Friday, January 19, 2007

Third Annual Blog Award Nominations Closed

Nominations are closed so we have the final list of nominees for the Third Annual UU Blog Awards. Congratulations to all who have been nominated, and thanks to those who participated. In particular a personal thanks for those who had the time and inclination to make things easier for me to compile the results. It helped. If you don't see a nomination you submitted let me know.

First I would like to run through some of the comments I received:
I'm confused, but I hope you understand what I am nominating. It was an important sermon.
I got confused on some of these as well. I hope people take a look at the above list and help me to figure out what some of these nominations reference. Hopefully with some more eyes looking it over we will figure it out.
It would be nice to have the option to choose more than one in the drop down menus - nominations need to be a broader net than voting for one site in each category, and it's a pain to submit this form more than once.
I feel your pain. I actually set it up that way last year, but people seemed confused (maybe this years didn't help) and wrote in nominations more often than not. The process is evolving, it's my second shot at it, and next year I think I will switch back to the multi selects. Thanks for the constructive criticism and dealing with the pain!
Maybe next year there could be a social justice category of some sort? Meanwhile, I nominate you ( for the best aggregator or blog network award.
That does sound like a good category. I will note it for next year. I appreciate the comment on UUpdates, and constructive criticism for that is welcome as well. Also, many thanks to those who have helped keep UUpdates up to date by letting me know about new blogs or sites of interest. Without the people letting me know about all the great new resources they may not have been added. And of course thanks for the great content. It's aggregation, it would be nothing without the content it's aggregating.
Gosh, this seems like a lot of work! Thank you for doing this!
Your welcome, I learn a lot from doing this and I think it means a lot to some folks. So that makes it worthwhile to me. Also, there is some manual process involved and it is entirely possible something got missed between the raw data and the formatted results I posted. If something is missing let me know.
Do the blogs with the most number of nominations (like the top five) make it to the voting round, or do all blogs with nominations move on? It seems like that could get crowded if all blogs that are nominated move on.... Just a thought.
It's a great thought! I agree that voting might be difficult with to many nominees on the ballot. For some categories it might be pretty easy to trim down to five, for others the question would be what to do when we didn't get multiple nominations, but rather a bunch of single nominations. So, please leave your thoughts and comments! What do we do here folks? Keep only the top five, more for ties? Not many single posts got multiple nominations.

I may not respond right away, I have a little trip this weekend. Please keep the conversation rolling. What to do with the nominees? Can you figure out the posts? Perhaps a link to the comments?


ms. kitty said...

I may have missed something, but I'm wondering what the little red ??? mean by some posts. It probably means that there's uncertainty about something, but what?

There's one by a nomination for Linguist Friend's comments at "Miss Kitty's", and the confusion there may be that Linguist Friend comments on "Ms. Kitty's Saloon and Road Show."

What do other such ??? mean?

UUpdater said...

The question marks are ones I had questions on. For example could someone find a link to the comments? Or one set? Can we find something for people to reference?

For others it was a question of "is this appropriate for this category".

Two of the nominations are for bloggers who have posts regarding "why i am not a UU", call me crazy but perhaps the UU blog awards should be aimed towards UUs. Not that what they have to say isn;t of interest, but perhaps not to be recognized in this fashion.

Another was a blog in a new category, and the blog is 3 years old. Doesn't seem new.

I wanted to get the full list out for people to ponder. I will hopefully get some more time (I am on a short work break now) to post a more detailed list of what I think should carry through to the voting. In the mean time especially for any nomination without a link any help tracking down a reference would be appreciate. I do think that it would be appropriate to have some sort reference since we are probaly not all familiar with the content.

LaReinaCobre said...

I probably ought to have asked this question earlier - but what does it mean to say a blog is "UU-themed" or "non-UU-themed.

I noticed I was nominated in a non-UU themed category, but when I compared it to others in the category and more in the UU-themed category, I'm not clear on what the difference is.

LaReinaCobre said...

p.s. Isn't everyone on the list supposed to be UU?

UUpdater said...

LaReinaCobre - I'm not actually certain either. Some of the categories were defined during the first annual process and then have simply carried over. I am not sure a hard and fast rule for what constitutes UU themed or not exists.

The non UU entries were "write ins" and I included them because someone took the time to mention them. Howevermy inclination follows your assumption as well, that those nominations not carry through to voting.

Chalicechick said...

In response to some of the question marks, and I'll try to mostly limit my commentary to categories I'm not competing in:

I don't know what to think about Sean Anthony's post. He was not a UU when he wrote it, and more than fifty percent of the post is quoted material.

At the same time, Lo Fi Tribe was a UU blog this year, and had he been nominated for a "best of class" in something I wouldn't object, though I wouldn't vote for him either as there are other bloggers whom I think are better.

By the same logic, I'd say Boy in the Bands should be allowed to compete at least this year. (Indeed, I nominated him for something myself.) Though Scott remains a Universalist, whether he is "UU" enough to compete now that he's joined the UCC is a question we might best put to the man himself at some point.

Librarian in Tie Dye seems to actually exist here:
and is a UU blog.

Linguist Friend and I have conferred and we'd like to withdraw the nominations for: "If you've just joined a new faith, nobody gives a damn what you think of your old one," "Steinmetz and His Minister" and "Thoughts one has looking through a book of Renoir paintings in the waiting room of a hospice as a close friend gets her morphine drip changed," leaving "In My Father's Synagoge" as the sole entrant in that category from the Chaliceblog.

Also, I am flattered to be up for "Best Commenter" on my own blog, but I'm going to pull out of that race, too.

And finally, the url for UUs vs. Trekkies:Who's a religion? is:


ms. kitty said...

And how can we get that nifty "UU Blogger" logo you sport at the bottom of your page?

Jess said...

ms. kitty - the "uu blogger" icon is on the UUA's web page - I have one, too. You can just drag and drop it on your desktop from any site that sports it and then insert it into your own blog site code.

The "Best Commenter" category is hard, and I'm almost sorry I suggested it (even though I'm nominated). I would say that if a link can be found for a nominee to a conversation in which they took a major part, then they should carry through to voting. The hard part is that comments are hard to search for on most blogs, particularly those hosted by blogger or with haloscan commenting. I have vague memories of good exchanges on PeaceBang, for instance, but couldn't find them for the life of me when it came time to nominate folks.

I think CC's right on the money with Lo-Fi and BitB.

Group blog - this is why I don't think we should use this category next year.

Maybe for next year we should come up with an eligibility process - announce ahead of time that only blogs aggregated by UUpdates are eligible, and that anyone who wants to join in can get their blog listed in the usual way.

Stephanie said...

I'd prefer if we didn't trim to a top five. I know that when I nominated folks, if someone was already nominated, I didn't nominate that person again.

Shawn Anthony said...

LOL. I fired up my Mint stats and saw strange referrals coming from the uber prestigious UU Awards page. Low and behold I was nominated! I have no idea who did this (can you check by whois John?), but I have the least desire to participate in UU things. Please remove my blog from your zany awards. Give my nomination to CC, she so deserves it!

Anonymous said...

You have to decide what actually constitutes a UU, and whether non-UUs should be allowed to be nominated.

Also, if you allow one non-UU to be nominated then it would be unfair to exclude others.

UUpdater said...

Deciding what constitutes a UU is not something I want to tackle. But I certainly can acknowledge when people self describe as not being UU.

Unfortunately I am away from where I can modify the pages right now on my trip. I can remove the folks who reference themselves as not UU. And I will give details on why I flagged some of the blogs with "???" if anyone else sees something that should be flagged let me know.

Shawn - follow up with me in a little while and I might be able to hunt it down. I don't have access to the necessary info right now.

UUpdater said...

Stephanie - good point. Perhaps something to contenplate for next year, but not a good idea to change the rules part way through the process.

Mystical Seeker said...

Being one of the questionable nominees, I'll add my two cents worth. I discovered that I had been nominated only because I happened to notice that sitemeter started showing people coming into my blog from the nominations page. It came as a big surprise to me. I was very flattered and honored that anyone would consider my blog worthy of any kind of nomination like this, although it is definitely true that, religious liberal that I am, I am not a UU. I would fully understand and would not be insulted if I were disqualified from the the awards on that basis.

(On the other hand, UU churches often do incorporate ideas, theologies, and people of a multiplicity of other faiths into their worship, so it would almost be fitting for UUs to honor non-UU blogs in a UU blog award. :) )

One question that comes to mind here is whether blog awards in this instance should be about honoring bloggers who are UUs, or bloggers who are religious liberals, or both. That isn't a question for me to answer, since I am not a UU and consider myself to be just a guest in this discussion, but maybe it is something to think about when you decide how to handle this.

UUpdater said...

Mystical Seeker - Thanks for your thoughtful comments. The reason I chose to include the "more than likely will be disqualified" entries is simply because whether they qualify or not I do think the nominations are intended to flatter and honor. If someone took the time to nominate I think it's worthwhile to share it.

With that said, It is certainly true UUs draw from many sources of wisdom, fellow bloggers included. And perhaps it makes sense for UU bloggers to acknowledge and honor that wisdom that we draw from in future categories. A perspective of what sources do UUs draw from online.

But I think the current itteration is intended to honor the UU voices online and what UUs are bringing to the web. I certainly hope that UU blogs do find commenters from outside UU. We have a lot to share, and learn.

Chance said...

I nominated the Daily Scribe because it was started by a UU and has had another three UUs on the board since then (including myself). I also nominated to provide some competition to FUUSE.

I also meant to nominated Jeff Wilson (not Sharlet, sorry) for best commenter. He comments most frequently on Philocrites but can be found all over the UU blogosphere in occasional and profound comments.

Chance said...

Just a few of Jeff Wilson's comments.

Colleen said...

Good discussion at this point. Not much to add, except to second a few things...

- I'd say keep Boy in the Bands as long as he is part of UUpdates and okay with being nominated. LoFi obviously needs to be nixed.
- I'd recommend keeping everyone who was nominated for the final run; maybe next year trim to the top ten or something like that. I like having more than five in the final mix, just b/c I think it gives people a chance to explore other blogs.
- I second Jeff Wilson as best commenter-- perhaps if we want to keep the category next year it should be better described and a single post/comment thread required to nominate someone.

Finally, I second and third the kudos to UUpdater for all his hard work. This is a great contest and good way to get people focused back in the community of bloggers. Best of luck to everyone in the running!

UUpdater said...

A few follow ups from earlier replies.

Information collected on any of my websites are collected for the purpose stated on the form, and is not intended to be shared with any third party. Other information is collected (Ip address, etc.) but this is only captured in case I need to do something based on a an attack or some form unwanted activity on the site. unless there is some compelling reason to share who submitted what information then it will not be shared. If a compelling reason exists to share the info it should be shared privately not in a public forum. I don't have any intention of following up or disclosing any information regarding who submitted what. My previous reply was intended to initiate private contact and didn't make that clear.

CC - thanks for digging up the links for those nominations, and i will mark the other nominations as withdrawn (will not carry threw to voting) but will leave them on the nomination page for future reference.

I plan on doing some cleanup of the list too, sorting etc.

UUpdater said...

Ok, pending other input I have "finalized" the nominations. Anything not marked as Disqualified will carry forward. I have noted on the page the reason for disqualification. One other pending disqualification is "Never Say Never To Your Traveling Self - Stranger Fears". Nothing wrong with the post, except that it is in 2 categories. Maybe it's just me, but I think it should be limited to appearing in just one category. Currently it's in both "Best Review or Cultural Commentary" and "Best Anecdote or Narrative - Single entry". Maybe I am wrong, maybe these categories are not exclusive like UU/Non-UU themed (which is why I disqualified BitB in one category).

Also, I did attempt to find at least some reference for comments. Part of the effort of the Blog Awards is to provide people access to what some consider the best of what UUs have to offer. If I can't offer a link it fails that goal. The links I added may not be the best possible links for commenters. I would prefer to avoid links to Google searches, so if anyone has specific links to offer I can update the page.

I assume "Jeff Wilson aka Tricycle blog" and "Jeff Wilson" are the same person, please correct if wrong.

I agree regarding "Boy in the Bands" and soon I will probably post about the blogs removal (and note Philocrites Kinja site to follow ex-UUs) in the future, but letting it stand this year makes sense.

Jess - Thanks for answering the logo question. The problem with restricting to UUpdates would be the few blogs that do not support RSS. I have seen at least one. And for Group Blog I am content to see what things look like next year before offering an opinion for next year. Maybe Coffee Hour will return.

Colleen - Thanks

Philocrites said...

One thought about the "UU-themed" vs. "non-UU-themed" distinction (since it was my klutzy distinction in the first annual awards):

I meant to highlight the difference between blogs by UUs that were overwhelmingly about something other than Unitarian Universalism, like politics or philosophy or pop culture, but where religion posts would show up only occasionally. (For example, "Debitage," "The Happy Feminist," and perhaps even Will Shetterly's "It's All One Thing.")The UU-themed blogs were more or less obviously focused on religion.

A lot of blogs are probably harder to categorize because the theme of these blogs isn't topical as much as it is personal. I guess I'd say if you could read a blog every day for a month and not come across a discussion of the writer's religion, it's a non-UU-themed blog by a UU.

ck said...

Can we change "language games & ..." in "non-uu themed" to be Arbitrarymarks? Or at least the URL? That blogspot site is defunct, and everything is on my new domain. Thanks!

ms. kitty said...

Thanks for all your hard work on this! You have put in untold hours collecting input, publishing it, and making it useful to anyone who wants to participate. You're a hero, in my book, for causing a stir of interest and helping to get blogging UUs excited and eager to pour out their ideas to the public.

Thanks, thanks, thanks.

UUpdater said...

ck - Thanks for catching that. the UUpdates database still had both blogs in the database and so both were in the drop down menu. I have removed the old blog from the database and updated the nomination page.

ms. kitty - I appreciate the thanks, and seeing the word spread, and seeing interest sparking in conversations makes it worthwhile.

UU Soul said...

All this wonderful stir and interest created by the award process had me wondering if it would make sense to add a "Best UU Blog Carnival Entry" category next year to create more interest in the Carnival. Just a thought.

Not only do I appreciate all your work on the awards but also for providing UUpdates. I think you should get an award for your contributions to the UU Blogosphere!

LaReinaCobre said...

Oh wow, I didn't even realize Stranger Fears was nominated in two (possibly?) conflicting categories. I suppose it could be seen as a social commentary, but tend to think of it as more of an anecdote. So if you want to remove it from one of the categories, social commentary seems most appropriate.

UUpdater said...

LaReinaCobre - I think i might just be getting caught up in my techie mind about the difference between categorization and labeling. Like I said I am not sure the awards for those are necessarily exclusive. if you managed to write an anecdote that is a social commentary, then more power to you. Of course if you wish to withdraw nominations so that you don't split votes amongst your own entries let me know.

In general if any blogger wishes to follow CCs lead on withdrawing nominations just say so.

Anonymous said...

Hey -- how come I was disqualified as best commenter?

Jason said...

In adding to Philocrites comments on UU-themed vs Non-UU-themed, I would say that my blog "The Wild Hunt" does comment on religion every day but that since the focus isn't on UU-ism (and instead about modern Paganism) it should go in the "Non-UU" category (where it currently is).

UUpdater said...

Jason - thanks for adding that important clarification, I think it makes sense.

Adam Byrn "Adamus" Tritt said...


I was looking for a UU Blogger button with the link embeded but I found this instead.

I'd love to find a way to link to other UU Blogs.

Please take a look at mine at I'm a member of the UU in Melbourne, Florida and learned there were morre UU bloggers out there while attending SWIM.

UUpdater said...

Hi Adam - Well, I am planning on adding you to a site that aggregates posts via RSS from UU bloggers (plus some other sites like UUA, UUWorld, etc.)

You might also want to put a comment in Philocrites annotated guide to UU bloggers.

There is also a Kinja aggregator, and a list of UU bloggers on UUWiki, and a few other places. But I would probably link to one of the above 2 sites.

Thanks for leaving a comment, I took a look at the site and look forward to seeing more. glad to see the word spreading.

LaReinaCobre said...

Hi UUpdater,
You can remove my "Stranger Fears" post from the "Best Anecdote" category. I'm fonder of my Choosing to Love post than of the UU holiday post. Thanks!

UUpdater said...

LaReinaCobre - it's been withdrawn.