The Crunchyroll Awards voting is underway, and considering the waves it made last year, of course that’s the hot-button topic for the aniblogging sphere…
One particularly contentious point about the awards is the inevitable complaint that “this is going to become a popularity contest”.
My particular view on this issue is that there’s so much anime out there (roughly 40 anime per season, plus a scattering of movies that make it to Western licensors and metric tonnes of manga in both digital and physical formats), people are bound to only see things that interest them. Even with the write-in option this year, when it comes to polls for favourite [so-and-so] people are only limited to judging what they’ve seen. Unless it’s favourite OP, ED or score, which can be found scattered across easily-accessible music services (hopefully legally and) for free without much of a time investment or requirement for focussing, not every person in the world has the ability to watch every nominated show (and/or movie and/or read every volume of the manga in the case of one category) to determine winners for every single category.
Of course, since the nominees are listed on the page right above the poll, these will be the shows (or whatever else) people will think over the most when they submit their votes. When I was trying to vote for Best Score, I only remembered my post for the Spellbook said my vote went to Kado once I’d submitted one for Ancient Magus’ Bride. That’s actually not a shift in my tastes, because I still think Kado’s is superior – it’s recency bias, and there’s really no fix for that. There’s just something about being satisfied with picking a nominee than being shunned for something you liked but others didn’t (even though the Award people won’t actually tell anyone who voted for what).
Then again, people are being less wary of what Crunchyroll are doing this time because they’ve expanded their votes to series available outside their servers. Also, those write-in votes at least mean it’s not completely restricted to the nominees if there’s a passionate enough fanbase that remembers a certain show (or movie or manga). Obviously, with the infamous Yuri!!! on Ice sweep last year the signs of a popularity contest were more prevalent then, but luckily enough it seems like Crunchyroll is learning from their mistakes.
Also, because Ayano mentioned being impatient about the staggered voting – my opinion is that it’s so that people get in and out quickly, and not flood the servers all at once to create an accidental distributed denial of service attack.
So, where do you sit on the idea of the Crunchyroll Awards?
(Addendum from the progress stage: Crunchyroll is taking op-eds for either essay or video formats. However, that’s not the reason I mention this forum thread – I put it here for the discussion on how to improve the Awards.)