As before, here I’m going to be free with my commentary instead of limiting myself to mostly parenthetical statements. Amendments will be referred to by name. For details and summary, please see the Sasquan agenda.
Liveblog for Saturday here.
Liveblog for Sunday here.
Playlist for all segments of the business meeting here.
This meeting was relatively short, because the room was needed for other programming at 1300, and plus they wanted to have the WorldCon chairs photo session. Important points:
- The meeting started off with the official site selection for 2017. Helsinki won, and presented the con heads and their website. They received a check for $23,000, passed on from the last of Millenium Phillcon’s funds.
- The “Story by Any Other Name” amendment from LonCon 3 was passed and added to constitution. This will close the audiobook loophole, for example, allowing stories that originally appeared as audiobooks to be considered with their fellow works of fiction instead of as podcasts or related works.
- “WSFS Membership Types and Rates” amendment from LonCon 3 passed without objection and was added to the constitution.
- “Hugo Finalist” amendment from LonCon 3 passed without objection and was added to the constitution. This was just a word term change.
- Starting on new business for this year–this is stuff that if passed will go on to be ratified (or not) next year in Kansas City. This is where things started getting contentious.
- The 5% Solution passed. (Thank fuck.)
- The Multiple Nominations amendment passed.
- Nominee Diversity was laid on the table to be taken up on Sunday after EPH was considered.
- Tom Monaghan (apologies, I believe I have been spelling his last name wrong this entire time in my liveblogs, mea culpa) attempted to permanently adjourn the business meeting for this year and thus kill all remaining business. I found this personally very aggravating, as it seemed to be a very transparent attempt to get rid of all potential discussion and fixes with regards to the Hugo issues. Monaghan had already made it pretty clear to anyone who could overhear him arguing that he was a “puppy” of some stripe, including complaints about people defaming puppies in debate, which were for the most part not supported by the chair. The motion was ultimately disallowed due to arcane parliamentary stuff, but I think that it would have failed anyway if put to a vote.
- The meeting ended with a motion, unanimously approved, that when the business meeting did finally adjourn on Sunday, it would be in memory of Bobbie DuFault and Peggy Rae Sapienza.
This is where things got really contentious.
- E Pluribus Hugo was taken up immediately via suspension of the rules. Passed via serpentine.
- Ramez Naam, who is a writer, made the point beautifully about why slates are pieces of shit (my words, not his) by naming a sampling of works and authors who got screwed by the slates this year.
- The point was made again and again that it’s total bullshit that 10-15% of the electorate can entirely control who shows up on the ballot.
- Dara Korra’ti (I hope I spelled her name right) made the point beautifully across EPH and 4/6 that in a system without parties, an organized party will prevail. And she had every right to indicate that this was political because it’s been made so explicitly political by the people who started it.
- A lot of people complained that EPH is complicated and that will alter how people vote. Considering it is about how nominations are counted, not indicated by members, I don’t really buy this argument. Also, the current system is complex in its own right as well. If you asked me to explain preferential voting to someone, I don’t think I’d be able to do a good job of it.
- Anyway, I’m glad EPH passed. What I’m really hoping is that once they’ve got the nomination data they requested, we’ll get a good presentation about how it would have changed things this year, and we can move forward.
- Also a point to consider: anything we voted affirmatively on this year is not yet part of the constitution. Nothing changes unless and until these are ratified next year. So by the time we take up this business at next year’s meeting, we’ll be well aware if the Hugos are once more covered with puppy shit.
- I still believe that if EPH stops Doctor Who from dominating short form drama, that is a feature and not a bug.
- EPH has a built-in five year sunset clause by amendment.
- 4 and 6 also passed on a serpentine vote. This one made me kind of crazy because we spent a ridiculous amount of time noodling about if we’d use the numbers 4 and 6 or something different, and then just used 4 and 6 anyway. Much like how 90% of the time we just use the chair’s suggested debate time after 10 minutes of arguing about allowing more or less. Hrngh.
- So noted that supposedly, this system can work in conjunction with EPH just fine. Though in my opinion, if we were to ratify EPH next year, I’ll feel a lot less compelled to ratify this one as well unless someone makes a compelling argument as to the contrary.
- Just another shout-out to Dara, whose points on this as far as 4 and 6 doing nothing to discourage slating, were totally on point. This method could defeat one slate if it didn’t have great discipline. But if we start getting in to slates and counter slates (very likely if things continue in this year’s melodramatic style) it’s going to be a fucking mess for anyone who doesn’t want to slate.
- This one lacks a sunset clause. I think at this point, everyone was getting pretty tired and we just didn’t manage to get the timing right on amending it.
- Nominee Diversity passes on a serpentine vote. Not much to say here other than I was in favor of it because I’m in favor of anything that spreads the love, so to speak.
- Best Series, by request of its originator, was moved to a committee, to report back next year. (I think he realized that everyone was getting very tired and cranky and things were not looking that friendly for a contentious subject.)
- Electronic Signatures returned with new language from the committee. This then became a giant clusterfuck that took 30 minutes to resolve and I still don’t know why. Eventually, this too passed. It should be noted that this allows the use of electronic signatures but the means are at the discretion of the WorldCon.
- Meeting was then adjourned in memory of Bobbie DuFault and Peggy Rae Sapienza.
PLEASE NOTE: I am now going to start going through my previous liveblogs and try to correct some name misspellings. Please bear with me.
I also have some thoughts on the Hugos, and maybe I’ll type those up at some point. But this post is already 1K words long, and my liveblog from today was almost 3K. I’m getting pretty worded out, here.
See you in Kansas City next year, space cowboys.