Shorty Award nominations end tonight

By Phil Plait | January 29, 2010 10:40 am

The Shorty Award nomination process ends tonight at midnight Pacific time (08:00 UT Saturday). If you have an existing Twitter account, please help my friend and quack-fighter Rachael Dunlop beat out that alt-med gufru* Joe Mercola. You can vote for her here, and you can get some backstory in this earlier post.

This is just the nomination process, but it simply makes my heart sing to know that someone who represents actual science and a real defender of health gets the most votes. Thanks.

<sup*"Gufru" = "guru" + "goof". This time I checked and found no definition for this word, so I now claim it for my own personal use when referring to someone who claims to be a guru, but is in fact a goofball peddler of nonsense.

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Alt-Med, Antiscience

Comments (8)

  1. Lewknukem

    Gufru on twitter may disagree, though his definition is slightly different. “i am to silly for the philosopher. i am to philosophical for the fool. therefore, i am not guru, but gufru”

  2. Harman Smith

    I think I read something about Mercola getting +1000 votes overnight. I remembered his vote total in health being at 2,700 votes or so. Right now it’s at 1,100. Apparently those ‘votes’ didn’t count. But shouldn’t that disqualify him?

  3. Cain

    I voted for the good Aussie doc and while there threw in a quackery vote for Mercola. I noticed that Jenny McCarthy is only 8 votes away from leading the evil category. If the BA crowd is interested in her getting the recognition she deserves; I’m sure there are more than enough votes here.

  4. john

    Harman- not sure why they took off Mercola’s votes. He’s got like 2 mil people on his list for emails who read his stuff… So I guess 1,500 voted when he put it in the newsletter but then Shorty didn’t count those… weird.
    any idea why?

  5. They performed an audit of all categories and any/all votes that violated the rules (no reason, accounts created after nominations started, private accounts) were removed. That’s how Mercola lost half (literally) of his votes.

    I suspect the reason they only took them away rather than disqualify is due to the uproar there was when Mike Adams was disqualified. Most of the sockpuppet/new accounts were the same ones. I’m sure similar things are happening in other categories too.

    (By the way, vote for me in #nopants!!! )

  6. #john, they prob didn’t meet the requirements of the rules.

    mainly “Voters must be active Twitter users prior to the start of the competition. Votes originating from new Twitter accounts or accounts used mainly for Shorty Awards voting will automatically be disqualified and will not count toward the rankings”

  7. Phil, if you spell it ‘goofru,’ you don’t have to define it for anyone. :)

  8. A large number of Mercola’s votes were invalid- acct created after the contest began, acct used primarily to vote, votes from protected tweet accts and votes which did not specify a reason for nomination.

    Votes were coming in for Mercola at about 20-30/hr. Suddenly, a bit more than 1300 votes appeared for Mercola in a bit under 2 hrs between 0300-0500UTC 27 Jan, then returned to the previous rate of 20-30hr. It’s plausible that those in the spike were placed by a bot (or a few depending upon the Twitter API limit). The claim of emailing 2m ppl may have been a canard to explain the spike. All votes remain available on the Shortys site for anyone to audit. Only the total tally has been adjusted to discount invalid votes.

    I suspect the Shorty Awards may have peaked early when they booted Mike Adams, but they may have had good reason. I found 104 invalid of 150 votes in a sample audit, when he had 530 total votes.

    There WERE some valid votes for Adams, however. I reckon Shortys took that to heart and decided to simply cull Mercola’s bad votes instead of culling him from the running entirely. Mercola’s tally even shed 24 votes after the voting closed, leaving the final result @DrRachie +144.

    Mercola put a great deal of stress and effort into a contest which he repeatedly said was ‘stupid’ and ‘meaningless.’ The ‘doctor’ doth protest too much, methinks.


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