Not gonna comment on the Hugos, not yet anyway. But something did come up about one of the OTHER rules changes that are floating around at the Business Meeting. One of them, “A.4 Nominee Diversity”, sounds awfully familiar. Despite the name, it isn’t SJW bait. It addresses one of my other suggestions from a year ago, but Implements it in a bass-ackward, voter disenfranchising way.
The idea, according the the camera shot of the projection screen I saw, was to stop a single author or TV show from dominating a category. I hadn’t really considered it an issue with authors, but Best Dramatic Presentation – Short Form was turning into “Which was your favorite episode of Doctor Who this season?” Their solution: If there are more than two works from the same show, or more than two books with the same author (or that have two authors in common for multi-author works), then the third and subsequent entries get dropped from the ballot and replaced with things from further down in the pack.
What that means is that if nearly everybody nominated 4 or 5 Doctor Who episodes, and a few other items filled in the rest, you could, in theory, when combined with the 5% rule, get a ballot with two Doctor Who episodes on it. Okay, I exaggerate, it’s an edge case, and who knows what the other anti-slate measures proposed would do to a set of nominating ballots like that… they could end up with nothing. Or maybe something that just cleared the 5% threshold would be on the ballot as the third highest nomination getter.
It’s a pretty distorted way to solve the real problem. Now, I hadn’t considered multiple books by the same author as a problem (I’m guessing this is just a reaction to a certain, *sniff*, undesirable writer getting 6 nominations in the past) but in terms of TV shows, my suggestion was to nominate a program, rather than an episode. That way, a show everyone liked could get a lot of nominations, rather than having them spread out over 4 or 5 different episodes, AND they would leave four other slots open. It just seemed fairer, and didn’t have this nasty aftertaste of eliminating things that people really liked. There’s just too much emphasis lately on finding reasons to replace things that got a lot of nominations with something that got fewer.