WSFS Meeting #4 (Sunday): Liveblog 10

1334: Freedom indeed. This is Rachael, signing off.

1333: The business meeting of the 73rd Worldcon is adjourned in memory of Bobbie Default and Peggy Rae Sapienza is adjourned. To loud cries of FREEEEEDOOOOOOM

1332: Dashoff the Elder makes a motion to commend Kevin Standlee. Standing ovation.

1330: Kevin Standlee thanks all of the staff, and all of us for acting in a generally civilized manner. We have dealt with the largest agenda he’s ever seen. We should be proud of ourselves, and at KS orders that we have a round of applause.

1330: Electronic Signatures is adopted and will be passed to next Worldcon for ratification.

1329: Now it’s time for the adopt the amendment as proposed by the committee.

1329: First dealing with amendment to strike the language. Amendment fails.

1327: Motion to call the previous question. The previous question is ordered by 2/3 majority.

1327: Kronengold personally agrees, but does not wish it to be enshrined in the constitution.

1326: Terry Neil is still Terry Neil and speaks against Kronengold’s motion. The meeting has, in the past, adopted many motions that advise and do not require.

1324: Kronengold has a proposal. He proposes that the first section be struck because it’s redundant. Seconded.

1324: NOW we can debate the substance of the proposal.

1323: KS reads the language. Okay. FINALLY. We adopt the substitute proposal.

1321: PI by Quinn: what is the matter on the floor? Whether we’re going to accept the substitute language or not.

1320: There is a conflict because Ms. Dashoff has information on the substantive debate. However right now we need to decide which language we’re going to have that substantive debate over.

1317: Dashoff the younger says this really doesn’t change anything. And I’m not sure what his point is.

1316: Terry Neill wishes to emphasize that this is a may and not a shall. Not a mandate on the seated WorldCon.

1315: Judith Bemis says they need more data to figure this process out and wants it sent back to committee so that all issues in administering site selection can be considered.

1313: There is an objection to accepting the substitute language. Secor speaks in favor of the committee’s language. Feels that this version of the motion, while explicitly not speaking to any specific means, it allows the committee to use electronic signature means that they judge worthwhile. This does place a small burden on the WorldCon committee by requiring them to offer a third option for publications. It is up to each WorldCon to decide what means they will use at time.

1312: KS reads compromise language for Electronic Signature amendment.

1311: Motion to adjourn fails by a lot.

1310: Creator of Electronic Signature motion asks that we please consider this, the compromise is good and shouldn’t take up too much time.

1308: Kovalcik speaks against the motion to adjourn. He would like to at least hear the electronic signature committee’s report.

1308: Olson moves to adjourn and kill all pending motions. (Electronic Signature is all that’s left.)

1307: 60 in the negative. Nominee Diversity is adopted and sent on to next year’s WorldCon for nomination.

1305: 71 in the affirmative. Time for the other side of the serpentine.


1302: Now voting on the motion as amended.

1301: Voting on the amendment first; affirmative has it.

1300: Olson moves to close debate on amendment and proposal. Debate is closed on all pending questions.

1256: There’s been an amendment from Kate Secor to treat co-authoring teams as separate creative teams. This seems fair.

1255: Kronengold asks if this passes, how would this address single author works and multi-author works.

1252: Kronengold says this is undemocratic.

1249: Question from Gary Blog regarding the case of someone like Moffat writing episodes for many different series. Eastlake says in this case, the personnel are ignored, only the series is relevant.

1248: Eastlake notes that this will address the issue of a single series or author crowding out other nominees. This motion is designed to control majorities from dominating categories, unlike proposals like EPH that only control minorities.

1246: Next matter is B16, Nominee Diversity.

1245: Best Series is referred to committee consisting of Buff, Dashoff, and whoever else they choose. This will be dealt with at the end of the meeting.

1244: Warren Buff moves that Best Series be sent to committee to report back next year.

1244: Meeting called back to order.

1234: 5 minute recess.

1233: 82 in the negative for 4 and 6. DANG. 4 and 6 is adopted and passed on to next year’s WorldCon for ratification.

1231: 86 in the affirmative for 4 and 6. Serpentine for the negative votes begins.


1225: Motion to end debate passes; debate is closed. There’s some noodling about trying to continue. (Shit I just realized this would have been the sunset clause amendment and we didn’t get to add it! Agh!)

1223: Rich Horton for: Having more good works to read is a feature, not a bug. Wider set of a potential winners.

1223: Was this Kronengold? Lowering the number of nominations hurts systems like EPH. We already have fix works to consider in each category. Don’t want more to have to read!

1221: Lisa Hayes for: this is a simple system to address the power of a slate. This also will indicate to people that they do not have to fill in the entire form instead of stretching. Simple and straightforward.

1221: John Seghers against: This is an ill considered measure to address a problem that it won’t effectively address.

1219: Mr. Big Heart for: opposes EPH, but it is clear something needs to be done to deal with slates. Wants to pass this in the hopes that people will realize EPH is a terrible idea and this will provide a backup plan for that realization.

1218: Dara Korra’ti against: in an open and fair political system, one party defeats no parties in all cases. What this initiative ignores is that one part is followed by the creation of opposition parties. This does not address the probably proliferation of opposition slates. This would make the Hugos solely into a political football to be tossed back and forth. This system does not discourage slates, it mandates them.

1217: Gerrib for, says that it can be gamed, but the point to make it harder since there were slate discipline problems.

1216: [Name missed] indicates that it can be trivially gamed.

1215: Desjardins in favor of his own proposal. It limits the damage done by slates, it doesn’t place an undue burden, and it won’t cost much.

1213: And… 4 and 6 wins. WOW WE HAVE WASTED SOME TIME. Dashoff notes that if it passes we will call it 4 and 6 next year too.

1213: I am loving watching the sign language interpreter for this.

1211: Voting on various combinations, also not going to detail this.

1210: Learned Foote asks what happens if there is no majority. Basically, we get punished by having to do it over again.

1208: Debate runs out, now we’re going to fill in the blanks. Strong reminder from KS how this works, no questions.

1207: Quinn makes the point that this is compatible with EPH, but larger numbers makes EPH more effective.

1206: Milt Stevens argues that any number of nominations less than five will make people feel like they’ve been robbed. Having more slots gives more choice.

1201: Taking number suggestions. I am not going to record all of these, you can watch the video later if you want.

1159: KS reminds us that each member has the right but not the obligation to suggest one set of numbers. Positive integers only. Anything else will be considered frivolous and not entertained.

1158: Motion is not laid on the table by vote.

1157: PI from Kate Secor, have we addressed the question enough that we could adjourn indefinitely after it has been laid on the table.

1156: Lincoln last-name-not-visible moves to lay the motion on the table.

1156: Steven Desjardins asks if we change the numbers, will the title of the amendment change? Yes, it will be called something logical, the title isn’t an official thing.

1153: Goldstein wishes to amend to add a sunset clause, but this is not in order until the blanks have been dealt with.

1152: Eastlake notes that for next year, at ratification time, it would be considered a lesser change to change the numbers if they are moving closer to the current value of five.

1150: Quinn moves to reserve two minutes of debate time for use discussing which blanks to fill. Passes; we will have a brief discussion of the numbers before voting on the fill in the blank.

1148: Move to consider the fill in the blanks by ascending rather than descending order does not pass.

1145: Committee of the Whole considered 4 and 6 and recommended that other combinations of nominations allowed and finalist slots by fill in the blank.

1143: Rules are suspended by vote and we move to B11, 4 and 6.

1142: Eric Schulman moves that we consider 4/6 next. Seconded.

1141: Meeting called back to order.

1128: Meeting is in recess until at least 1140 AM.

1126: 62 against EPH. E Pluribus Hugo is adopted.

1124: 186 in the affirmative for EPH. Time for those opposed to be counted!

1122: I am number 66 for. Serpentine continues.


1118: Voting on EPH. KS thinks affirmative has it, but a serpentine needs to be done.

1117: John Ohallaran against: We have seen the voters will respond to slates and defeat them–time runs out. Motion to extend to debate, which fails.

1116: Mr. Big Heart (Yalow) against after thanking everyone. He got a standing ovation, and well deserved. :) Anyway, Ben agrees with Pomerantz. We need to be perceived as fair.

1114: Rick Kovalcik notes that the problem is nominations, not votes for the purposes of numbers. People should volunteer to help Lorentz. Go help pack out at 4pm.

1113: Rich Lynch against: agrees with Pomerantz that this is gaming the system against the previous gaming of the system. Two wrongs don’t make a right. This is a one year aberration. (It’s not. At the least, last year showed slate effect.)

1111: Mark Olson against: he wants to believe in this, but he is not convinced. “Complexity is the enemy of legitimacy.” Wants to know if we think we could go and explain to a random fan right now how this works. (Honestly, I don’t think I could explain the current preferential voting system as is.)

1110: Rabblereader has a question regarding the motion passed previously about the anonymized voting data. The data hasn’t been released to EPH because the administrators were super busy last night.

1109: Ms. Dashoff (considered against) asking what the nominees would have looked like under EPH this year.

1105-1109: Dara Korra’ti for: the previous slate has been fueled by resentment. The populist feeling that what you deserve has been stolen. Monahan tries to make a point of order that puppies are being slandered and KS rules that no one is being individually picked on and his point is out of order. Dara continues on that the charge is already out there and is out there now, and has been fueled by the results of last night. So Pomerantz’s point is not valid for that. Dara brings up the existence of opposition slates. Lord Voldemort has announced intention to continue attack on this exploit. Runs out of time.

1103: John Pomerantz against: he works on election laws. Notes fandom has been ahead of much of the world for many years because they have a preferential system. EPH has developed a more perfect voting system. But our current and imperfect system seems to be working. Fandom will clearly not accept slate voting, and insists that the best works will rise and fall on their merits. The biggest concern with adopting this now is that there will be accusations of gaming the system. (There are already such accusations. They will say whatever they like.)

1102: PI, nothing done this year will effect what happens at MidAmericaCon. The earliest possible effect will be at Worldcon 75’s Hugos.

1101: Mike Johns moves to amend, but is not seconded. Motion dies. (I had no idea what the heck the motion was supposed to do.)

1059: Dave Oneil for: This is an exploit, it has happened once. If we believe it won’t happen again we are kidding ourselves. The people who slated this year will be able to do it again next year.

1057: Glazer against: Finds the “people won’t understand it” argument repugnant; he and other fans aren’t dumb. However, believes this is a style over substance issue; he doesn’t believe the question of what problem we’re trying to solve hasn’t been sufficiently answered. Hasty generalization. Also there is no algorithm. It’s not testable in the formal sense. Believes this will shake faith in the Hugos.

1056: Motion does not pass; we don’t have 2/3.

1056: Dashoff the elder moves to call the question.

1055: One minute recess for technical.

1052: Rhett for: one of the big complaints is that people won’t understand this. He has undertaken it to see if people who didn’t understand the voting system could comprehend this. Most people don’t understand instant runoff voting, and they still use it just fine for site selection. You can manually do this process, if slowly. Neither of these are concerns. Once we had explained instant runoff voting, no one took more than three minutes to understand how EPH works.

1052: Against because it would also kill natural/accidental slates.

1051: Wendy Delmeter in favor: Comes out as sad puppy and says she likes this proposal because it would have stopped the rabid puppies from hijacking the sad puppies.

1049: Buff against: This is going to be a problem with new votes. It appears that this would want bullet voting, so a partially informed voters will be disenfranchised.

1047: Ramez Naam, who is a writer. Wishes to point out that there were many authors who did not make it onto the nominees list because of the slate, who deserved to be considered. Many of the authors were young and could have used the boost to the career. They deserve a system that allows them to get on the ballot and not get screwed by slates.

1045: Monohan against EPH: This is just a different way of manipulating votes and it’s complicated, and it won’t get new voters in to vote for the Hugos.

1044: Jack Foy in favor of EPH, wrt Lorentz: He’s making a statement as far as how much more support the Hugo Administrators need; we have the ability to help and should do so. It is not hard to code the algorithm.

1043: Sunset clause is added to EPH with unanimous consent.

1042: PI from Quinn: is there a way as one of the co-authors of EPH to accept as a friendly amendment. KS: There is no such thing as a friendly amendment. Once a proposal is on the floor, it does not belong to you, it belongs to the assembly.

1041: PI on if the motion as stated put a sunset clause that requires re-ratification and if not ratified, will automatically end EPH. Yes, this language is standard.

1040: Move to amend EPH to require re-ratification in 2022 (this would be a five year sunset) and re-ratification will automatically be on the table for the 2022 business meeting.

1037: Lorentz continues with the note that this will ultimately give less time to the voters to consider the nominees because more time will be required for administration.

1036: Question for Lorentz: Aware that data normalization has to be done–member must yield the floor due to not asking the question quickly. (Man, there is a lot of snippy murmuring in the audience both ways.)

1031: Lorentz against the proposal: Speaking as a Hugo administrator, there are problems with this proposal. No way to check this manually. This adds fifty hours of work to the Hugo Administrator. It’s getting more complicated every year. Fans have a bad habit of misspelling things and not writing the titles the same way every time.

1030: Watt: Confident we can get this done. How many more years of no award do you want? The exploit is known and out there.

1028: Watt: As we saw last night, we can always vote no award. But this exploit is known and should be fixed. Strong proponent of increasing the number of voters; slates can still dominate. When you only need 15% to wipe out an entire category, it needs to be addressed.

1027: Watt: EPH does not detect slates. It is not a political movement. If 20% of the voters have a strong opinion, they should get a slot. However it pits slated works against each other, and tends to whittle the slates down to a single work. Under current system, a slate can take all slots. Under EPH, a modeled slate such as this only gets one.

1025: Watt goes through the process using 2013 as a model, with a set of slate ballots added for the model.

1021: Mr. Watt is recognized. 36 minutes of debate are allowed. Note that 10-15% of fans can currently control the finalists. Each time one of the works on your ballot is eliminated, the remaining works are weighted more heavily.

1020: Move to suspend the rules to take up EPH now.

1016: Move to reconsider the language of B15 (Multiple Nominees) with a bit of clearer language.

1014: Brief break to deal with mic sound.

1009:Review of agenda items, pending and not. B13 (Best Series), B18 (Electronic Signature), B11 (4/6), B14 (EPH), B16 (Nominee Diversity) are still pending. That is the current agenda order.

1008: Note, once we have considered the three items specifically scheduled for today, the motion to adjourn completely can be brought up and everything else dies.

1006: Introduction of staff, as usual. Reminder to please check the Worldcon Events channel on youtube for recordings of these meetings.

1005: Meeting is called to order. LET’S GET READY TO RUMBLE.

0955: Okay, liveblog getting set up. Today promises to be a wild ride; we’re going to vote on 4/6 and E Pluribus Hugo at the very least. And to everyone who has thanked me, you are welcome! (And to everyone who has said I’m dapper, gosh. Thank you!)

10 thoughts on “WSFS Meeting #4 (Sunday): Liveblog

  1. Reply Kendall Aug 23,2015 15:35

    Thank you SO MUCH!!!!!!

  2. Reply Cat Aug 23,2015 15:38

    Wow! At one point I was biting my nails and hitting refresh on not one, but two live blogs of the business meeting of a con I’ve never been to. This Hugo season has been one of new experiences, for sure!

    Thank you for your liveblogging efforts, and your support of EPH!

  3. Reply San Jose Left Shark (@kshandra) Aug 23,2015 15:41

    Thank you for doing this. (Minor point: Bobbie DuFault’s name is misspelled.)

  4. Reply Ravenshaw Aug 23,2015 16:15

    Thanks very much for doing this, your liveblogs over the last four days have been excellent.

  5. Reply Joel Zakem Aug 23,2015 16:17

    Much thanks for doing this.

  6. Reply David Goldfarb Aug 23,2015 16:57

    While we’re at correcting people’s names, every instance of “Watts” should be “Watt”.

  7. Pingback: Brief(?) Summary and Commentary on Saturday and Sunday WSFS Meetings ← Rachael Acks: Sound and Nerdery

  8. Reply Tim Illingworth Aug 24,2015 00:53

    Mike Johns @ 1101: IIRC this amendment was for what to do if the cage match is a tie. The current wording throws out both/all; he wanted to pick one at random to die.

  9. Reply Tim Illingworth Aug 24,2015 00:58

    Yes, it will be called something logical, the title isn’t an official thing

    Ha! I once put in a pair of amendments titled “An Alligator Sandwich” and “Another Alligator”. IIRC both passed.

    Well, everyone knows you need a snappy short title, right?

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