On Blog Awards

On Blog Awards August 17, 2011

One of the worst things on the blogosphere is the self-congratulatory tone many bloggers have for themselves and for each other. They start creating awards to hand out to each other. They act like they have done something great if a friend creates an award and gives it to them. They act like they are the height of good judgment when they make an award and then give it out to a friend.

There seems to be more and more “blog” awards being created than there are awards being made and given out by acting guilds. The absurdity of such awards should be self-evident.

For those who receive them, and praise themselves about it, they have earned their own reward. For those who create them, and praise themselves for being so great in creating an award, they have also earned their reward. No one should mistake these awards as holding any objectivity. No one should mistake these awards as being anything but temptations for sin.

When people without authority, without knowledge of theology or history, without common sense, start making declarations of what is “the best Catholic blogs” out there, you better be weary. Ask yourself the question: what is their true motive? What is it they are trying to do? The answer to this should be obvious.

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  • Henry – a simple thank you. Thank you. Oh you have no idea how much I agree with you.

    • You are welcome — it’s something I think which needs to be said from time to time, especially as these “awards” continue to exponentially increase on the blogosphere. I hope the people who need to hear this do!

  • I couldn’t agree more. Thanks Henry.

  • Don’t you think you’re over-reacting a bit? Almost all the bloggers I know of are rather tongue-in-cheek when it comes to these awards. Most of the voters / readers of those blogs also appear to treat the whole thing as a bit of fun. While it’s possible that some bloggers and readers put more store by these awards than they should, given that normally it’s just an Internet poll, I have seen little actual evidence of that.

    Moreover, I think these awards can be helpful to new bloggers and blog-readers too. Winning / being nominated can be encouraging for a new blogger and help spread the word. For newbie blog-readers or those seeking to expand their blog-shelf, it’s a good place to start. After all, you can hardly blame someone who looks at the NY Times Bestseller list to decide what books might be worth reading this summer!

    In the Peace of Christ

    • A big problem is that these awards are often used to silence others, to distract people and marginalize them. Look to who gets the awards and from whom, it is clear, politics is being played and Catholicism ignored.

      • Pinky

        How? That doesn’t make any sense. I like the occasional review of best blogs because it helps introduce me to new ones. I’ve never ditched a blog because it didn’t make someone else’s honor roll.

  • Yes!

  • brian martin

    Well, I created my own Award….based on my observations and my expertise..for my own use, and for the edification of you and your peers.
    I hereby (drumroll and fanfare) present Vox Nova with the
    “Only Blog Visited Daily By Brian Martin (….not that anyone cares) Award.

    In all seriousness….I enjoy this blog and the conversations because the discussions are not allowed to mindless backbiting, slander and ad hominum attacks.
    Thank You all for a great place to come.

    • Brian,

      Well, the best thing is that you like the discussions. Sometimes they get heated, but the desire is to go beyond that. So that really is what is important!

    • Dan

      I enjoy this blog and the conversations because the discussions are not allowed to mindless backbiting, slander and ad hominum attacks.

      What a blithering piece of rubbish. I can safely extract from this post that you clearly aren’t supportive of waterboarding homosexual muslim children in a just war against universal healthcare. Heck, even the Pope is more Catholic than you, and he’s a complete heretic. Can’t your small mind see the inherent contradiction in your pathetic beliefs? What kind of American are you?

  • I don’t see an issue here, at least an issue any more than having a list of “good blogs” on the sidebar. The internet is defined by its interactivity, and this interactivity happens not only between readers and writers but between blogs. Blog awards, though numerous, are a healthy and positive way to have that interaction. Not only does it guide readers towards good blogs it also gives positive reinforcement to the blogger chosen that in fact they are doing good work and ought to continue blogging. Considering how vitrolic the blogosphere can get and how often people leave b/c they find other things to do, this is a good thing.

    Now, if the awards got mean, like “Dumbest Blog” then I could see a problem, but not picking a blog for an award or not linking to them on the side doesn’t marginalize them; instead, it simply says “I don’t recommend this blog, either b/c it’s not good or I’ve never read.”

    Of course, some people care too much about these awards but the idea that the awards are “only temptations to sin” is a little harsh.

  • I am creating a blog award on my blog, specifically to award the truthiness of this post.

    • Thanks, though I am sure you understand if we don’t note it here on VN 🙂

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  • Cathy

    Your “about the contributors” page indicates that one of your writers penned an award winning book. Shame on him.

    • brettsalkeld

      Well, at least according to Henry’s logic, that would depend on who gave it an award.