Thanks for the kudos. To steal an old phrase, any contest that would have me as an entrant is not worth entering.
The contest was a blast, the suspense was great and the prize was beautiful and inspiring for sure. Does it matter who voted and how? Maybe it could have been tidier but what the hey...people had a chance to see the site, read the stuff. Thanks again, Colin to you and those who put up the prize, which is something you didn't really need to do.
And congratulations to Cheryl for her winning story and to everyone else who entered. (And to those who tried, or even thought about it. Thinking can never be a bad thing)
May I submit this ... If someone wrote "I love coffee. It changed my life." and had a gang of their friends submit a vote to win the prize would that have mattered?
Some *thought and heart* went into some of the submissions. Others just *thought* of a way to pull the vote their way regardless of the submission.
Interestingly enough the tougher criticism has come from the owner / moderator of this site. Prizes have been awarded based on the votes cast. Nothing has been said of the quality of the winning submission. That is disappointing enough.
My apologies Colin as I have held up on saying anything in forum to date. Dam straight it matters who voted and how. Colin deserved better and so did coffeecrew. I like this place, the forum, the website and the owner. I personally find that kinking a way to win is disrespectful to what we have here and to Colin himself
Either a brand new (just out of the box)
Baratza Virtuoso grinder (arrived yesterday...)
Sit down now folks...
One of the best coffee brewers on the Planet Earth:
The Technivorm KBT-741 Thermal carafe brewer!
More details to follow:
Bottom line (new rules)
-No MASS Voting from your friends and colleagues at work
because I will know.
-No twittering or facebook usage permitted - If I find out, instant disqualification and coffee shame forever...
AND GET THIS NUGGET OF STUPENDOUS BRILLIANCE:
Story authors will NOT be revealed til the end of voting!
I alone will know who the authors are at all times...
Each story may have an embedded "code", "keyword" or
"serial" number that voters will quote to vote.
This will actually force laggards to actually *gasp*
read the stories.
My devious plan will come to fruition.
Heh-heh. Hee hee. titter. ha-ha BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA HOHOHOHOHOHOH!
I agree with you, to a point. It matters who 'voted' in that it should represent an opinion, not a acquisition strategy. Without getting too off kilter on this, I went through a whole process of reflection when I entered a story...at first it was the enticement of the shiny metal object. Heck, I don't even need a new machine but that didn't stop the lust. Then it was a chance to share. And to write something that had been stirring in the nether regions of my brain for years. Then, after the submission (no not that kind) came the anticipation. (no, not that kind). And then came the realization that other stories were getting 15 times the number of hits as did my story - certainly not random chance.
I think the challenge that Colin faces is that of democracy - how do we seek and receive opinion, regardless how trivial the issue and how do we determine the validity of the information we receive.
If the winner of a contest (coffee story or President of the most powerful nation on earth) is based on the number of people who recognize the name or ascribe a particular set of values (whether a free cool machine named OTTO or 'THE POWER TO BELIEVE IN THE FUTURE' are we able to accept that decision and how it was made? Or do we need to look a bit further into how decisions get made, alternatives to the most popular wins and the value we put on the particular decision. Lots of other ways to spell WINNER.
My comments about how and why people voted are a personal reflection of coming to grips with the fact that a story that I wrote and which people liked (OK family and a few friends for whom I bought beer) didn't compete well with other stories that garnered votes for reasons that might be no better or no worse than those the ones that motivated my family and friends.
What I was trying to say in the post above was that sometimes the process of figuring out what is important (story criteria and a voting process that reflects what you believe in) is as important as what seems like the obvious prize. Maybe Colin has unleashed a real interesting opportunity to re-invent the democratic process in a way that recognizes the current communications strategies, priorities etc.
Maybe Colin should ask for ideas for the 'ideal coffee democratic process' and let the debate begin. I am nominating him for the next round of Nobel prizes for his contribution to democracy.
I like what you wrote. You lost me through most of it. But I like it. You're much more calm and grounded than I am. Which is a good thing. I was doing pretty well with keeping it to myself partly because I understood how the rules were laid out and partly because I submitted a story as well. This isn't a sour grapes issue with me. I was asked to read over the finalists and help pick a winner. I chose two other stories that weren't in the running. I thought they were easy front runners.
All the same it does matter how. This is someone else's house and more respect should be shown by those of us who use it. He deserved a better ending.
Colin is a brave man though, willing to run another contest. It will be tough to come up with something worth consideration. Especially after my tantrum.