Business Meeting Votes
Hugo Zine Category Changes

Friday’s session of the Renovation business meeting ended with a remarkable display of consensus as fans voted in a collection of changes to the Hugo zine categories with only four opposing votes.

Best Fancast: The business meeting had to winnow through competing proposals affecting the zine categories. The first step was separately considering the two motions to create a new Hugo category for “fancasts,” which would (if adopted) inferentially redefine the zine categories by removing audio and video items.

The business meeting then voted to direct Andrew Trembley and Rich Lynch to reconcile their two versions into a single proposal for the meeting to consider. Many fans consulted on the revision. Friday’s meeting passed it 75-11.

(Caution: The wording quoted here is based on my notes.)

Insert a new section after existing section 3.1.13 to create a new category:
3.3.X: Best Fancast. Any generally available non-profesional audio or video periodical devoted to science fiction, fantasy or related subjects that by the close of the previous calendar year has released four (4) or more episodes, at least one (1) of which appeared in the previous calendar year, and that does not qualify as a dramatic presentation.

The proposal includes a sunset provision that it unless it is re-ratified by the 2016 business meeting it shall be repealed.

Report of the Semiprozine Committee: There followed a whole series of procedural steps to allow the meeting to consider competing rules changes offered by the Semiprozine Committee (the fruit of two years’ work), and Rich Lynch.

Despite several attempts to introduce different ideas or language, and a considerable amount of maneuvering generally, the proposals of the Semiprozine Committee on the whole were passed, (1) with necessary wording to reconcile them to the creation of the fancast category, and (2) to incorporate Lynch’s key ideas, the deletion of “equivalent in other media” from the fanzine category, and addition of the word “periodical” to modify “publication.”

Here is the result:

Added a new section
3.Y.Z: 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.

Amended sections 3.3.12 and 3.3.13, by replacing them with:
3.3.12: Best Semiprozine. Any generally available non-professional publication devoted to science fiction or fantasy, or related subjects which by the close of the previous calendar year has published four (4) or more issues (or the equivalent in other media), at least one (1) of which appeared in the previous calendar year, which does not qualify as a fancast and which in the previous calendar year met at least one (1) of the following criteria:
(1) paid its contributors and/or staff monetarily,
(2) was generally available only for paid purchase,

3.3.13: Best Fanzine. Any generally available non-professional periodical publication devoted to science fiction, fantasy, or related subjects which by the close of the previous calendar year has published four (4) or more issues at least one (1) of which appeared in the previous calendar year, which does not qualify as a fancast and which in the previous calendar year met neither of the following criteria:
(1) paid its contributors and/or staff monetarily,
(2) was generally available only for paid purchase,

Add to the end of Section 3.9 (Notification and Acceptance):
“Additionally, each nominee in the categories of Best Fanzine and Best Semi-Prozine shall be required to confirm that they meet the qualifications of their category.”

Each of these amendments will have to be ratified by the Chicago 2012 Worldcon business meeting in order to take effect.

Rich Lynch and Steven H Silver believed that the changes made to the fanzine category will still allow some websites or blogs to be eligible if they are not “continually updated” but take down and archive the previous material. SF Site is an example of a website that already follows this practice. The final verdict will rest with the voters and the Hugo Administrator.

The Rest of the Story: The Business Meeting made many other decisions this week.

Mark Protection Committee: Linda Deneroff, Dave McCarty, Warren Buff and Stephen Boucher were elected to fill the open seats on the Mark Protection Committee. Besides vacancies caused by three members’ expiring terms, a fourth vacancy had been created by Ruth Sachter’s resignation from the committee.

Business Passed on from Aussiecon 4: A series of amendments to the WSFS Constitution passed on from Aussiecon 4 were ratified unchanged at the Renovation business meeting.

These amendments (1) altered the Worldcon membership rate limits, (2) made explicit the authority to conduct electronic voting for the Hugo Awards and Site Selection (in addition to paper voting), (3) allowed cons to comply with the requirement to distribute WSFS rules to members via electronic distribution, on an opt-in basis, (4) clarified reference to “run-off candidate” in the constitution, and (5) updated the language of the service mark notice to include the Hugo Award logo and trophy.

New Business: A proposed amendment to the WSFS Constititution directing the Mark Protection Committee to “protect likely internet domain names of future worldcons for years not yet selected” was referred to the Mark Protection Committee for refinement.

An amendment was introduced to prevent the Mark Protection Committee from imposing more stringent membership eligibility rules than are already present in the WSFS Constitution. This was a reaction against a rules change made at Aussiecon 4, and was a source of high emotion because the rule change had only affected Cheryl Morgan. The meeting did repudiate that change but by another route, see full details on Kevin Standlee’s LiveJournal. Kevin also covers the other housekeeping rules changes that were passed.

2 thoughts on “Business Meeting Votes
Hugo Zine Category Changes

  1. Sounds like the job got done, if ratified next year. Congrats and high fives all around. Don’t quite grasp, regarding the podcast category, “The proposal includes a sunset provision that it unless it is re-ratified by the 2016 business meeting it shall be repealed.” Is this in case interest falls off for the new category?

  2. Dave-

    The sunset clause is something that was also used in the Graphic Story category. The idea is that if a new category proves not to be viable, it makes it easier to remove (requiring a vote at a single Worldcon rather than 2). So, once the amendment goes into effect (2013), we need to make sure the category is seen as viable.

Comments are closed.