April 2nd, 2013

Hugo Sign

Bad for My Blood Pressure

Yet another post about how awful it is the Hugo Awards don't go to the works that I personally like.

With added points for people saying how terrible it is that Americans hold all of the Worldcons (by people who I doubt understand how Worldcon sites are selected) and that it's awful that those horrible smoffers don't roll over and change things to suit ME ME ME.

There are vaguely plausible points here, but they're buried in assumptions that, in my opinion, make it hard to take the rest of the argument seriously. And seriously, you are never going to get any award, from the Hugos to the Nebulas to the Golden Globes to the Oscars, to take the word "Best" out of their category titles just to suit your silly sense of "rightness."

Too Much Like Hard Work

While driving home tonight, I think I figured out one of the reasons that the demands from people over here that The Hugo Awards must be changed to suit them, (although of course they'd never actually join a Worldcon or go to one, or even if they did, they wouldn't participate in the Business Meeting) get me so angry. As you know, I'm Chairman of the WSFS Mark Protection Committee, which manages the service marks owned by WSFS, including "Hugo Award." These people are demanding that the Hugo Award should be given over to them, run by the way they want it, but they don't see why there should be any reason they should lift a finger (except for typing on their keyboards) or spend the slightest bit of resources to be part of the Awards. We should just give it to them, because of course they're right.

Imagine that you've invented what you're convinced is the Best Cola Drink Evar. You know so much more about how soft drinks should be made and marketed that you go to the Coca-Cola company and say, "Throw out that old formula you're using, use mine instead, follow all of my instructions on how to run your company, and give me all of the money you make because of course I'm much smarter than you are and setting up a new company from scratch is too much like Hard Work."

Do you think Coca-Cola would pay any attention to you? If so, then what makes you think that the people who jointly own the Hugo Awards and the other WSFS service marks should pay attention to you when you demand that we should change to suit you? Just because you read SF/F doesn't mean you own the Hugo Awards. Heck, even I don't own even as the head of the committee that manages them; I just protect them from people who attack them and want to steal them for themselves.

I've told one of those people that if they're so convinced that They Know Best, they should set up the Global Science Fiction Society, presenting the Global Science Fiction Awards, possibly known as the "Gernsback," and that they should run their society and awards by their O So Perfect system and see if anyone pays attention to them. But don't go trying to steal other people's intellectual property and service marks just because setting up a new society and new awards is Too Much Like Hard Work.