I entered the best blog category for the Qantas media awards and didn’t make the finals. Here were the four posts I put up, with apologies to Russell Brown, Telecom XT and NBR for opening old wounds.
I had always assumed that Kiwiblog would run away with the award, so am a bit sad that Dave Farrar’s site did not even make the finals. Neither did Russell Brown’s Public Address, and each of these should be perennial contenders for the award.
I didn’t expect to make it – and indeed I may have been DQ’d, either because I judged another online category or as I was insufficiently news focused.
The easier question is whether or not Kiwiblog should be there as I fully expected. There are three possible reasons for Kiwiblog not to make it: application, disqualification, or judging.
The first, and I hope most probable cause, for Kiwiblog’s absence from the finalists is that Kiwiblog did not apply for the Qantas awards. While from a judge’s perspective this is frustrating as the universe of potential award recipients is defined, it also avoids the ‘black hole’ of endless numbers of possible award winners for the judges. So if Dave chose not to compete, then sobeit.
The second possible cause is that the judge decided that Kiwiblog did not qualify under the rules. The site may have been deemed by the judge not to have met the “news related” requrements for a Qantas award, or the judge may have considered blogs as personal journals rather than harder news and opinion sites. The guidance given to judges on this was scanty, and so the judge was within his or her right to determine eligibility.
The third possible cause is that Kiwiblog was deemed by the judge to be inferior to the three finalists. That depends in part on the criteria used by the judge (these were not made clear to judges) and by the judge’s opinion.
Most likely, and by far, is the first.
The Qantas awards are the premier journalism award, and to be Highly Commended or to win an award is an honour. The online categories are still in their infancy, so I expect the quality and quantity of submissions to grow each year. So next year let’s make sure that we get as many applications as possible.