Information About the BWA's



Blog Index
The journal that this archive was targeting has been deleted. Please update your configuration.

Clearing Up Confusing Categories

So based on some of the feedback we've been receiving over the past few days, it would appear a good number of folks are a bit confused about the categories. So I wanted to just take a few minutes to give the breakdown on what we're discovering are the categories people are having the most trouble with and offer some clarification.

1. Best Podcast and Best Music Blog
Podcasts can be about music, but music blogs don't necessarily have to have podcasts. And by podcasts, we mean downloadable files of original audio content. If you just put up an mp3 file of a recording artists with no kind of additional audio commentary or context, then it's just a music file, isn't it?

2. Best Hip-Hop Blog and Best Music Blog
Now this was probably the most overwhelming addition to the Awards from the members of our Google group. The rationale was that there are many other music blogs out there that feature different genres of music, such as jazz, Caribbean and many others. So sorry folks, THESE TWO CATEGORIES ARE NOT THE SAME.

3. Best Gossip Blog and Best Hip-Hop Blog
This distinction was a huge source of contention last year because some popular celebrity gossip blogs got top nominations in the best hip-hop blog category. We tried this year to really make a distinction between the two, because both genres do have overlapping aspects which it seems most voters can't tell the difference between.

4. Best Group Blog and Best Blog Community
By a "group blog", we mean one blog which has several different authors. A blog community can be one blog with an active comment base, or a group of several blogs which have one main page just for that community.

5. Best Celebrity Blog and Best Gossip Blog
This one is easy. Best Gossip Blog is for blogs which...well...gossip about celebrities. Best Celebrity Blog is a blog which is written by a celebrity. You know...people you see on TV, in movies, and listen to on the radio. Best Celebrity Blog is not a blog written by a regular person ABOUT a celebrity.

6. Best Culture Blog and Best Hip-Hop Blog
This is another category in which people thought they should be one in the same. Not the case. There is a lot more to Black culture than hip-hop. Theater, films, arts and crafts, beauty,'s a large category to pick from.

7. Black Blogger Achievement Award
Next year, we may have to rename this, because it seems to be category which the most people nominate blogs from without reading the category description: "This category is for bloggers that have been blogging visibly since January 1, 2003." So this is for people who have been blogging for five years or more. And we have to be able to tell from the blog that you've been blogging for five years or more. That means we need to see archives...a record of your past posts for the past five years or more. Granted, a lot of folks really jumped on the blogging game in the past two years or so, but there are black bloggers out there that have been doing this for a good long while. This award recognizes them -- those Black bloggers that have paved the way for the rest of us.

I hope these explanations clear up any obfuscation which may have surrounded these categories.

Donate to the Black Weblog Awards

We've now set up a donation account through Paypal for those would like to contribute a financial donation to the Black Weblog Awards. Donating to the Black Weblog Awards not only ensures that the Awards continue on for years to come, but they also make the Awards bigger and better! Your donations go towards the following services:

* Front-end website development (web design and graphic design)
* Back-end website development and maintenance (bandwidth costs, server space)
* Future merchandising opportunities
* Prizes, if instituted, for future awards
* Advertising efforts (print and online)

All of those who donate will also have their name listed on the Black Weblog Awards website under our "Sponsors" Section. Just go to to donate. Thank you for supporting your friendly, neighborhood Black Weblog Awards!

Where Are The Black Tech Bloggers?

In case you STILL need a reason as to why the Black Weblog Awards are important, check out this video by Loren Feldman of 1938 Media.

And if it leaves you as offended as it did me, make sure you leave him a comment.

While Feldman makes the careless and base assumption that his stereotyped pantomime equals how technology is used by Black people, the video shows that this pervasive stereotype is still what White people (particularly the large monoculture of White males in the field of Internet development) think of when it comes to Black folks coming into their arenas. That automatic lapse into a gold chain wearing, slang talking pimp is a main reason we have the Awards: to show there's more to Black people than some hackneyed ape act.

Furthermore, it's a dangerous belief to have when you have Black people all over the world trying to get into that arena, but can't because this perception is still looming in the background. The cultural homogeneity is stifling.

The internet...a truly democratized medium indeed.

Anyway, I really needed to get that off my chest. Make sure you head on over to the site, read the rules and categories, and vote appropriately. Thanks again for your support.

Nominating/Voting More Than Once Only Hurts The Blogs

As of this posting, duplicate ballots submitted will not count towards nomination or voting counts for the Black Weblog Awards. I just had to make a somewhat messy example out of a semi-prominent activist/journalist for voting for herself over five times, each time using a different e-mail address and name.

Folks, we want the Black Weblog Awards to be fair, and for everyone out there to have a chance to nominate their favorites and vote for the finalists. So keep in mind that we are taking a zero-tolerance approach to this, so tell your peoples if you have to.

Got questions? You know how to reach us.

This Year's Categories: Too Many or Not Enough?

So here's a slice of the feedback we've received via the Black Weblog Awards website:

"Can I vote again? There are too many categories here for me to just vote once."
"I think that a couple of categories need to be included in the future: Best Fashion Blog and Best Beauty Blog. There are numerous AA blogs in those two categories that should be given a chance to be recognized."
"Why are there all these dam [sic] categories? I dont [sic] think there are this many black blogs in the world."
"How come there's no 'Best Gaming Blog' category? I run a video game site, and I feel left out of the awards yet again this year."
"Way too many damn categories for this year...stop trying to be all things for all blogs and just keep it light."

It's always interesting to hear the feedback on categories because it never seems like a balance can be reached. The number of categories has grown a lot since we began in 2005 (we had 11 categories). 2006 has 21, and I never would've thought we'd reach 30, but we have. I think that growth, in part, really speaks to the growing diverse nature of the blogosphere, because there's a little bit of something for everyone. And it's hard to do something like this without somehow, unfortunately, leaving someone out. Of course, we can't add categories now, because that wouldn't be fair to people who have already voted, so it's something we're going to continually work on for next year's Awards.

On the other hand...I do realize that there are a large number of categories, and folks will only vote for what they know and leave the other fields blank. Voting, great civil right that it is, does inherently involve a level of both self-knowledge and external research in order to vote properly. We do encourage all the people who are not only nominating their favorite blogs, but also soliciting others to vote for them, really read the categories' descriptions and ask if it applies to your blog. Last year, we got raked over the coals because people said the rules and the categories were too much to read, voted without that knowledge in mind, and then people were mad because the popular vote ruled more towards sites which owners of those sites said they didn't fit in.

Personally, I feel like if we pare the category numbers down, we'll be excluding more blogs. However, if we add more categories, we'll may lose more voters.

What do you think?