Wednesday 13 January 2010

TotalFilm's Total Misfire Explained

I was planning on just thinking mean nasty things. I wasn't intent on actually doing anything. And then I was faced with the rather onerous task of re-tooling someone else's powerpoint presentation so I fired off an email to Total Film regarding their "Horror Blog Awards".

And they wrote me back! So unexpected this was that I'm almost inclined to apologize inwardly for my unexpressed ire. Almost. My email to Total Film outlined the nature of the problem, that Total Film doesn't seem to understand what a blog is. They responded thusly:

From Dan Goodswen
to TheAvod
date Wed, Jan 13, 2010 at 1:08 PM
subject RE: TotalFilm Horror Blog Awards

Thank you for your feedback.

The 2010 Movie Blog Awards has been a huge success, quadrupling the total number of votes cast last year in the first week alone. We put a great deal of thought into the sites we nominated, and are aware that some people have taken issue with our use of the term 'blog awards' (not least several of the Horror sites we listed, who pointed this out themselves).

The motivation behind the awards is to say thank you to the sites we have used over the past year, who may or may not be professional, but are nonetheless passionate, hard working and very good at what they do. Unfortunately it would be impossible to nominate every blog, or site, and we capped the list at 5. This meant that many of our own favourites couldn't make the list either, but it doesn't mean we are any less grateful to the hard work and enthusiasm those writers provide to online film journalism. Several of our writers are passionate horror fans who have used many of the sites you listed and countless others, and were also disappointed not to see more of the smaller sites nominated.

In considering nominations we looked not just at sites we have used, but sites our readers are most likely to use. Our core readership is central to what we do, and they inform decisions we make on content based on what they are more likely to read. If nothing else, hopefully the sense of disappointment felt in the Horror Blog nominations will drive more of those users to become active on, and through their participation in the site, hopefully in future we will be able to more accurately guage what our readers want to see nominated in the Blog Awards.

The response to the 2010 Movie Blog Awards has been overwhelming, both positive and negative, and of course we will take all these factors into account when considering future awards.
Dan Goodswen
Digital Production Editor

So there you have it. TotalFilm's (possibly form-letter) stance on the issue, with just a little bit of self-inflation. I'll hold off on registering an opinion...


jmcozzoli said...

I won't. Sounds like rewarding the sites that fluff up Total Awards. No explanation as to the misuse of the word "blog" either.

A totally lacking explanation and what I expected from them. They're hopeless.

the jaded viewer said...

Can we see the letter you wrote? I'm curious as to what you said.

Its a mainstream site doing mainstream things.

Its just ignorance...I highly doubt they even know a horror blogosphere exists.

TheAvod said...

Here's that letter:

Dear Sirs,

I am writing regarding your recent web feature "2010 Blog Awards: Best Horror Blog". The competition was only just recently brought to my attention and I felt compelled to inform you of the criticism you have been receiving within the online horror community. Primary among the complaints is your failure to understand the true nature of the blog. Your competitors for horror blog are not actual blogs, save for one, but horror movie websites. This is an important distinction and your inability to recognize a horror blog has, in effect, turned the blogging community against you.

A horror blog is not a media outlet like Bloody Disgusting or Dread Central. A horror blog is not solely dedicated to new releases or horror news, such as UHM.

A horror blog is more. It is an unmitigated outpouring of horror reviews, news, and editorials. And these bloggers are largely unpaid for their work. They blog because they love it, and wish to share that love with the world. I invite you to visit some of the blogs I've listed below [listed in email] so that you may better understand what a horror blog is and can, in the future, use this information to your advantage.

Yours in fear,
The Divemistress

the jaded viewer said...

Well said. You put down everything I was thinking eloquently. I would have added more profanity and probably not gotten a response.

DM said...

lol! So tempting...