Essay Question: Should critics share their awards ballots?

OFCS members ponder the question:

“Should critics share their awards ballots?”

This was prompted by a post at The Scorecard Review in which Broadcast Film Critics Association member Jeff Bayer reveals his Critics’ Choice award ballot, complete with those nominees he voted for.

Answers after the jump.

Pablo Villaça, Cinema em Cena:

Yes, why shouldn’t they? We should be prepared to standy by our votes and defend our picks. Otherwise, it would just seem we were ashamed of our choices. And we’re talking about voting for freaking film awards, people — this is not a revolutionary or controversial election.

Kim Voynar, Movie City News:

I don’t have a problem with critics sharing their awards ballots, unless there’s an organizational rule they agreed to up front to not disclose them. Personally, I’m a big fan of transparency and seeing the “man behind the curtain,” and further, I think it’s pretty fascinating the way Bayer revealed his votes, with brief reasons for why he voted the way he did. I might not agree with many of his choices, but I have insight into why they made them, and that insight, in turn, gives me an opportunity to perhaps reconsider, or to see a particular actor or film in a way I hadn’t thought of before. Pretty cool.

Mike McGranaghan, Aisle Seat:

I’m not sure I see any great harm in critics revealing their ballots, but I’m not sure how interesting it is to readers, either. My suspicion is that the public cares more about who actually wins than about the behind-the-scenes voting process. If anything, revealing one’s ballot is more likely to dilute whatever power the award has, since many people already feel “awards overload” at this time of year.

Anton Bitel, Channel 4 Film:

Yes – to serve as a concrete reminder that behind every corporate selection made by a critics’ body there is a collection of individual, often widely varied selections. It is always worthwhile exposing the myth of ‘critical consensus’ that awards can sometimes perpetuate.

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