Events like the BAT , no doubt , are a great source of inspiration-they actually help you recover from that writer's/blogger's block that you have been going through.Besides, you get to read the most amazingly wide variety of articles/stories/poems on the same prompt.The condition for putting up the post on the same day by everyone and the voting system seem to be just fair. But, is it actually fair? Let's see..
Though I , myself , am new to this BAT thing (have participated just twice!) but much before I joined it, I used to observe the scenario in this contest(Yes, I had all the time in the world to see what everyone had written and what kind of response they were getting!).Coming back to the point, I feel that there are little pools here in this contest (or in any other contest, for that matter). There are some veteran bloggers which remain confined to their own group.There's nothing wrong with it but when they've been blogging for such a long time and are almost adept at it, shouldn't they visit and encourage new bloggers? After all that is the very aim of such contests, right? Fine, not everyone would like to take up the responsibility of encouraging each new blogger but when someone has bothered to write an honest comment on their blog post, should not they be courteous enough to visit them in return and leave their genuine footprints-it hardly takes any time but leaves the other one with a great sense of fulfillment.This was about the judging thing but what irks me most is that while voting too, the system remains the same. They go through the posts of ONLY those whom they have known for quite some time.When they don't read all the posts, how can we expect the voting system to be fair? And it's not about just one or two bloggers, owing to my good observation powers, I know which one belongs to which pool (I wont take any names here!) and believe me, there are a number of them and thus the fairness of the system fails here. I am not writing this because I want to garner some votes for myself (I participate just for improving my writing and that's all).There are way more talented and deserving people who enrich this event but it irks me when some most deserving candidates are left out of the race just because they are new to the event or they don't belong to any particular pool of bloggers.
And what I was most shocked at, was that a participant (again, I wont take any names) had given the link just in time before the entries for the event were to close but when I visited the post, it was BLANK .Obviously, he did post the entry later on by editing the same blank post. Of course it's okay to edit the post to make some changes after the submission, but submitting a completely blank post is the height of unfairness and thus I am forced to write this post.
Another thing that I have noticed is that, the new participants too believe that if they visit the FAMOUS bloggers and vote for them, it'll help them in getting noticed. Again, I have observed this many times ( I just can't help observing behavior of people!) .They visit their blog, say 'hi' , 'hello', 'nice post!' and thus vote for them, even if they haven't read their post properly, probably in the hope that they will visit them someday or they'll be able to attract more blog followers. I just don't understand their strategy or motive behind participating but I, for one, make it a point to visit new bloggers even if I have to miss out on reading some posts by 'the so-called famous bloggers' and quite obviously I usually don't vote for them either because my vote will not make any difference to them(they already have a huge vote bank with them! ) but I try to vote for someone whom I want to encourage to write more and better and not just to make them win, because I know that even if one single vote is in your favor, you're a winner already .
So here's hoping that the system will get fairer with time - Marshal tries his best to keep the integrity of the system intact but ultimately the onus of maintaining the fairness of system falls upon the participants(democracy you see!).