Were the Hugo’s rigged?


I saw this interesting response on Facebook to the Hugo Award announcement and it got me thinking. I’m referring to John’s comment “Heavily gamed”. This is the suggestion originally made by Larry Correia and others based on the curiously skewed nature of the Hugo slate in past years.

I doubt the data exists, and if it does I doubt it would be released, but the question could certainly be answered definitively by releasing all of the voting data with the names of the persons voting. If block rigged voting exists it would be immediately obvious from sets of data from past years in the Hugo’s for the 10 years or so in question. I’m assuming for one reason or another the data wouldn’t be released but it would certainly answer and refute the accusation of block voting in the past that all of the current accusers deny. Even if the names were substituted for id numbers and the id numbers matched across names over the years (So we don’t know who #5497 is but any time #5497 votes we can see who they voted for), that would probably still provide interesting information.

I suspect what I ask is impossible, but if people are going to start threatening to vote “no award” and scream about how it was “fixed” and so on, then they have a golden opportunity to show Larry and the others up as wildly mistaken and foolish for engaging in silly conspiracy theories. If of course they are block voting and trying to act as gate-keepers and keep the riffraff out, then the voting data would probably show this as well. I guess it depends if you have something to hide. I realize it will likely be impossible to get the information to settle the question one way or the other so this will have to remain in the realm of idle speculation. Still it would be nice to see the question definitively answered one way or the other, even if the exact names were redacted.

  • If the data actually exists, it would be trivial to anonymize it. Leave people’s names off and give each ballot a unique identifier. The names are irrelevant. The votes on the ballot would clearly show that either block voting was happening or it wasn’t.

    • sciphi

      As long as the same ID was used from year to year for people who voted, I agree, it would show the pattern quite clearly.

      I wonder if they would release it? I suppose we could ask.