A Call to Arms! pt. 3
After waking up at 8am this morning only to see that we were disqualified, I admit I was extremely hostile but instead of mass commenting on everything, I took a long walk in a nature preserve near my place. I sat next to a stream for a good hour thinking about everything. I came back at around 11 and after a few minutes to myself, I decided to write this post.
The aniblogtourney is a great idea, and kudos to Scamp who came up with the idea. While it’s fun to interact with each other, the competition makes it even more enjoyable and it exposes writers to each other so that they can help each other grow. I enjoy watching the tournament proceed round after round, and it would be dishonest of me to say a lot of blogs that are in the tournament I have never seen before. In that retrospect, it all becomes an extremely rewarding opportunity to read different bloggers.
However, I am not the one who initiated this and I’m sure others can agree with me. There was a controversy that surrounded the tournament where the thought was essentially:
Isn’t the voting a circle-jerk fest?
This thought, for me, was completely absurd. Assuming anyone had a decent viewership of their blog, they simply could just advertise or announce that their blog was in a tournament and if their viewers really cared, they would at least take ten seconds to vote for something that made them at least that much happier. Why is there a need to keep this tournament in a space of 200 anibloggers? Is not the point of the tournament to expose VIEWERS to other anime blogs and not just US BLOGGERS to keep to ourselves?
I honestly thought we would cap at 250-300 and was still worried that we could lose to Sekijitsu. I never EVER said “Vote for us, Sekijitsu is crap” or “Guys, free handjobs if you vote for CSW”, I asked my viewers “For those of you guys interested in anime, check out both these blogs on the poll, and vote for one of ‘em. I write for CSW.” Only a small fraction of them clicked on the link and the poll didn’t even go up in that minute. Ten minutes later, it started going up – you know why? Because my viewers actually give a thought about site’s contents. Sekijitsu got some of my viewer’s votes and it even got my vote out of goodwill.
243 votes? Call it bad luck, call it whatever you want, but those are 243 different people who I honestly have faith in checked both sites. Granted, they know me personally so they might be a little bit biased, but hey, METANORN is partnered with Sekijitsu (no disrespect to either great teams), but nobody said anything about that.
Vote manipulation before the poll was open? After looking at the information for a while, I found out that the poll was closed three times.
The first time, somebody on Twitter posted the Polldaddy link and there was even an article about it being open early. Seeing that other polls had opened early AND voted, I just said to my team “Hey guys, our poll’s up”. BUT we decided to not publicly spread it on our site, and even out of more goodwill, I voted for Sekijitsu AND gave Sekijitsu’s team the link in their chatbox if they wanted just their team to vote a bit earlier too. When the votes got to 20-5, I didn’t know what to think, so I just let it be. When I heard the poll closed, I assumed I would just wait until official release day.
I did NOT vote in the second opening of that poll and the third opening of that poll was closed at 0-1 Sekijitsu. It might sound noble if I said I was that 1 vote for Sekijitsu but I was asleep when that happened.
I was anticipating our poll going up – even getting antsy about it and checking on Twitter asking people how long it would be before it went up. As soon as it did, I did what I did and surprisingly got 200+ votes. But then the poll closed for “Vote Manipulation”.
“That’s not right, I’m sure they’re just confused”, I thought, “I’m pretty sure any of the admins will contact me for more information”. I put up my information and my Skype on Twitter if anyone needed any questions, but what do I get? People spreading more and more tangents about what happened and Mefloraine just going “Herp derp okay we’ll just close the poll herp derp”. I honestly still hoped that someone would contact me for more information but when I didn’t several long hours later, I just went on Skype and chatted with Fosh (META), Jubbz (CSW), Mushy (O-NEW), and a little bit of Tofu (Sekijitsu). I went to bed thinking something would be sorted out but I woke up this morning disgusted and in shock.
There were a lot of bloggers I had great respect in and even looked up to, but all the respect is just gone now. No names, except the fact that nobody tried to contact me even when I announced I was willing to talk about it. Nothing – except for the admins kick us out of the tournament because I (don’t even THINK about bringing the rest of my crew into this) manipulated the votes. Is it wrong for me to appeal to my viewers? Is it wrong for me to wander off from a community of 200 anime bloggers? Tell me I’m wrong, and I’ll say sorry. People doubt our viewers, but realize we don’t only do anime reviews – we have streams, we have eroge/douj DLs/reviews, podcasts, and the whole nine yards. If any of you guys try to degrade ANY of my crew members, former or current, you have entirely no shame.
My crew honestly didn’t and still doesn’t care about the tournament. I made the effort to because I wanted everyone to interact more and just have a fun time. But clearly, everyone think that I somehow believe that winning the tournament will solve all my problems, and that’s where a lot of people are so short-sighted and limited-minded.
So what now? I at least want my conversation with the admins. If they can’t give me that, I’m going to just stop giving a thought and just voting in the anime blog tournament. I’m not going to have hard feelings for anyone, but I’m still going to participate voting as ONE vote from CSW, since that’s what it seems that this tournament is basically anyways limited to bloggers just voting for bloggers.
All that being said, if anyone has questions, just ask. Stop making up senseless rumors and do not ever EVER insult any of my crew members. I apologize for any drama I caused and I certainly do wish the best to Sekijitsu should this poll decision be final. I have complete faith in my viewers and it would be the same thing as me calling any of your viewers “manipulative” – they’re just viewers who appreciate what we do so leave them out of this.
That being said, on behalf of CSW and myself, here is our official statement:
“We are saddened to see everything come down to this and that people would accuse of manipulating the votes. We have done our best to contact the people responsible for this decision but to no answer. However, as we have no power in the tournament, we would have to accept that we are DQ-ed and out of the tournament after no notice. However, we wish our best of luck to everyone still in the tournament and our opponents Sekijitsu who deserve more than anything to get far in the tournament. Cheers.”