July 11th, 2011

Business Meeting

Business Meeting Editing

I spent much of yesterday editing the video of the Westercon 64 Business Meeting. I'm glad we did a two-camera shoot, even though I used almost none of the footage from Camera 1, because if we'd only recorded Camera 1, we would have had pretty bad audio. For some reason, even though the two cameras were roughly symmetrically arranged, Camera 2 (the one to stage right, where Lisa was) picked up the audio in the room much better, so I mostly stuck with it except for a few "fill" shots where sound wasn't that important.

It appears to take about as much time for MovieMaker to generate a video as the video itself runs, and possibly longer, so I left it cranking away on the job this morning when I headed to the office. Assuming it finishes without an error, when I get home tonight after BASFA I will start the long process of uploading the video to Vimeo. (YouTube's upload limits would make a 2h15m video impossible.) Then Vimeo will think about it for a while. I will announce when the video is finished.

Watching myself preside, I'm annoyed with all of the technical and mechanical errors I made along the way. Most of you there may not have noticed them, and those who did, like Ben Yalow, apparently decided that they weren't substantive enough to justify calling me on, for which I'm grateful. Also, being able to think about my rulings in colder blood leaves me wondering if I made the right call. This isn't just a theoretical question. Since this situation has never come up since the current version of Westercon Site Selection was established, everything I did was precedent-setting, and I am worried that I may have set bad precedents should this situation ever happen again.

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For all of the parliamentary pain we went through, I still think the Westercon system is the right one. I've heard more than one person complain that we shouldn't even count votes for ineligible candidates, or else we should adopt the Worldcon system whereby votes for ineligible bids are dropped after the first round. To that I point out that the alternative there is for semi-serious protest bids like Granzella's to tell their supporters to vote None of the Above as their first choice. Had that happened in this election, NOTA would have polled 43 votes and won the election, and we would have ended up in the Business Meeting anyway, except this time, we couldn't have even considered a bid from the Portland group that originally bid, or (in my opinion) any group substantially the same as Portland's bid. That would actually have been worse, as under the circumstances that actually obtained, Portland had one last chance to pull out a victory had they done a better job of presenting themselves to the Business Meeting.

I think that semi-serious bid like Granzella's and Tonopah last year act as a valuable safety valve in our election process, as they remind fully-serious bidders that even being the only candidate on the ballot is no guarantee of success unless you actually prove that you can "show openers" in our political process by presenting a credible bid. Poker players may consider it as requiring bids to have "jacks or better" to stay in the game.
Business Meeting

Upload Ho

I have started the long process of uploading the 339 MB video of the Westercon Business Meeting. Once it's uploaded to Vimeo, I'll have to wait until they release it before posting an announcement.

While reviewing it, I noticed a typographical error in one of the titles. I decided that it wasn't worth the >2 hours it would take to regenerate the fix the typo.