Post-mortem

4 years ago, a group of anime bloggers set up the Anime Blog Awards. They were a sort of anime blog oscars, where bloggers submit blogs for various categories and vote for the best. There was some initial interest in the nomination stage, but the actual award stage came under heavy criticism for being just an excuse for the big boys to pat each other on the back, along with many people barely even noticing that the final results had been posted. There were plans to run the awards again next year, but that never came to pass. Two years later, a discussion on twitter about the pros and cons of the ABAs led to the creation of the Aniblog Tourney. The idea was to make something like the ABAs except more fun and engaging.

While there were more positives than negatives to come out of the first tourney, it was clear it had much room for improvement. A lot of the complaints, such as people being given the opportunity to drop out with minimal fuss if they didn’t like the idea of participating, were solved by simply having a longer build up and preparation. One potential issue I saw coming from this was that a big name blog would pull out and fans of that blog would declare the entire tourney null and void because that blog wasn’t featured. Sure enough, Random Curiosity pulled out, but there ended up being absolutely no complaints about this whatsoever. People just accepted that RC didn’t want to take part.

Other complaints were handled less well. People complained that the first tourney totally missed a bunch of blogs and that ignoring manga/light novel blogs was illogical. So we spread our search and upgraded the tourney from 96 to 160 blogs. There were also complaints that the tourney took too long, so we shortened the amount of time each match stayed open and had more matches per day. In retrospect, it should have been pretty clear these two would never work together. More match ups a day meant people were less likely to check out the blogs in the other matches, and fatigue set in a hell of a lot quicker. Plus the tourney ended up lasting longer anyway because of the break we took to get the new polling system in. If we were to run a tourney again, it’s pretty clear that an opt-in policy rather than an opt-out policy would be far better. A lot of bloggers would allow laziness and indifference to take over and not enter, but the evidence suggests that it wouldn’t be a bad thing at all if this was the case.

I changed the method I dealt with drama and complaints this time around. Last time I took a much more hands-on approach, coming into comments section on the tourney and other blogs to address complaints whenever they arose. What I found was that when someone has decided they don’t like the tourney, no amount of discussion will change their mind and will usually just make them angrier and escalate the situation, compounded by the fact the same people who complained in the past would chime in every time this happened. This time I just decided to ignore the people who clearly wouldn’t be converted to believers. Result: Exactly the same amount of drama. Still the same ratio of complaints about the tourney itself to those competing. Still accusations of the tourney being rigged. Still the same format of there being drama choke points that drive lots of hits but essentially no extra participation on parts of those who love watching the drama.

There are the issues that are inherent to the tourney format. Two ones that showed up repeatedly were ‘circle-jerk’ and ‘popularity contest’. This should have been pretty obvious from the start, since the tourney did literally come from the thought process “who would win in a popularity contest between 2-D Teleidoscope and Umnei Kaihen”. This is why it was a bit silly when people would declare it to be a popularity context as though they were revealing something dramatic that the tourney organisers didn’t realise themselves. Of course nobody except the most delusional thought the tourney was about finding the ‘best’ anime blog. If that was the case, I’d have just set the final as Mecha Guignol losing narrowly to Ogiue Maniax. Might not have gotten as much viewers, but at least it would have been correct.

Then there were public polling systems, which I realised towards the end of this tourney that a system that nobody has any issues with and runs completely smoothly is a holy grail that can never be reached. We got the polls to open and close when we want, without having to be on hand at the exact hour to ensure this happened, but there were still issues. We got a new polling system in that you could tell when people were proxy voting, but proxy votes still got through. Trying to block proxy votes led to honest voters being blocked. Hiding the vote counts so it would be easier to delete the fake votes resulted in complaints that it killed the excitement. Being able to see all the IPs still meant that you had to go down through them to pick out any irregularities, an excruciatingly boring task. Then in the very final match, voting from multiple devices suddenly became a big issue. This particularly baffled me, as nobody had complained about this before despite the fact people had been fairly open about doing this across the past 2 tourneys. Even if we were to clamp down on it (although expecting us to do it in the very final match was completely absurd), it’s impossible to track even with staff studiously studying every vote coming in.

The other issue is the competitive nature of the tourney has too many negative effects. The stress involved in having multiple people judge your blog isn’t particularly pleasant for most people. It also brings out the worst in some of the competitors with smack talk, while others get all easily offended by friendly competition banter. A far bigger issue is it does very little to encourage those to check out the blogs competing. Unless you have a very open mind and are willing to check out all the blogs competing, most people will just vote for the blog they know and ignore the rest, particularly those who read only one blog. If anything, they revel in their ignorance in the rest of the blogosphere, claiming they’re proud to only read that one blog. Vote counts in matches with the super-popular blogs indicated as much, as did some of the shockingly ignorant comments they left. I cry a little inside when someone says “unlike all those other episodic blogs that just recap the episode”.

There’s clearly a lot of value to running the tourney. There’s plenty of anecdotal evidence of people discovering new blogs to read, along with the usual small handful of blogs that experience a big increase in the amount of readers they get. I even saw some of the newer bloggers say that the first aniblog tourney was one of the reasons they started blogging, and they were delighted to finally be able to participate themselves. The issue is readers only get a much out of it as they put in. While it’s excellent at attracting people, it’s frankly rubbish at convincing those to put in the effort to give each blog a chance. As I said earlier, the competitive nature of the tourney doesn’t encourage that.

Basically what I’m trying to lead up to here is I don’t think the tourney should run again in its current form. After the first tourney I was optimistic that most of the issues could be ironed out, but this time it’s just the deadening truth that these problems are inherent to the format. It would have to be drastically changed from what the previous two were like to be worth running again. At the moment I can think of 3 possible routes:

  1. Bring back the Anime Blog Award format, except instead of a focus on congratulating the big boys on a job well done, switch the focus to newer blogs. A very simple yearly format where every blog between 2-14 months old is entered and bloggers vote on the Best New Anime Blog of the Year. A clear focus on promoting newer blogs, rather than the total lack of focus the Aniblog Tourney has, would likely get more traction and goodwill and would be considerably less fuss to run.
  2. Forget any notion of trying to encourage those who barely read anime blogs to use the tourney as a resource. So few did so anyway. Embrace the circle-jerk nature and swap to a self-nomination and a closed-voting system. People submit themselves to be one of the voters. Something like about 64 blogs and 200 voters. For those who want to vote but didn’t know of the tourney’s existence until after submissions had closed, there could be a rolling system where after each round, those who didn’t vote get cut for newer people. It’s a step closer to the ABA format again, but keeps the intrigue of a tournament system while also doing away with ‘popularity contest’ complaints.
  3. One aspect many bloggers praised from the tourney was the feedback they received. If bloggers really consider this to be the most valuable part, then clearly the tourney is a terrible format for getting feedback. Instead you should focus on some sort of site where you submit your blog to a queue of blogs to be critiqued. Each week a new blog would be featured and people would leave comments with their feedback and criticisms. The nature of this format means people will be fully aware and prepared for incredibly negative comments about their site.

I’m afraid I can’t think of a format that would encourage non-blog or single-blog readers to check out new blogs. The ABAs seem like a good idea because they would highlight the best of the best for people to check out, but that didn’t really happen when it ran originally. These methods also miss some of the tourney’s selling points, such as its vast scope and ability to attract a fairly big audience. But yeah, in its current state, it’s too much effort for not enough reward with too many drawbacks.

Final point of order is that I’m not going to be running any of these things myself. It takes way too much time and effort for an ultimately thankless task. So much stress involved in making sure everything runs smoothly and too many people ready to jump at every mistake to declare the entire tourney delegitimized (this sort of comment often confused me too, since I have no idea what the concept of a ‘legitimate’ tourney was meant to look like). I got fucking sick of the whole thing, and it’s not like I’m paid to put up with this. Some of the staff has expressed interest in helping set up whatever the next version of the tourney is, but not in running it themselves. I’m sure some bright spark will come along with too much time on their hands and run some grand aniblog event in two years time, as I and some other naive bloggers did two years ago. If you’re that person, you can e-mail me and I’ll send you my big excel spreadsheet of blogs if you think it will be useful. Heck, maybe you think the aniblog tourney is great and want to run it again yourself. In which case, you are an insane bastard and I want nothing to do with you. But good luck anyway.

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46 thoughts on “Post-mortem

  1. If critique and exposure is your goal, an internet voting tournament is not the best of formats. If you can pool together the more popular blogs from each sector (manga, fansubs, anime, etc) and rotate them into a queue of critiquing newer blogs (<12 months old), I'd believe that is more constructive than a tournament itself. There would be critique from different perspectives, and also a discussion afterwards in the comments if people think otherwise. Also, having working directory of relevant blogs also work as well.

    Competition itself is not a good medium to be used for exposure and critique, but is a good way to advertise and prove who's the best. To this extent, people react to immediate incentives to push for what they consider is the best, rather than open their mind to look for what is the best. (This apparently has been shown to be true by the large blog readership blocs.) Only when the idea of competition is put aside, and critiquing is put at the forefront of discussion, there can be rational discussion regarding the merits of a site. I'm curious if you guys have even thought of something along the lines of this before?

  2. Well let’s get started.
    1.

    More match ups a day meant people were less likely to check out the blogs in the other matches,

    This is pretty much a fabrication. What’s the difference between checking out 8 blogs versus 16? Granted doing that every day for months will cause fatigue but that’s too broad of an assumption and doesn’t get at the root cause of fatigue.

    I think there’s some flexibility to allow bigger and longer matches in order to accommodate more sites. That’s how Saimoe works, anyway.

    2.

    Then there were public polling systems, which I realised towards the end of this tourney that a system that nobody has any issues with and runs completely smoothly is a holy grail that can never be reached.

    It works when it’s not run by assholes or participated in such a way. Of course some degree of spoofing exists–even those phone-in, American Idol nonsense has it. The best system allows for it only to the degree as a compromise to maintain the experience of the average voters. To be honest when I have to phone in that I’m voting from work and not proxying my vote, I stopped voting. It’s not fun anymore (unless you go to the extremes and do it the Saimoe way as it becomes a reward in of itself) Usually when things are not so contentious, it works out pretty well, or when the pool is big enough.

    3.

    This is why it was a bit silly

    . I think it’s silly to even address this. Own up to it already? Why is this an issue? It’s like calling a [noun] a [noun]? Don’t double-talk out of this, “LOL Popularity Contest LOL.”

    4.

    It also brings out the worst in some of the competitors with smack talk, while others get all easily offended by friendly competition banter.

    This is typically when things gets fun. I think people should grow thicker skin in general though.

    5.

    There’s clearly a lot of value to running the tourney.

    This is my problem with you/this tournament. Yes, there is value in this; but the way the tournament is organized seems to be an effort to entirely minimize this value.

    Which may be okay if we see the tournament as an exercise to have fun and that’s the carrot in front of the Cart Drivers, while the Real Value of the Touranment is a side benefit that gets tossed around whichever way the carrot turns. Of course, it is your ball, take it or play, that’s ultimately something we have to live with. But it kind of tickles me seeing this…inefficiency.

    6.

    One aspect many bloggers praised from the tourney was the feedback they received. If bloggers really consider this to be the most valuable part, then clearly the tourney is a terrible format for getting feedback. Instead you should focus on some sort of site where you submit your blog to a queue of blogs to be critiqued. Each week a new blog would be featured and people would leave comments with their feedback and criticisms. The nature of this format means people will be fully aware and prepared for incredibly negative comments about their site.

    This is kind of the blunt, not seeing-forest-for-the-trees kind of thought that we all could live without and could have made the tourney better. You know what? Critiques are a great idea. But You can do better than that, because the competitive context is what gives rise the natural mode of discussion about designs, about what they liked and who has it better, etc. I mean it is a major motivation of why people are doing it at all.

  3. And here I had hope to compete in the next AniBlog Tourney and make a name for myself (like all those other yet still nameless blogs did this time). Scamp, I’m no longer playing favorites with you!

    Anyway, for what it’s worth, we got to know that anime bloggers are some truly bitchy hypocrites. Let’s just be glad that we don’t get to see each other every day since that would get really really ugly.
    Blogging is like seeking for attention anyway. I’m not saying that’s a bad thing but expecting fair play from everyone is kinda… gullible, shall we say? Sure, it’s their fault for cheating and not yours but the whole premise of this thing is just a mess. Seriously, this outcome was to be expected.
    Catching a glimpse every now and then from the sidelines was pretty hilarious though.

    Anyway, someone please come up with a good idea for the next big thing so I don’t have to.

  4. Here is a big thank you for doing this thankless job.

    Just some thoughts. In my two runs in this tourney, both times my blog came out just a little better. I have gained a few new readers, and some even comments. For a small time blogger like me, each new reader is a big deal, even if it’s just one. It has also driven me to write a few more posts at a time I felt lazy, uninspired, and way too busy. Both are invaluable things. And all I had to do was… Nothing. (Except a few campaign posts and tweets.)

    That some would think the tourney is de-legitimized, unfair, or pointless is unfortunate. Sure, there are some procedural kinks that needed to be worked out. But really, for the blogs, I’d imagine the net result is positive. And unless you really made a fool of yourself, or have an excess need for an ego-boost, participants could only gain from a tourney like this.

    So thanks again!

  5. You could tell interest was waning by comparing the typical vote counts during the rounds of this iteration versus the last. There were way too many blogs to look at in a short time span.

    Open internet polling is just asking for trouble if you desire any sort of legitimate, repeatable outcome. I would’ve liked to see a voter registration or CAPTCHA system implemented. People will always find ways to cheat, but registration takes a lot more effort and requires that people actually care to vote.

    • I don’t know if it is fatigue or by the time the tourney winds down, only blogs that game remains and they have relatively low readership?

      I can speak personally that the tourney was over when no more new blogs were added. Most people just didn’t care that much i guess.

      It is exactly the same with saimoe when the characters you rooted for all lost, at least at a glance.

  6. A few months ago…

    Scamp: Are you going to participate in the tourney this year?
    Baka-Raptor: Is it the same format as last time?
    Scamp: Was there something wrong with the format last time?

  7. Ultimately, you have to ask yourself what was the ultimate purpose of the tourney? It had muddled, clashing goals from the outset. “Increase smaller blog exposure”, “Improve quality by peer critique”, “Who would win 2DT or Unmei Kaihen”, “include more animanga Japan-culture fan sites”; it can’t be everything to everybody AND be efficient AND be structured in a hyper-competitive knockout tournament structure.

    If there is a next time, whoever does this needs one precise goal and build a format that best realizes that one goal.

  8. I’d just keep this short for now.

    But first, the tourney needs a purpose that reaches out to everyone. It is rather vague right now. Find new blogs? I did that, for sure, but this all comes across as a regular tourney (which, well, I like (competitions <3)).

    In addition to this, show us some interest and motivation, tourney holders! It comes off as very bland when you don't respond to drama and questions that arise every now and then. Also, do we even know which persons are holding this tourney? Things like these would, at least in my eyes, improve the lack of information, but also the mood. Why not add each blog's picture in the match, or something? Make it more alive!

    We all know this is a circlejerk. So, why not spread the word to other sites? I doubt big news sites would inform about it, but perhaps forums? Introduce blogs to people who haven't even heard of them.

  9. I think my biggest issue is… did you even enjoy making this tourney? You seem more bothered than proud over it. And that isn’t how it should be.

      • Then could this be more of a staff issue? I mean for four people to work on it is admirable (as far as I know it’s just you, Scamp, Renn, and RP right?), but maybe there should be a bit more staff to handle things?

          • Your “butthurt” to put it into terms you understand, is getting boring. Just get over the loss.

            For someone who purportedly cares not for anything nor anyone, you sure can get vested in a random cartoon fan-writing contest. Add to you last post being nothing but a rant of epic proportions which only served to break down the facade of “intelligence” you’d built up and show your true childish colours, I think everyone has had their fill of obvious troll is butthurt WUM.

            Seriously, in the same way you don’t care what the rest of the sphere thinks, no one in the sphere cares what you think. I don’t particularly like METANORN and in fact I enjoyed a lot of what you wrote, but the last few days and comments have just been sad. That’s the only way to describe it- sad.

            But wait I forget since you’re obviously the infallible dark sage, you couldn’t possibly be sad, butthurt, vindictive or childish. It must just be everyone else. Though, I think those are just the textbook signs of butthurt and loss complex.

          • I don’t think it matters; or rather, the two are intrinsic. If you set things up right, it doesn’t matter how good people are at administering this contest. This is not some kind of rocket science we’re talking about; There are plenty of other site/tournament/games like this all over the place and it was a matter of inexperience that probably made this more complicated and difficult than it needed to be.

            Overall I think the handful of people did a good job, and while there were a lot of different problems everything was handled sufficiently well, and even a little professional. At least you can see that it wasn’t their inability to do basic tasks that created the problems.

  10. Well, it was fun. I’d participate again next time. If anybody’s interested in making another tourney, I’ll gladly watch you toil and suffer thanklessly while I don’t help with anything at all

  11. You were practically running SaiMoe for anime blogs, of course it failed.

    On the other hand, your initial objective to increase exposure of other blogs was partially achieved, but it won’t last in the long run. If a blog is compelling enough, people will eventually discover and read it even without this tournament to point them to it.

    Or they stubbornly last long enough to be ‘known’. :)

  12. I really like the idea of doing a “best of new blogs” type of tourney. At least until I realize that would mean I can’t be a participant.

    On the subject of voting with multiple devices… I don’t know about the other people who complained, but I didn’t see any talk about anyone doing it until the Metanorn vs Star Crossed match.

    Anyway, as a small, pretty much unknown blog, the tourney did its job perfectly for me. Now there’s more than one blogger who actually reads my blog, and more than three who know it exists. I guess you won’t be able to look back on this positively since the thing was filled to the brim with drama, but just know that someone out there appreciates it and benefitted from it a ton.

  13. Allow me to solve all of the problems:

    I think the only real problems were the length (a tad long, field too big) and the whole “voting manipulation” thing, which I think was completely solved with the new voting style brought in toward the end.

    What about this?

    How about we have qualifiers, where you list all of the blogs that might participate, and then vote on the top 96 blogs. Voting can be left up for any amount of time, and the results stay hidden until the end. I felt like the first tourney had the perfect length, and qualifiers brings kind of a world cup feel to the whole thing. Also, people can’t complain about who was let in or left out etc. Not only that, but it also allows for all blogs to be viewed. You could even break this up into 4 sections or so if you want.

    If you think about it, every professional tournament has qualifiers to get rid of basically all of the cons that we had.

    Also, you could set it up so that the first round is group stages, where each blog plays every other blog in its group once, and the winners based on wins/ties/loses/total votes achieved or allowed advance to elimination stages, This would cut the amount of blogs in elimination rounds in half, and make it more competitive.

    Everything I say makes sooo much sense.

    • Also, anyone who wants to talk crap about the tournament can just leave. Fuck em’.

      I thought this was a successful tournament this year, and I liked the format, albeit slightly large. Thanks for the hard work guys!

    • World Cup is great if every team had fans and if every team wanted to win. Not every blog has readership like that and you can see pretty clearly only maybe a dozen or so blogs actually really, really wanted to win and had any chance of doing so. Having a qualifier makes no real difference in the long run; since you are doing voting matches you might as well have 3 or 4-way matches to reduce the extra time it takes to run the qualifier?

      If anything qualifiers are only helpful when there are way too many blogs, and even at 200 blogs we are nowhere near that. To put it to perspective Saimoe fielded something like over a thousand characters in 2011, so they really needed a preliminary. Round 1 of saimoe had 288 characters.

      Someone said opt-in instead of opt-out, that is how you want to do this if you want to do it like a “tournament” in the sporting sense. But that would make the aniblog tourney entirely worthless for someone like me, who uses it more like a highlight/aggregator kind of thing.

      • I like the opt in method a lot. The fact is there’s a lot of solutions to make this run better each year. Also, judging characters is easier than judging an entire blog in my opinion. Blogs have a TON more information when compared to a character, especially when you don’t really know the blog. When taking the size of information of a blog into question I feel like a qualifier (take your top so-many-blogs out of this extensive list of blogs) would make a lot of sense. You don’t actually need to have matches, a simple list is good enough in my opinion.

        You don’t know unless you try.

  14. I learned about new blogs as the tourney progressed. I’ll admit that at some point fatigue set in, and I only performed cursory glances at blogs that turned me off at first impression, but they at least got that chance to make me a new reader, and some blogs succeeded.

    As to who comes out as number 1 in the end, well that has to be the least compelling part of the tourney idea. You obviously don’t think people who only read one blog have informed opinions, so why feed that by declaring some blog (any blog) the one blog you would read over all others (the implication of the final winner)?

    Nevertheless, I think it was a worthwhile experience — despite the drama — because I enjoyed exploring the aniblogisphe, and this brought the ‘sphere together in an unusual way for a time.

    • This is a good summary. The problem with this sort of thing is that the winner doesn’t matter once the pool simmers down beyond a certain point (probably right around the QF for this year’s anibrog tourney). Which is why as the tournament continued fewer people became interested. It always play out like this unless you have some mitigating factors (eg., increased circle jerking (ie., a community-based event), some reason why people should care about who comes out in the end).

      • So, request blogs to paypal, say, $5. With 200 blogs that’s perhaps $400 for the winner, $200 and $100 for the rostrum, and $300 in pure profit (or use that to buy Google ads for tourney).

  15. First, allow me to say that I appreciate the efforts made, especially in the later-half of this tournament, to try to reduce the number of vote rigging via proxies, even though it didn’t help me personally. For my own “drama” situation, my experience with my cyber stalker is that he almost always came in via proxy (and usually, never the same one), whether to my blog, website, or forum I administered. That’s how I knew for my two times being in the tournament, the voting would be rigged against me, and since I know folks smarter than I in the IT field, they were able to show that voting was made via certain proxies (whether for or against, they couldn’t say though). Hiding the vote count, while possibly reducing the excitement factor, is something else I thought was a good idea because those attempting to rig votes one way or the other aren’t able to see the results until the end. That’s how voting should be.

    Second, if there were future tournaments, having two wouldn’t be such a bad thing IMO (other than running them). You could have one for new blogs and then when that’s over (or it could be run in parallel), one for the established blogs. A closed voting system would remove the popularity contest aspects, and reduce voter fraud (assuming proxy IPs are banned from being allowed to register and participate, as best as that can be achieved). However, simply missing a vote getting one kicked off isn’t something I’d support as there could be legit reasons for not getting to vote. Missing multiple votes is another story.

    Still, I do wish to express my thanks for the work done with the tournament, and for my inclusion, even though it ended up causing my stalker to trouble you guys to get at me.

  16. Hmm, I have to say that the core of the tournament seem to have gotten lost along the way if it was meant to promote and provide feedback for blogs. I certainly like the idea of providing awards to relatively unknown blogs, but it would require the time needed to reach a format with minimal drama (a rather gargantuan task, I know). The critiquing idea is also a good idea, and it would bring along promotion as a side effect, but it probably needs a more flowing format. Feedback isn’t so strong if it’s provided in such long time periods. Overall, an overhaul would certainly be the best outcome for the tournament.

  17. I think its rather premature to devalue the entire idea of the Aniblog Tourney.

    I can understand your frustration, but honestly, things like this happen quite often. In any kind of voting/tournament, people will always try to cheat, win by any means necessary and generally make it more about their egos than anything.

    My blog/website itself kind of lost to what clearly seemed to be vote rigging and not only that, but we were even hacked on the very last day of our voting. I honestly paid it no mind, and lost in the first round. Did it suck? Yeah. But honestly, the Aniblog tourney was not a matter of life or death for me, and I really did just want to see how much people cared or appreciated my site and how many votes I’d land.

    If only by the very idea that blogs can view, for themselves, how many people actually care about them enough to go and vote somewhere, the aniblog tourney becomes worth it.

    Honestly speaking, I think a lot of it why this tourney was so rough had to do with the fact that only 4 people were taking on such a monumental task, on a free wordpress blog site and at first, using a free poll system. That said, I think this tournament was a huge improvement over last time.

    It got better, a lot more blogs appeared, and honestly, all the goals it set out to achieve, were achieved. I think a lot of the overall feeling and decision on how this tournament turned out is being done on the final few rounds.

    In my mind, I enjoyed the initial rounds a lot more, when people were just starting out, and not taking this as intensely as they did in the final rounds. It was here that it truly became more than just “oh I wonder how far I’ll go” to “I need to win cause you know… we made it this far, we truly need to prove ourselves”.

    And yes… I saw a lot of mud slinging from people that I’ve admired and respected in the blogsphere, and It wasn’t a pretty sight. That is just how some people are though, and in the end the people that got near the end and even won were the ones that focused less on belittling others and more on making a case for themselves (Lost in America and Metanorn).

    And finally, I think a big issue, despite how it probably didn’t really affect voting, was that one of the tourney staff also had ties to the winning blog. I’m not saying that Metanorn cheated, because I know them quite well and honestly believe that they are beyond such things, but I’m not everyone.

    At the end of the day, A tournament’s staff and judges have to be a truly neutral party to truly avoid bias and cheating accusations.

    If this thing ever does go forward, and I sincerely hope it will, then I think it needs to be run by a coalition of big blogs, who volunteer/setup a group that manages this. One of the key things is that one of these blogs play the “host” of the tourney, and really just not participate in it but focus on running it.

    Its the spirit of comradery, good constructive critcism and a fun level of competitive-ness that makes this a very important thing for a very niche type of writing on the internet.

    And finally, I’d like to give props to Scamp and all the rest who worked on doing this. It wasn’t easy, but I totally think it was worth it in the end. Kudos to a job well done!

    • I’m seriously late on the uptake for this but i’ve been stalking this site and i’ve gotta say that this sounded like a really cool event. Seems like many people enjoyed it overall, and thank you to the people who made it possible :)

      People like me would just look at this site and think of the legacy it left behind (a tourney sounds so damn cool, like epic battles of the Middle Ages or something). It makes me think of Gilgamesh for some weird reason..

  18. In the end, there’s not much more worth to come out of simply trying to better what is essentially an online get-together of various blogs, and it should’be worth the time to try to expand it.

    On the other note, the tournament was very well-excuted and although there is somewhat a bitter taste still left in my mouth, the blogs that made it through didn’t disappoint and METANORN did a fine job as a winning team. Kudos to them.

    Kudos to the execution of the entire tournament by everyone: participants, ragers, popcorn eaters, and especially the admins. Props to Scamp, Mef, and the rest of the crew.

    I’m completely up for the qualifiers, and a little more carefully done seeding? :P

    inb4 aniblog world cup 2014

  19. Thanks to the organizers for all your work! It was a frustrating process for many (isn’t that natural for a competition, especially a tournament?), but I thought y’all did a terrific job.

  20. If this thing’s goal is to help new blogs get more readership, it did that for me. While I was knocked out early on in this tourney, I’m happy to be a part of this even for a short time.

    Kudos to Scamp, Mef and the rest of the team for a job well done!

  21. I swear everything will be so much better if this was formatted ala JSaimoe. Embrace the faults of your tournament and just have fun.

  22. Here is how to fix this: ban anime blogging.

    In the beginning of the 21st century, a blogging war breaks out over anime blogging drama. The internet is pretty much destroyed so anime fans stops reading anime blogs, settling on other hobbies such as showering, work, and getting a girlfriend.

    Blogs and Twitter become heavily regulated and eventually banned on the internet due to their power to move people, but a brave team blog writes on guerrilla posts on Anime Nano in the name of a famous act from earlier times that sang to anime blogging’s bitter end, metAKB48. Famous throughout the galaxy, the group’s name is metAKB0048.

    This story centers around a group of girls from various circles, some where aniblog circlejerking is banned and some, where it is not, striving to become great bloggers and join metAKB0048.
    Therefore, they participate in the entrance exam and eventually become undergraduates, aiming to someday be enslaved to Kyokai and succeed the current members of the group.

  23. If you want a circle jerk you could do what that embarrassment of a music mag RS did with their ‘top 100 guitarists of all time.’ Which is basically have the peers vote and then write-up their own thoughts on why so-and-so is this-and-that.

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