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As per Seismic Stan’s latest Blog Banter, number 43:

…Applaud Your Peers, Embarrass Your Enemies…

At the turn of the year in meatspace, award season starts to spin up. Across the general media, folk are encouraged to look to their peers and recognise excellence and inspiration from the previous year.

For the past two years I have attempted to do the same for EVE by distributing imaginary Free Boot Awards to an eclectic assortment of community luminaries. This year I thought it might be nice to expand the concept.

For Blog Banter 43 I would like to invite every participant to nominate their peers for whatever awards you think they deserve. Let’s start the year with some EVE-flavoured altruism and celebrate the best and the worst of us, the funniest or the most bizarre, the most heroic of the most tragic of the past year. They could be corpmates, adversaries, bloggers, podcasters, developers, journalists or inanimate objects. Go nuts.

There’s only one rule: no narcissism allowed (so step away from that mirror and resist the urge to nominate yourself).

Other than that, if it’s great, let’s celebrate.

Banter On.

Ah, this.. is going to be interesting.  But considering that yesterday’s blog post was a considerable rant, I think I’ll just stick with positive awards today.

Most Political Blogger –

Well, really there are only three contenders in this race in my mind.  Ripard Teg of Jester’s Trek, Poetic Stanziel of Poetic Discourse, and Mord Fiddle at Fiddler’s Edge.  The difference in political styles is evident from the get-go.  Poetic seems to be sort of a machine-gun of anti-CSM banter, constantly barraging the current CSM for various failings at every turn and even on some of the straight aways too.  Ripard Teg tends to be a bit more strategic in his aims, but his claims aren’t so easily dismissed by just throwing more words back at him, so he is more of a strategic artillery strike.  Mord Fiddle, on the other hand, seems to have his sights aimed squarely on the Mittani, much like a Sniper looking for that one, single, critical shot that might change everything.

With all three of these guys I have, at times, agreed with.  Ripard and myself are of the same mind when it comes to Supercapital ship proliferation, something that continues not to get traction with CCP.  I’ve agreed with Poetic about some of the members of the CSM not pulling their weight.  And few can argue with the logic that Mord puts forth whenever he takes on a subject of his interest.  Still, I haven’t always been of the same mind as them.  Poetic’s anti-CSM rants often times do leave some realities in the dust.  Ripard Teg, in my opinion, tends to fault the CSM too much in regards to communicating back to the player base.  And Mord Fiddle’s laser-like focus against the Mittani seems to drop into obsession/tin-foil hattery every once in a while.

But who though, is the most political?

I think the winner of this has to be Poetic Stanziel of Poetic Discourse.  While Ripard Teg and Mord Fiddle certainly fire enough savoes against their respective targets, Poetic tends to be like that pitbull that never lets go.  Sometimes, its a good thing… other times it impedes progress.  But either way, he is consistantly active in his determination, no matter what the outcome.

The Most Helpful Award –

There have been several things in game and out of game that caused me to think of this award.  The first, and most predominant event, was the loss of Vile Rat in Libya to what appear to have been some opportunistic terrorists.  The event shook the foundations of our community and the center point of this response was here on The Mittani.  Another major event inside the game was the loss of the iconic frills that were on the Vagabond.  Rixx Javix over at Eveoganda led the charge to get the frills replaced and with the combined effort of the community, not only got the frills replaced, but got new, very beautiful models for both the Vagabond and the Stabber.  Then you must consider people like Seismic Stan over at Freebooted, whose contributions, help keep our Eve Community vibrant, giving us topics to discuss and focus on. 

To be honest, this wasn’t as hard as I thought just because there was simply one single event last year that blew everything out of the water.  So, this award has to go to The Mittani.  Myself and many others sought to bring up our feelings/thoughts at the loss of Sean Smith/Vile Rat through our blogs as well as give others the opportunities to help his family.  Those words even drowned out the loss of the US Ambassador and two other soldiers who also died in that attack.  The Mittani did a good job at being both discreet and yet focused with helping Sean’s family during this very difficult time.  A time when everyone in Eve lost a brother.

Best News Website –

In the history of Eve Online, there has been several websites that have come up and tried to be a “news” organization for the Eve Online populace.  This has included Eve Tribune, Eve Stratics, Eve News 24, Themittani, and some others.  Some of them have fallen to the wayside and others have diversified because there is only so much news from an online game that can be had.  As of right now, I think only three can really be considered:  Eve News 24, The Mittani, and Eve Online Information Portal.

All of these selections have some serious emotions around them.  Eve Online Information Portal has a distinct advantage since that is where everyone else has to rely for actual in-game updates, including Eve News 24 and The Mittani.  Both Eve News 24 and The Mittani sites have been assailed with condemnations of bias and intentional inaccuracies.  Whatever the choice I make, there are certainly going to be sharp criticisms discussing why I got that wrong, some of which may actually be right.

I think this time however, I am going to cheat and call it a draw between Eve News 24 and The Mittani.  Here’s why:  While Eve News 24 tends to be a little loose with its fact checking, it does do a better job at sticking strictly with Eve Online and also bringing up information about smaller conflicts that happen.  On the flipside The Mittani tends to have very good deep thought articles on Eve Online mechanics and politics, but has strayed away from being Eve Online exclusive.  So, either they both get the award or neither does.  Your choice.

Most Relatable Award –

Yep, the one you read just because you like it.  It may not be special, it may not be provactive, and it may not always be current.  Sorry, but that goes back to Kirith Kodachi of The Inner Sanctum of the Ninveah.  A responsible family guy with three kids (I know a bit about that), a caring wife who somewhat understands his obsession, and whose writing and conversation makes a pretty easy-to-read blog and podcast.  He’s the regular joe that you could have a coffee or beer with and not feel bad about it, or feel like your skills were being eviscerated for the world to see.

Best Podcast Award –

Again, for me there was no contest.  I try to listen to a lot of them, but overall I just like Voices from the Void the most.  The host is just someone who I can listen to all day, and she does a good job keeping everything relevant and interesting.  It looks like Dani is taking a short break right now, but I’m sure she’ll come back with whole slew of interesting interviews, which she does quite well.

As far as any additional awards, I think I’ll just leave that for the rest of the blog pack: