I have already pointed out one misrepresentation you made on this very thread, four hours before you posted the above. You have chosen not to respond to my calling you out, but the evidence is there for all to see. On a trivial matter of no importance, you chose to misrepresent your opponent’s position when it could gain you nothing. It is therefore quite clear what you will do when you do gain something by misrepresenting your opponents.

          You have proven yourself a liar, and I do not believe a word you say.

          March 22, 2016
        • So, it’s “immoral” for Dave Freer to fail to quote your entire post without fisking it, but “moral” for you to quote little snippets of Dave’s posts and fisk them? Under what standard of objective morality?

          Because from here it looks like “one law for thee, but not for me.”

          March 25, 2016
        • mikewrytr #

          That would seem to be a ‘no’, right?

          March 28, 2016
    • It’s a variant of MSTing your funny post, which you apparently meant to be taken seriously. You are the Ed Wood of blogging.

      March 21, 2016
    • Mike, you mean like the way you fully quote folks over on your site? Or do the rules only apply to Dave and the rest of us?

      March 22, 2016
      • Patrick Chester #

        Mike, you mean like the way you fully quote folks over on your site? Or do the rules only apply to Dave and the rest of us?

        This is another one of those questions that can be answered with the article’s title, right? 😉

        March 22, 2016
  18. “And if anyone can point me Jameson Quinn’s academic institution, I will lodge an ethics complaint. ”

    He is apparently a Statistics PhD student at Harvard. The appropriate university entitiy would likely be called something like the “Institutional Review Board” (IRB) or the “Human Subjects Committee”. He would have been required to file details of the proposed research with the IRB (and received permission therefrom) before collecting any data. It’s kind of a big deal — as in “federal law” big. There have been cases of institutions losing all federal funding due to IRB irregularities.

    March 21, 2016
    • Oh, and before anyone starts up with the “doxxing” bullshit, Quinn himself has made no secret of his institutional affiliation in connection with this matter, and in fact has loudly touted it on several public blogs.

      March 21, 2016
    • Thank you. I will contact them with the details.

      March 21, 2016
    • Failure to register with and follow IRB process is the kiss of death at any academic institution worthy of the name. However, IRBs do not have a statutory responsibility to be publicly transparent, nor are they subject to FOIA-like requests.

      March 28, 2016
  19. Christopher M. Chupik #

    Time to vent.

    I’m getting sick of the gotcha about “slates”. “Brad released a slate by his own admission while this year it’s a recommendation list!” A slate is a recommendation list and vice versa. It’s not marching orders, to be carried out to the letter. There is no difference between what Brad and Kate did. Locus has a slate. Lots of publications and individuals release slates. Slates are not evil and were not evil until April 2015. Last year, same as this year, there is no obligation on Sad Puppy supporters to vote for exactly what’s on the slate. We are not lockstep voters, unlike the 2500-strong No Awarders.

    And yes, I know the low IQ types on the other side will read this and crow “See! A Puppy admits their evil slating!” That’s their problem, not mine.

    March 21, 2016
    • Slates are still not evil. Just puppies posting theirs are as long as they overpower the existing wink wink, nudge nudge.

      March 22, 2016
  20. I offer grateful thanks to both Vox Day and George R R Martin:
    http://habakkuk21.blogspot.com/2016/03/what-vox-day-and-george-r-r-martin-have.html

    March 21, 2016
  21. windsong #

    I always look forward to your posts, Dave. Thank you bringing humor to something that has, in many ways, put me off people somewhat. >..< Also, the spectacle they put on last year that had to have required some pre-planned effort just to beclown themselves convinced me my dollars would be better spent elsewhere. :/

    March 22, 2016
    • windsong #

      O.o WordPress ate the middle part of my post. But hey, the first, second, and last sentences remained intact. 😀

      March 22, 2016
      • Robin Munn #

        When commenting in WordPress, it’s best to stay away from angle brackets unless you intend to use them for formatting tags like italics. Any angle brackets that aren’t valid tags will tend to get interpreted as invalid tags, and therefore stripped from your post.

        Even angle brackets that you DID intend as tags can get stripped if you made a typo. This is why when I’ve written a long comment, I usually copy-and-paste my comment to Notepad++ before I hit the “Post Comment” button, Just In Case™.

        March 22, 2016
    • wordpress can be nightmare. Thanks for saying that. I try and add a little bit of a laugh to what is ‘iffen ah don’ laff, I sure as hail gonna cry’. I still hope cousin Hugo looks at himself and realizes he has to change. But yeah, I don’t think it likely I will bother to attend another worldcon. I am certain they won’t invite me. I don’t quite get why they think we’ll support them if they treat us like second class citizens. I have some great places to put my money.

      March 22, 2016
      • “Give us your money and go to Hell.” is such an appealing offer.

        March 22, 2016
        • Craig(2) #

          It’s why I won’t support again.

          March 22, 2016

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