[Worldcon] Main WSFS Business Meeting Liveblog 7

PLEASE NOTE: My profound apologies in advance to anyone whose name I missed or misspelled. If you stumble across this blog and would like me to correct it, please just comment!

People are still filing in and dealing with the sign up sheet, so it’ll be a few more minutes before we get started. I’ll update this post as things happen. If you’re not sure what will be on the agenda today, you can get an idea from yesterday’s liveblog.

Also as a reminder: If you are someone who is interested in the YA Hugo issue, VOLUNTEER TO BE ON THE COMMITTEE. To do this, you need to speak to Donald Eastlake, the chair, before close of business on the Sunday meeting. Just stop by one of the meetings, he’ll be at the front.

And now I will eat my apple while I wait for things to get started…

1009: Meeting is called to order. Donald covers the procedure about speaking, etc.

1012: Kevin Standlee has uploaded the raw video from yesterday. Asking for donations to cover the high speed internet for the upload.

1014: Going over what we’ll be voting on today, quick review of the committees, noted the newly created committee yesterday.

1016: No objections to agenda as stated.

1016: First item: Worldcon Publications constitutional amendment. Five minute debate time. But I think we’re debating the amendment to the motion first.

1017: Lisa Hayes, author of amendment: The idea is to remove the financial burden of the paper publications by telling Worldcons to just charge people who want paper pubs instead of paying for it themselves.

1017: Colin Harris: Publications are not defined in the constitution, not everyone gets sent everything. The practice of publication distribution isn’t very consistent. Thinks it’s best to not put specific details, since it’s not defined in the constitution that Worldcon even has to be five days or in the summer, for example. Wants to just simplify the language even more so that committees can operate on common sense.

1020: Lisa Hayes doesn’t feel that her original language was not overcomplicated.

1021: ???: It’s nuts to try to figure out how much something costs up front.

1022: Amendment passes with simplified language.

1023: Back to the original motion, which is now out of debate time. Moved and seconded to extend the debate time by five minutes. Less than 2/3 in favor, debate time not extended.

1023: Motion is passed.

1024: Now on to No Representation Without Taxation amendment.

1024: Priscilla Olson says that this amendment was not intended to keep poor or young people from voting, but we’re all in this together. Notes that the original name “No Cheap Voting” was unfortunate. [Personally, I don’t think this new name is any better.]

1026: Against, Christopher J Garcia: as a broke American, feels this disallows a minimum of participation. A voting only membership would be the most basic way to spread participation in the Hugos and WSFS as a whole.

1027: Dave McCarty (sp? sorry!) This would dissociate the Hugos from WSFS and the Worldcon if a voting only membership was created. This is heinous to him.

1027: Against, Warren Buff: Agrees in principle that we should keep the membership rights together. Feels the next amendment would do a better job of it. In favor of the next amendment, against this one.

1028: Glen (????): If you can have a Hugo only membership, you can have a site selection only membership. And thinks this is distorting and weird.

1029: Against, Perry (???): This sends the wrong message to fandom at large. Says this is exclusionary and gives the idea that we don’t want them to participate. Does not want to unbundle rights, but is against setting a minimum price.

1031: Rick Kovalick: “I don’t trust Worldcon.” Something to do with the best dramatic presentation category.

1031: Against, Stephen (didn’t catch last name): Why are people trying to circumscribe innovation? This will lock the price in, which is bad. Worldcon should be inclusive.

1033: Mike (???) moves to refer this to committee, since membership is ill-defined in the constitution. Motion is seconded.

1034: Kevin Standlee: Moves to amend the motion to commit by referring the Keep Us Together motion to committee as well. Seconded.

1036: Okay so first we have a motion to commit both items at the same time, then we have to vote on the motion to commit for real. This is complicated shit.

1037: Motion to commit both together passes. Motion to send both to committee passes. Donald Eastlake will now take volunteers and appoint the committee. IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN THIS ISSUE, TALK TO DONALD ASAP AND VOLUNTEER.

1039: Now time for the WSFS Accountability Act of 2013. Starting off complicated by proposing to clarify the text. The new text is… not something I’m going to type out for you. But it’s a lot shorter, I’ll tell you that.

1041: New text read a second time by Donald.

1042: Dave McCarty suggests a change to the changed language. Wants to change “person submitting” to “persons certifying and submitting.” No objection to changing that language. No objection to the new language for the amendment.

1043: Issue is called to vote without debate. No objection. Motion passes.

1043: Expansion of Best Fan Artist category.

1044: Joshua Kronengold speaks for: fans work in all sorts of media, he wants to clarify this will be for all media, not just for visual artists and cartoonists. Also wants to clarify the public display of qualifying art must be non-commercial like with fanzines.

1045: Ben Yalow against: Supports the non-commercial in, since that’s a good clarification. But does not like opening it in to performance media. Most performance media is already covered by dramatic presentation. Moves to strike all changes but the “non-professional”. Seconded.

1046: Not all performance art is covered by dramatic presentation, such as musicians. Agrees that things shouldn’t be qualified for more than one category, feels that this would narrow things too much.

1047: Colin Harris for amendment to the motion: we do have ways to recognize things like music, such as best related work. Doesn’t feel we should be shuffling animation and filks into what has always been a visual art category.

1048: Seth Breitbart: This is for an artist, not for a specific work of art.

1049: Kevin Standlee asks to have the modified language read. Asks for unanimous consent for… something, and nope.

1051: Rich (???) feels that other types of art are adequately covered and costuming for example is more a craft than an art (at which point a low murmur sweeps over the crowd because THEM’S FIGHTIN’ WORDS).

1052: Debate time has run out. Motion to extend debate by five minutes is passed.

1053: Colin Harris again, asking unanimous consent to change his amendment language again to add back in that conventions are okay for display so that there’s no ambiguity. Unanimous consent is not given.

1054: Move to suspend rules to allow this amendment without unanimous consent.

1055: The added language passes. And now back to the original amendment to the amendment. Yes it really is getting this convoluted.

1055: Donald reads the new language…

1056: Chris Garcia likes this for retaining the word cartoonist. He feels removing the word would strike a blow against the long history of cartoonists in fandom.

1056: (???) The addition of ‘any medium’ does include cartoonists.

1057: Priscilla (???) Most of us are not qualified to discern between art and crafts, dramatic and not. Thinks opening up this category really starts blurring the lines about what we want to do.

1058: New language for the amendment passes.

1058: Move to extend debate time is seconded but does not pass.

1058: The amendment with the modified language passes. This means that fan artist is still basically defined as a visual category, but the constitution is clarified to note that display of the art is non-professional.

1059: Moving on to candidate elections.

1100: Mark Protection Committee election: no objection, the members are elected for three year terms.

1102: Next, the amendments proposed by the committees.

1103: Two-Thirds Is Good Enough, Part 1Kevin S in favor, pointing out that everywhere else in the constitution, a supermajority is 2/3 and not 3/4. Consistency.

1104: (???) “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.” Doesn’t think it’s necessary.

1104: (???) Extensions should be hard to get; should require more than a simple majority. But does not think they should be that much harder to get. Extensions have provided good candidates in the past and will continue to do so.

1105: Merkel (???)

1105: Kate Seacourt: Do we really need to be ANY MORE SURE OF OURSELVES to extend eligibility than we are to amend the constitution that gave us the power to do this in the first place?

1106: (????) We only have one shot at the extension vote, we should get it right.

1107: Howard Rosenblat (????) Agrees with Ben Yalow’s analysis. 2/3 super majority is the standard. 3/4 sends a message, that’s not one we want to send.

1107: Debate is up. Motion passes.

1108: 2/3 is enough part two, move to call to question. And this one passes as well. [This was pretty darn funny, actually. You can’t call to question until someone speaks, so someone said, “I refer you to the points previously made” then it got called to question again. Okay maybe you had to be there.]

1109: We Don’t Need Another HEROW. Basically the HEROW gets passed every year, can’t we just make it permanent? There are currently 3 extended eligibility clauses in the constitution. Anything not originally in English already gets an extension. The critical mass of active nominators remains US members, and that’s likely to continue for a long time. So let’s just permanently extend for the works first published outside the US. Notes several advantages. He exhausts the time in favor.

1114: Mark Merkelson against: argues that markets are converging, for example because of the rising popularity of ebooks. The day will come when this is not necessary. Thinks we should keep it every year and hope for the day we won’t need it.

1116: (???) against: Something not published in the US is not significantly disadvantaged.

1117: A question about the language I am confused sorry.

1118: Ben Yalow against: It used to be hard to get overseas books. A good British author will have his books immediately known in the US. The markets have converged.

1119: Debate exhausted, motion to extend debate fails.

1120: Vote is called. Have to do this one as a serpentine. 49 in favor. 32 against. The motion carries and will appear next year for ratification.

1122: Financial reports.

1123: Ben Yalow proposes new business, removing the parts of the constitution that restrict the regions for the elected members of the Mark Protection committee.

1124: Ben Yalow for: The zone system was originally to move the Worldcon around. We got rid of that in everything but the Mark Protection Committee. No reason to keep it.

1125: Kate Seacourt against (???) Given what the committee does, and since trademark rules vary, it might be valuable to retain people who can speak to local issues when they come up

1126: Mark Merkelson–I kind of missed his points. >.> Sorry.

1127: Kevin S against: Feels there is still some value to having regional diversity, questions if people would be so happy if all nine elected members came from California.

1128: Andrew (???) Feels that the geographical movement of the Worldcons and with members elected at each Worldcon means ensures regional diversity.

1130: Motion to refer this to a committee. Motion fails.

1132: And then the new amendment passes.

1134: Meeting is adjourned.

ETA1: Corrected name spelling of “Collin” to “Colin.”

ETA2: More name corrections thanks to the lovely commenters. :)

7 thoughts on “[Worldcon] Main WSFS Business Meeting Liveblog

  1. Reply Nojay Aug 31,2013 12:07

    Thanks again for your liveblogging efforts.

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  4. Reply Christopher J Garcia Sep 1,2013 09:11

    Good stuff! The “I don’t Trust WOrldCons was Rick Kovalcik! And you scored McCarty in one! That one took me years!

  5. Reply Clark Wierda Sep 5,2013 01:17

    The Lisa at the top is Lisa Hayes.

  6. Reply Clark Wierda Sep 5,2013 01:28

    Sorry to put this in two comments (I hope it is only two).

    @1044, the fellow listed as submitting that proposal is Joshua Kronengold

    The gentleman in the bow tie is Ben Yalow.

    Thanks for the posts on the process.

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