Pixel Scroll 4/22/17 Get Out Of There At Once! The Pixels Are Coming From Inside The Scroll!

(1) CON REPORT. Outer Places went to Steve Wozniak’s comic con — “The SVCC Tech Showcase Was Filled With Robots and Supercars”.

Second only to the Woz himself, the night’s biggest show-stealer was SoftBank Robotics‘ Pepper the Robot. The machine is designed to be able to accurately perceive emotions, and is currently being marketed as a personal assistant in Japan. Tonight, Pepper mostly just rolled up to people and requested they take a selfie with them – that may sound like a waste of Pepper’s talents, but any robot who can perceive emotions would eventually realize that humans enjoy doing really silly things. So before the robots take over, we’ll take selfies with them.

(2) CAPTAIN KIRK. Of course, that may be underestimating William Shatner who was at SVCC yesterday, too — “William Shatner delights fans at Silicon Valley Comic Con” . Watch the KGO news video at the link.

From “Star Wars” to “Star Trek” and everything in between, the second annual Silicon Valley Comic Con did not disappoint on its opening night. In addition to costumes and cosplay fans were treated to an evening with Captain Kirk himself, William Shatner.

(3) SOMEBODY’S WRONG ON THE INTERNET! The Fargo/Hugo Award identification continues to outrun the correction – as per usual in social media. But I’m impressed how many people know what a Hugo is. By comparison, it’ll be a cold day in Fargo Hell before the masses think they recognize a Dragon Award being used as a murder weapon on TV – take that, Puppies!

Series of tweets here:

(4) SCIENCE’S SIBLING RIVALRY. Star Trek, Arrival, linguistics, and “soft” science versus “hard” science: “Uhura Was a Comms Officer: Why Linguistics Matter”.

In Arrival, Louise Banks melds xenolinguistics, language documentation and underlying pattern recognition—even within the film, however, her specialty is derided as “not real” science by her male (theoretical physicist) counterpart Ian Donnelly. After quoting from a book on linguistics Banks wrote, Ian says flatly that she’s wrong:

“Well, the cornerstone of civilization isn’t language. It’s science.”

This is a succinct rendition of how language study tends to be viewed by those outside of it: that the scientific study of language isn’t science. This also, of course, ties into other things (such as sexism and whatnot, plus trying to use dialogue as characterization in media) but detailing such factors is beyond the scope of this article; suffice it to say, Arrival tries to detail the work of documenting and recognizing patterns of a completely unfamiliar system.

(5) WELCOME TO MARS, NOW DROP DEAD. Daily Mail, which enjoys such a reputation around here, warns “Visitors to Mars Will Die in Under 68 Days”..

…One of the most important conclusions of the research is that neither crops nor oxygen generated for the inhabitants will be sufficient to support life for long. A fatal fire is also a major risk.

The Daily Mail summarized the very long MIT paper:

Mars One is an ambitious plan by a Dutch entrepreneur to send people to Mars next decade and start building a colony there. The proposal has received fierce criticism for its lack of realistic goals, and now one study has dealt the team a crushing blow – by saying the colonists will begin dying in 68 days. Low air pressure, habitats at risk of explosion and a lack of spare parts are among the potentially fatal dangers that apparently await anyone who makes the inaugural trip.

(6) LEND A RESEARCHER A HAND. Zack Weinberg asks for your help. I ran this past a friend whose computer and network knowledge I respect and he agreed it looked bona fide – but as always, exercise your own wisdom about participating. This demo is part of a research study conducted by Zachary Weinberg, Nicolas Christin, and Vyas Sekar of Carnegie Mellon University. And as he says at the end, “’I particularly want Asia, sub-Saharan Africa, and South America.”

I’m doing a research project related to online censorship, which you can help with, by visiting https://research.owlfolio.org/active-geo/ in any reasonably recent version of Firefox, Chrome, or IE. (You must have JavaScript enabled. It doesn’t work in Safari, which unfortunately means you cannot use an iDevice.) Press the Start button on the map, wait for it to finish, and then click the “Tell me more” button (which appears when it’s done) and read the text and follow the instructions. It is especially helpful if you do this on a computer physically located somewhere other than Europe and North America.

The experiment is testing “active geolocation”, which is when you try to figure out where a computer physically is by measuring how long it takes a packet of information to go round-trip between one computer and other computers in known locations. This has been studied carefully within Europe and the continental USA, but much less so elsewhere.

This is relevant to Internet censorship because, in order to measure Internet censorship, you need access to a computer within the sub-network run by a censorious country or organization. Commercial VPN services are one way to do this. Unfortunately, the countries that are most aggressive about censoring the Internet are also countries where it is difficult and expensive to host servers. I suspect that several commercial VPN providers’ claims of widespread server hosting are false: they are placing servers in countries where it is easy to do business, and then adding false entries to commonly-used geolocation databases. If whatsmyip and the like tell their users that the VPN server is in the right country, that’s good enough to make a sale…

I have run these measurements myself on many VPN servers, but I don’t know how accurate they are, and the accuracy varies depending on the true location. By visiting this page, running all the way through a measurement, and then telling me honestly where your computer really is, you provide me with data that I can use to calibrate the VPN measurements. Again, data from places other than Europe and North America is especially helpful: I particularly want Asia, sub-Saharan Africa, and South America.

(7) CHARLES VESS. Coming this fall, an art book by the master — “Charles Vess Has An Original Art Edition of The Book of Ballads”.

From Neil Gaiman’s retelling of “The False Knight on the Road”, to Jeff Smith’s “The Galtee Farmer”, and Jane Yolen’s “King Henry” – Charles Vess’ The Book of Ballads brought new visions of the classic folktales from the brightest New York Times bestsellers, award winners, and masters of science fiction and fantasy together with stunning art from Charles Vess. With this new The Boo of Ballads Art Edition, get ready to experience the stories anew!

Hits comic stores September 13, 2017 and bookstores on November 10, 2017.

(8) SQUEE DOWN UNDER Ryan K. Lindsay is an excited Aurealis Award winner.


Two choices for April 22 —


Earth Day Network

The first Earth Day on April 22, 1970, activated 20 million Americans from all walks of life and is widely credited with launching the modern environmental movement. The passage of the landmark Clean Air ActClean Water ActEndangered Species Act and many other groundbreaking environmental laws soon followed. Twenty years later, Earth Day went global, mobilizing 200 million people in 141 countries and lifting environmental issues onto the world stage.


March for Science

The March for Science is the first step of a global movement to defend the vital role science plays in our health, safety, economies, and governments.

(10) MARCHER FOR SCIENCE. Given what a lot of you think about the Daily Mail, why wouldn’t most their coverage of the March for Science in London revolve around Doctor Who’s Peter Capaldi? Except that you think it’s a good thing, don’t you. Fess up!

Doctor Who star Peter Capaldi joined physicists, astronomers and biologists at the March for Science as protesters paraded past London’s most celebrated research institutions.

Leading figures used the occasion to warn Britain’s impending divorce from the continent could compromise their work by stifling collaboration with overseas colleagues.

Organisers claimed 12,000 people joined the London event, as hundreds of similar protests took place around the globe, from Australia to the US.

Somebody needs to say it: What’s Doctor Who but a show that glorifies fake science and boasts a stunning lack of internal consistency? Yes, I love it, too, but let’s not get confused about what happens every episode….


  • April 22, 1953 – Sci-fi horror movie Invaders From Mars was released on this date.
  • April 22, 1978 — The Blues Brothers make their world premiere on Saturday Night Live.


  • April 22, 1894:  Legendary film heavy Rondo Hatton is born in Hagerstown, MD. (Which makes me wonder, did he ever meet Harry Warner, Jr.?)

(13) SEE THE AUTHORS. Here are Ellen Datlow’s photos from the April 19’s Fantastic Readings at KGB with Laura Anne Gilman and Seth Dickinson.

(14) HEAR THE AUTHORS. At the next Fantastic Fiction at KGB on May 17, hosts Ellen Datlow and Matthew Kressel present E.C. Myers and Sam J. Miller.

E.C. Myers was assembled in the U.S. from Korean and German parts and raised by a single mother and a public library in Yonkers, New York. He has published four novels, and short stories in various magazines and anthologies, including Space & Time Magazine, Hidden Youth: Speculative Stories of Marginalized Children, and Kaleidoscope: Diverse YA Science Fiction and Fantasy. His first novel, Fair Coin, won the 2012 Andre Norton Award for Young Adult SF and Fantasy, and YALSA selected The Silence of Six as one of its “Top Ten Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers” in 2016. His next book will be DoubleThink, a collection of stories related to The Silence of Six from and he continues to write for ReMade, a science fiction series from Serial Box Publishing.


Sam J. Miller’s short stories have appeared in publications such as Asimov’s, Clarkesworld, and Lightspeed, along with multiple “year’s best” anthologies. His debut novel The Art of Starving, forthcoming from HarperTeen, was called “Funny, haunting, beautiful, relentless and powerful… a classic in the making” by Book Riot. His second novel, The Breaks, will be published by Ecco Press in 2018. He graduated from the Clarion UCSD Science Fiction & Fantasy Workshop in 2012. A finalist for multiple Nebula Awards along with the World Fantasy and Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Awards, he won the 2013 Shirley Jackson Award for his short story “57 Reasons for the Slate Quarry Suicides.”

May 17th, 7 p.m. at KGB Bar, 85 East 4th Street (just off 2nd Ave, upstairs.)

(15) GO AROUND AGAIN. The … individual … pushing circular runways backs up his ideas: “Circular runways: Engineer defends his proposal”

Last month we published a video arguing the case for circular runways at airports, as part of a series called World Hacks. It took off and went viral.

The video has had more than 36 million views on Facebook and generated heated debate on social media – including within the aviation community. Many people are sceptical about the concept.

So we decided to hand-pick some of the top concerns and put them straight to the man proposing the idea: Dutch engineer Henk Hesselink.

This is what he had to say….

Chip Hitchcock remarks, “I like how he casually dismisses increased landing speeds (ignoring their effects on tires) and doesn’t even discuss how difficult it would be to build several miles of surface with a uniform concavity or to refit several thousand airplanes with an autopilot sophisticated enough to handle such a landing — or how much harder aborting safely would be if the autopilot failed.”

(16) GET YOUR TISSUES READY. Nerdist has photos — “Little Jyn Erso Cosplayer Delivers Death Star Plans to Leia at STAR WARS Celebration”.

Harley and her dad made the data cards as a fun activity for the convention. Harley loves interacting with other people, and they thought this was a fitting tribute to their love of Star Wars and Fisher. As Harley ran into Leia cosplayers of all variety of ensemble, she handed over the Death Star plans. I don’t know how many Leia cosplayers were moved to tears by this act, but I’d wager it wasn’t a small number.

(17) KAMIKASSINI. Cassini sets up for final plunge: “Cassini probe heads towards Saturn ‘grand finale'”.

In the years that it has been studying the Saturnian system, the probe has flown by the haze-shrouded world on 126 occasions – each time getting a kick that bends it towards a new region of interest.

And on Saturday, Cassini pulled on the gravitational “elastic band” one last time, to shift from an orbit that grazes the outer edge of Saturn’s main ring system to a flight path that skims the inner edge and puts it less than 3,000km above the planet’s cloud tops.

The probe will make the first of these gap runs next Wednesday, repeating the dive every six and a half days through to its death plunge, scheduled to occur at about 10:45 GMT on 15 September.

The probe is scheduled for deliberate destruction to avoid any risk of it hitting and contaminating a Saturnian moon.

(18) APOLLO 13. Now there’s a documentary about “The unsung heroes who prevented the Apollo 13 disaster”.

Two days into what should have been a mission to the Moon, disaster struck Apollo 13. A new film explores the drama – and astronaut Jim Lovell recounts the incredible efforts to bring the crew back….

These tanks, in the spacecraft service module, were Liebergot’s responsibility. They held oxygen and hydrogen, which was converted to electricity and water in three fuel cells – powering the capsule and providing the astronauts with drinking water. The routine instruction to turn on stirring fans was to make sure the liquid in the fuel vessels was properly mixed, to ensure the gauges gave accurate readings.

Swigert flicks the switches for the fans. Two minutes later, there is a bang and the master alarm sounds.

On the ground, Liebergot is beginning the last hour of his eight-hour shift and is the first to see something has gone wrong. “The data went crazy, there was a lot of commotion in the room,” he says. “We didn’t know what we were seeing.”

That eight-hour shift would eventually end three days later.

“Houston, we’ve had a problem here,” Lovell tells mission control. “It looks to me, looking out the hatch, that we are venting something. We are venting something out into space.”

Chip Hitchcock opines, “To go with a documentary about the rescue, which I can see starting another round of does-this-qualify-for-the-DP-Hugo — provided it gets enough attention. (Released 5 weeks ago, but I don’t recall it showing in Boston at all; did anyone else see it before it went to Amazon video?)

(19) BACK IN THE STEM. “Why Russia is so good at encouraging women into tech” — Chip Hitchcock introduces this with a lemony comment: “Makes an interesting contrast to the recent proposal to decriminalize wifebeating; I wonder whether their rightward political shift will affect this.”

According to Unesco, 29% of people in scientific research worldwide are women, compared with 41% in Russia. In the UK, about 4% of inventors are women, whereas the figure is 15% in Russia.

Russian girls view Stem far more positively, with their interest starting earlier and lasting longer, says Julian Lambertin, managing director at KRC Research, the firm that oversaw the Microsoft interviews.

(20) PUB SIGN. Catching up on the news from 2011 — “Sizewell: Unique pub sign scoops top award” in the East Anglian Daily Times.

His unique creation features three variations on the vulcan theme – the Roman god, the delta-winged jet aircraft and the TV character Mr Spock.

Mr Fisk, who has been at the pub since 1997, decided to create a new sign after the old one was hit by a lorry around 18 months ago.

(21) HOLD EVERYTHING. In “Love in Public” on Vimeo, Noah Malone explains what happens to relationships when talking club sandwiches give gratuitous advice.

[Thanks to John King Tarpinian, JJ, Chip Hitchcock, Zack Weinberg, Martin Morse Wooster, Cat Eldridge, and Carl Slaughter for some of these stories. Title credit goes to File 770 contributing editor of the day Kip W.]

141 thoughts on “Pixel Scroll 4/22/17 Get Out Of There At Once! The Pixels Are Coming From Inside The Scroll!

  1. It Takes a Nation of Pixels to Hold Us Back

    Never a Mind the Bollocks, Here’s the Sex Pixels

  2. (3) Oh, that’s a third series of ‘Fargo’!. Here’s me thinking I had to catch up on unwatched as yet Season 2. Yay!

    (20) Does he have crowds of Trekkies taking photos….

    The Pixel you Scroll, the Filer You Get..

  3. @Clack

    How about “Never Mind the Scrollocks, Here’s the Sex Pixels”?

    Also: Pre-Fifth?

  4. @P J Evans: GoogleMaps shows the pub hard against a slight expansion in the shoulder of a two-land road; I’ll bet a delivery truck wasn’t watching above while trying to get out of traffic for a front delivery, or while coming out of the car park (after a side delivery) and getting up to traffic speed.

  5. Clack, I did that second one once, with “Scrollocks” instead, otherwise the same. I’m not sure if it was used or not. And some variation on Ken Richards, too. Been a while, though.


    ed: Post-retro-ninja’d by Bonnie McDaniel.

  6. Bonnie McDaniel: Never Mind the Scrollocks, Here’s the Sex Pixels

    Yes, I can see using that. I’ll give Clack and you joint credit when I do.

  7. Kip W. Hm. Now I have to figure out a new way of crediting all three of you.

    “Contributing editors Clack and Bonnie McDaniel, and alternate universe contributing editor Kip. W because he actually said it a month earlier.”

    Sure. There’s the sort of smooth phrasing that wins all the awards…. *hack* *coff*

  8. File770: best titles by committee this side of the Internet!

    Hello! I’m back from the middle of the Indian ocean, where I made a modest additional dent in my Hugo series reading pile – finally got to the payoff for my decision to read Miles Vorkosigan from the start and thoroughly enjoyed Memory; rediscovered Temeraire though I skipped a lot of the fighty bits; found Foxglove summer a great read in the Peter Grant books and am about to finish up Four Roads Cross and be UP TO DATE on a series for once (unless the new one came out while I was underwater?)

    I also read Blackout and All Clear by Connie Willis – that was an emotional ride and a half and I thoroughly enjoyed it, though I find Willis builds tension through deliberately withholding information from the audience a little too often for my taste.

    Also, two 2017 novellas:
    Brother’s Ruin by Emma Newman was great, with an interesting worldbuilding setup and a slightly thin but compelling enough cast, but it does feel like the first third of a really interesting novel, not a complete story in itself – looking forward to more but I recommend anyone who likes solid resolution at the end of their reading hold off for now.

    Mira’s Last Dance, the latest Penric novella, I have to give a massive “wait what????” to. Of course it’s all good solid well written Bujold fun, but the main plot makes light of transphobia and violence against sex workers in a way i was really disappointed by (the more spoilery elaboration is that Craevp, jvgu n cnegvphyne snprg bs Qrfqrzban ng gur uryz, ratntrf va na riravat bs frk jbex jvgu n urgrebfrkhny zna juvyr cnffvat nf n jbzna, naq zbfg bs gur punenpgref rkcrpg gur phfgbzre gb erfcbaq jvgu ivbyrapr vs Craevp vf bhgrq – fb sne fb ernyvfgvp, naq V unir ab crefbany vffhr jvgu gur jnl frk jbex be traqre naq frkhnyvgl ner cerfragrq va n ernfbanoyl znggre bs snpg jnl, ohg V URNIVYL dhrfgvba Ohwbyq’f qrpvfvba gb cynl nyy guvf nf n uhzbebhf fbhepr bs grafvba.)

    16: that mini Jyn was one of the first things that came up on my Twitter when I got back to land and was very helpful in getting the last of the ocean out of my eyes…

  9. (4) Just a note about the linked article: “Morphology, for example, is the sub-field of the formation and composition of sounds.” This isn’t so. Morphology is the study of word formation, and I might add that until 15 years or so ago its study was effectively banished from American linguistics because the version of Chomskyan theory at the time considered the matter a trivial consequence of the interaction of phonological and syntactic rules. “The formation and composition of sounds” is (roughly, like everything else here) phonology, or perhaps phonetics (it depends if the formation and composition is being examined in its mental or physical aspect, respectively). I suspect this is an “edito”–like a typo but done in editing, where you have two items and explanations and have to cut one for brevity, and without thinking cut out half of one and half of the other and sew the remainder together, then later go, “Oh, crud, what did I do?”

  10. @PJ: “I’m wondering now just how the lorry managed to hit the previous sign.”

    Isn’t it obvious? It ran off the Vulcan road! 😀

    (With apologies to Leonard McCoy, M.D.)

  11. (2) CAPTAIN KIRK. SVCC has posted video of the full Shatner panel, but unfortunately, the audio quality is not very good.

  12. @Arifel

    File770: best titles by committee this side of the Internet!

    A Scroll is a Pixel designed by a committee?

    My opinion on Brother’s Ruin was almost identical to yours – including that people may wish to hold off until they publish the other two thirds of the novel that this novella seems to have been chopped out of.

  13. Meredith moment: A Conjuring of Light (A Darker Shade of Magic #3) by V.E. Schwab is 99p on Kindle UK. I’m not sure why you’d have #3 on sale and not #1 and 2, but there you go. It’s a really good series – come for the imaginative worldbuilding, stay for how great a character Lila is.

  14. If in the first act you have hung a pixel on the wall, then in the following one it should be scrolled.

  15. “Never Mind the Scrollocks” got used for my birthday scroll last year. http://file770.com/?p=28734 (I remember noticing that I don’t just share a birthday with Larry Niven, he’s actually 30 years older than me, to the day.)
    Looks like there were two scrolls that day, one specifically for Hugos / Puppies, and one for more general news, and that was the second.

  16. My wife and daughter (who’s goal is to teach on Mars) spent the day marching at our state Capitol. We are doing everything that we can to keep her love of the sciences going.

  17. Hugo ballot news:

    With regret, we have removed Alex Garner from #HugoAwards Best Fan Artist ballot. The new finalist is Steve Stiles. https://t.co/XZuuCQudmX

    ETA: the linked statement basically says Garner has told them all his 2016 work was pro. Garner was a Rabid pick (an unwitting one as far as I know). I would say that Garner’s integrity in bringing this up has to be applauded.

  18. Mark: ETA: the linked statement basically says Garner has told them all his 2016 work was pro. Garner was a Rabid pick (an unwitting one as far as I know). I would say that Garner’s integrity in bringing this up has to be applauded.

    Yeah, this was certainly one of several RP cuck-ups in putting people on their slate without researching to see if they were eligible. Their original short form editor nominee wasn’t eligible, one of their Pro Artists (despite creating fabulous work!) does not produce in an eligible medium, their other Pro Artist had no Pro publications in 2016 and should have been nominated under Fan Artist, and one of their Fan Artists had only pro work and should have been nominated under Pro Artist.

    It almost sounds like the nominees were thought up by the sort of accuracy-oriented editor who would put two Chapter 5s in a book. 😀

  19. Arifel: Bringing Ted’s hit rate on his already limited 2017 slate to 55%. Sad!

    … in other words, RP nominees are only 8.3% of the 2017 Finalist ballot.

  20. Well, kudos to Alex Garner, anyway.

    6) I tried this one last night – the active geolocation thing is spookily accurate (to within the right street, even), whereas my browser, at the time, thought I was in Milton Keynes. (Why would I be in Milton Keynes? Why would anyone?)

  21. (5) WELCOME TO MARS, NOW DROP DEAD. Daily Mail, which enjoys such a reputation around here,

    And, if it hasn’t been mentioned, is no longer a trusted source on Wikipedia

  22. 3) The iconography of the Hugo award, IMO, makes it easy to be seen as a SF award–its a rocket. The Nebula award, as pretty as it is, just wouldn’t be identified as an SFF award. The former WFA award wouldn’t either*.

    *sidenote: Del Toro has a lot of Lovecraft busts and imagery in his house, to judge from the stuff he lent to his traveling exhibit. Even weirder: The Castalia House twitter account (and we know what the Puppies think of our ilk) retweeted a picture I shared of a Lovecraft statue from the exhibition. Even weirder and more pleasant, Del Toro retweeted a couple of other pictures I shared from that exhibition, exploding my mentions for a bit. And if you want to see some of the stuff from that exhibition: https://www.princejvstin.com/miamarch2017/

  23. Mark on April 23, 2017 at 12:30 am said:
    Meredith moment: A Conjuring of Light (A Darker Shade of Magic #3) by V.E. Schwab is 99p on Kindle UK. I’m not sure why you’d have #3 on sale and not #1 and 2, but there you go.

    I think it’s because they had a sale on the first two a couple of months ago – which would be when I bought them; I have the morals and the instincts of a vulture.

  24. Bonus Meredith Moment:

    Six Wakes by Mur Lafferty (which was released only 12 weeks ago) is on sale on US Kindle (and possibly other formats and countries) for $2.99.

    I just read this last week and LOVED it. Epic space opera on a mult-generation colony ship, with clones, AIs, and an excellent murder mystery. This is already on my shortlist for the 2018 Hugos.

  25. The Rabid Puppies also got a fanzine on the Hugo ballot that isn’t a fanzine. The Castalia House blog has posts by Beale. Castalia is a for-profit enterprise and he’s paid for his work in more than contributor’s copies, so that makes it a semiprozine or a prozine, not a fanzine.

  26. @rcade

    Hmm, while I’d like that to be true, wouldn’t he have to be paid specifically for the articles, not just taking a profit from his publishing/editing work for/at Castalia?

  27. Anyone who makes money at a publisher could claim some of their work for that company is unpaid. If the entity paying you is the publisher of the fanzine, that’s professional work. I don’t think it’s fair to include that in a category created for fan publications published as a labor of love.

    The Castalia House blog is on the homepage of the publisher’s website. The purpose of that site is to promote and sell its books. There’s an Amazon link next to every post for people to make purchases.

    Obviously the blog is unlikely to win. It might even finish below No Award. But it’s taking a nomination spot from an actual fanzine.

  28. (21) For mismatched tragic relationships though – something that showed up in YouTube’s recommendations for me this week :


    Trigger warnings for werewolf murders and possible ear worms.

  29. @rcade

    Ah, I was only looking at the Fanzine definition, but I take it you were looking at:

    A Professional Publication is one which meets at least one of the following two criteria:
    (1) it provided at least a quarter the income of any one person or
    (2) was owned or published by any entity which provided at least a quarter the income of any of its staff and/or owner.

    which is a criteria that a fanzine has to fail. (Do correct me if I’m misreading where you were going).
    I was concerned that the wording in the definition of fanzine might allow the blog to be considered separately from the publisher, but the wording above actually makes the link quite explicit – if the blog is “owned or published” by CH and CH provides someone – anyone – with 25% of their income then it’s a professional publication.
    So, I rather think you’re right, but how would you actually find out for sure, other than taking their word for it?

  30. I also was looking at the semiprozine category. For a publication to be a semiprozine it must meet one of these two criteria:

    “(1) paid its contributors and/or staff in other than copies of the publication,

    “(2) was generally available only for paid purchase”

    The first criteria is the one that usually pulls a fanzine up into the semiprozine category.

    So, I rather think you’re right, but how would you actually find out for sure, other than taking their word for it?

    I’d like to see the Hugo committee use their judgment based on what we can verify: the blog’s presence on the Castalia House website, the posts by Beale and the Amazon advertising next to every post.

    If all they do is take the word of the nominee, Beale and blog editor Jeffro Johnson are part of a campaign designed to “burn down the Hugos” (Beale’s words). So we can’t count on them to do what Alex Garner did.

  31. @rcade

    I’d like to see the Hugo committee use their judgment based on what we can verify: the blog’s presence on the Castalia House website, the posts by Beale and the Amazon advertising next to every post.

    I think 3SV is the only way to handle this. The committee seems to be very, very cautious and prefers to let the fans handle it via giving No Award to unqualified nominees. (Kevin Standlee might weigh in here.) That worked for decades; in fact, I’d say the mere threat of it worked for decades, since only rarely did the members need to vote anything under No Award. It worked up until a group emerged that merely wanted to put trash on the final ballot to discredit the awards and didn’t care about No Award.

    3SV will let the fans disqualify stuff like this, but I think it’s hopeless to expect the committee to start disqualifying people who insist they’re qualified.

  32. If Castalia House doesn’t provide a quarter of anyone’s income, I’m not sure that’s a fact they would want to advertise.

  33. @Mark
    It’s not clear to me whether the “its” in criterion 2 refers to the “entity” or to the publication. The latter sounds more likely to me, since criterion 1 clearly refers to the publication supplying income to someone working on the publication; criterion 2 would then extend that to the encompassing entity supplying such income, closing a possible loophole.

  34. Unfortunately, I expect that judging a finalist ineligible despite their own, possibly dishonest, assertions to the contrary would draw a great deal of fire onto the admins -not only from the WrongEd Parties themselves, but from other quarters of fandom as well who don’t want to let a precedent of more active judgements stand.

    If you had 3SV, that responsibility would be outsourced and you’d be more likely to end up with the controversial result. What happens next is still likely to be a divisive event provoking a ton of debate and maybe renewing the puppy persecution complex in annoying ways, but at least you’d not have a couple of overworked admins forced to defend their interpretation against all comers.

  35. @Jim Parish

    Hmmm, yes, that’s a possible interpretation I hadn’t thought of. However, I don’t think “and/or owner” makes sense unless it’s the latter interpretation?

    I wonder if anyone knows what the intent was, he said hopefully into the ether.

    @Greg (or Mike, or anyone who knows)

    Did the admins ask RSR any questions designed to check you fit the criteria? I know from what you’ve said previously that it’s a volunteer effort and you don’t even run ads, I’m just interested in whether there’s a standard question they ask everyone or something.

  36. JJ:

    Thanks for reccing “Six Wakes”! I’m looking for more “already going on next year’s Best Novel longlist” recommendations — anyone else got any to add?

    I *tried* to read “The Stars Are Legion”, and it turned out to be the 3rd Hurley in a row I just couldn’t get into. For some reason I just can’t connect to her protagonists.

    “Collapsing Empire” is OK, but I’m having more and more trouble accepting stories where a vast and complex society has hereditary rulers that are competent. Including hereditary CEOs. Every time I see such a character, I think of either Prince Charles or Jared Kushner — and that’s no way to have fun.

  37. I think 3SV is the only way to handle this.

    I support 3SV, but I think Hugo committees have always made decisions on nominee eligibility and could do so here. The Best Fanzine category should be for projects like your Rocket Stack Rank, where you and Eric Wong are carrying on the noble fanzine tradition of doing a ridiculous amount of work for completely non-existent compensation.

    The Castalia House Blog is part of a money-making enterprise for Theodore Beale, just as the Tor.Com blog is for Tor. I think in fairness to the seventh-place finisher in Best Fanzine, Castalia House Blog should be disallowed in that category.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *