Congratulations to Singing Bridges Travel Diary for winning the $10,000 prize in the Australia’s Best Blog Competition. The winning blog is a travel diary that records the sounds of bridges from around the world (now there’s a niche I’d never thought of blogging about!) I guess it takes all types….
Singing Bridges edged out 10 other finalists. The final standings were:
There are some great blogs there so congrats to Singing Bridges for taking it out.
Congratulations to SmartyHost for taking the initiative for hosting the awards. It’s nice to see a company willing to throw some money and effort behind the Aussie blogosphere. A few hints however for next year (they’ve talked about it being an annual event) that they might want to take onboard.
- Make the links on the competition’s blog live links – it’s what blogging is all about
- Perhaps some categories for different awards would be good
- Stick to the dates and times you set for announcements (this award was supposed to be announced yesterday)
- Consider a more interactive award – ie let people vote in a category or two (people’s choice award). This would enter more into the spirit of the blogosphere. Perhaps also they could take nominations not only from bloggers themselves but others?
- Make the judging panel a little more blogging focused. While I know some of the judging panel blog they could be accused of being a bit more mainstream media focused than new media focused. Of course having MSM on the panel does have some advantages in getting the competition covered more widely in the media but maybe to have some other bloggers would add some credibility to the competition.
As I say – it was a fair effort for the first year and I’m sure SmartyHost has benefited from it and will do so in the coming days with some extra media attention – but I’d love to see this go to the next level and become a bit more ‘blog like’.
Update – reactions to the winner of the award have been mixed to say the least around the Aussie blogosphere. Tim Blair has cracked it (to say the least). LoobyLu was a little more supportive of the winner.
update II – Judge Charles Wright is obviously not too happy with the result either. He’s just written on the Age blog about the process and actually reveals how he voted and what the voting process was like.
Judges only saw the 11 ‘top blogs’ and the voting system was out of 40 points per blog. Each blog gave a very different weight to their voting (ie some gave extreme votes) and some more moderate. Charles writes:
‘In fact, only two members of the judging panel voted it No. 1. It took the prize only because one of the judges gave it a total of 40 points – by far the most generous award by any judge – and the other 35 points. And both those judges marked between six and seven of the final 11 sites much lower than the other judges. Their spread was from 15 to 40, and from 10 to 35.
One of those judges awarded between 10 and 15 points to seven of the entries – which in our view indicates an entirely different frame of reference from the rest of the panel – and the other awarded 15 to 18 for six of them.
The other three judges marked in roughly the same band. Razor’s top vote got 31.5 points, and the bottom 19. The two judges whose votes were roughly in line with us, awarded from 33 to 22, and from 34 to 22.
In our opinion, there should have been some effort to standardise the points. If that had happened, the probable winner would have been Looby Lu or Trollhattansaab. ‘
Sounds like a bit of a bizaare way to run the voting. Perhaps a system where each judge had to rank blogs in order of preference would have been a better way to score blogs.
Update III: And if you havn’t had enough of Australian Blog Awards – check out Kek’s Australian Blog Awards which has just opened up for nominations. Keks has run this awards for at least a couple of years – it’s got categories, it’s voted on by the people and it seems to grow in popularlity every year. No big prizes but much more ‘bloglike’.