While I was away from the Internet for a little over a week:
- World Con 75-some polar bear fur ruffled
- Best Series Hugo announced
- Vox Day launched Infogalactic
- A huge fannish ruckus broke out between two members of the Helsinki World Con concom, one of whom was a department head who ended up being fired. This being the age of social media, the ugliness hit the fan and for some of us reading all the he said, she said, and then the chairs said, it even overshadowed American elections. I wasted several hours trying to catch up on all this, still haven’t read everything on the SMOF mailing list. The SMOF list is a closed group, but if you are curious, check out File 770, this post in particular http://file770.com/?p=31221
In some ways, the whole thing is a tempest in a teapot, but it does raise important issues, and questions conrunners will have to tackle sooner rather than later.
One of the wags on File 770 commented that Vox Day was probably watching all this unfold while munching popcorn. As it happened, he was, but when he stuck his foot into the muddy waters, everyone got off their high horses, apologies were issued, inflammatory posts taken down–in short, peace broke out. Think we should send VD to the Middle East?
2) On a happier note, Helsinki is giving the Hugo for best series a trial run. http://www.thehugoawards.org/2016/09/helsinki-to-trial-best-series/
Montrealers remember that we gave the Hugo for best graphic novel a trial run, and it is now officially a Hugo category.
A list of series that could be eligible was published on File 770. Predictably, another hissy fit erupted, don’t read the comments. http://file770.com/?p=30940
3) On Thanksgiving Day, Vox Day launched Infogalactic because, you know, Wikipedia has thought police. You can read the press release here. The more I look at it, the funnier it gets. For instance:
Infogalactic’s anti-bias architecture will permit users to select their preferred perspective and automatically see the version of the subject page that is closest to it based on a series of algorithms utilizing three variables, Relativity, Reliability, and Notability. This means a supporter of Hillary Clinton will see a different version of the current Donald Trump page than a Donald Trump supporter will, as both users will see the version of the page that was most recently edited by editors with perspective ratings similar to his own.
“The single biggest problem with Wikipedia isn’t Jimmy Wales or its outmoded 1995 technology, but the fact that it is patrolled by 532 left-wing thought police who aggressively force their biased perspective on the rest of the world,” Vox Day, aka “Fenris” on Infogalactic, added. “This isn’t Conservapedia 2.0 and we aren’t replacing Wikipedia’s admins with their conservative equivalent, we are making the function of thought police irrelevant through technology. Our design philosophy is based on the idea that only the user has the right to define what his reality is.”
I can’t even begin to parse what he means by this. Especially after reading the 7 Canons.
Just how are Starlords different from “thought police”? The Corelords can buy their status??
I clicked on “random page” and got Bear Flat which I then looked up on Wikipedia. Exactly the same page, except Infogalactic has ” From Infogalactic: the planetary knowledge core” where wiki has ” From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia” .