2014 Nigerian Blog Awards winners announced on Twitter

Winners of the 2014 Nigerian Blog Awards were announced on Twitter on April 18, 2015, beginning at 8:00pm Nigeria Time. The online Awards show lasted just over two hours and many took part by retweeting the announcements of winners and also adding certain tweets to their list of favourites.

We thank all who participated in the process of narrowing the hundreds of nominated blogs to just 25 unique winners. We also gratefully appreciate all who participated by nominating blogs, serving as a panelist, voting, and finally attending the Twitter Awards Show—you are the backbone of the Nigerian Blog Awards!

Finally, we acknowledge our sponsors DomainKing Nigeria and TradeSpotters.

Process and answers to questions we’ve received

The nominees for the 2014 Nigerian Blog Awards were announced on March 23, 2015, voting began immediately and will end on April 6, 2015 at 7:59am EST.

2014 Nigerian Blog Awards – Vote now!

Here’s some more information about the process that was used to determine the nominees.

  1. Nominations were open to the public between January 12 and February 1, and everyone was welcome to nominate a blog in up to three of the available 27 categories.
  2. Once nominations closed, each nominated blog was visited by the Nigerian Blog Awards to ensure that it met the eligibility requirements and was appropriate for the category it was nominated in.
  3. A shortlist of 10 blogs per category (15 for the Best Overall Nigerian Blog category) was developed, taking into account factors which included primarily:
    • the consistency of the blogging (how often the blog was updated)
    • the level of engagement from readers (whether the blog receives comments)
    • how much of the blog is original content versus information from other sources (this took into account the fact that some blog categories rely more heavily on already existing content than others)
    • the writing quality with respect to grammar and spelling only (this was the second least important aspect)
    • the visual appeal of the blog (this was the least important aspect)

    This shortlist was sent to panelists to narrow down to five (and in one category, 10) blogs. These blogs were announced as the nominees.

  4. Voting will take place from March 23 to April 6, and the winning blog will be the one that receives the most votes—only one winner will be announced per category.
  5. Winners will be announced on Saturday, April 11, 2015 during a Twitter Awards show that will begin at 3:00pm EST (8:00pm Nigeria Time).

Now, to address questions or comments that we’ve received. First off, we encourage you to read the observations we made following the close of the nomination period.

Why wasn’t a particular blog a nominee?
Was the blog submitted as a nominee during the nomination period? This is important because the Nigerian Blog Awards does not seek out nominees for various categories—it is the responsibility of the blogger to nominate their own blog, or for fans of the blog to nominate it.

Most categories received a large number of qualified nominations and the factors outlined above were used to narrow down the nominees. While it is possible that your blog was not shortlisted, your blog may have been on the shortlist, but did not receive enough votes from the panelists to be an official nominee.

Who were these panelists?
The panelists were a subsection of the individuals who took the time to submit nominations (please see #3 above).

Why isn’t there a blog category for X?
There may not be many blogs in that category, or the category can be covered by another category. Also, in the interest of keeping the length of the Twitter Awards show to less than 3 hours, we are trying to keep the number of categories to a minimum. When we move to a live Awards show, the number of categories that will be announced live will be even fewer than the current 27 categories.

Why was my blog nominated in category X and not category Y?
Nominations were submitted by bloggers and readers of blogs; the Nigerian Blog Awards was not responsible for nominating blogs in a particular category. We simply evaluated the blogs nominated in a particular category and determined whether or not the nominated blog matched the description we provided for each category.

We disagree with the selected nominees for a category
It is unfortunate that you are dissatisfied with the nominees, but we hope that this explanation of process is useful.

This is our fifth Nigerian Blog Awards and each year we receive feedback along these lines. As you know, it is impossible to please everyone so rather than going on the defensive, we prefer to share the facts of the process and allow you to draw their own conclusions.

PS Please also see our previous blog post, Observations made following the close of the nomination period.

2014 Nigerian Blog Awards – Vote now!

Update on the Nigerian Blog Awards

Thank you for your participation in the 2014 Nigerian Blog Awards so far. It’s time to provide you with an update, so you know what has been going on since nominations closed on February 1.

In previous years, the shortlist of nominees was determined by the blogs that received the most nominations: after compiling the list of the blogs that received the most nominations by category, we would select the most appropriate finalists from each list. This time, we decided that each and every nominated blog, whether it received 250 nominations or one, should be considered in the category they were nominated in so that is what we have done. This decision quintupled (at least) the time required to compile the shortlist.

Because of the additional time needed to finalize the shortlist, voting will not begin on March 4 as planned. Although the shortlist has been compiled, it will now be sent to randomly-selected panelists to select the nominees. Each panelist will be assigned 10 categories. Voting is now expected to begin on March 23.

Key observations

  1. There are more excellent blogs out there than we can recognize
    That doesn’t surprise you, of course. Due to the constraints of the Awards, we cannot name every deserving blogger as a nominee; as a result those retained as nominees represent just a fraction of the talent out there. If you are not nominated it does not mean you are not a good blogger. We encourage bloggers who are creating amazing, original content to continue—your voice is needed and appreciated.
  2. Consistent blogging is important
    Because of point 1 above, we had to look for blogs that posted new content in a consistent fashion, without large time periods between posts. It doesn’t mean that a blog with 20 posts is better than another with 10 posts in the same time period, but in some categories we had to use this to narrow down the list.

    Note: we focused on blogging that took place in 2014.

  3. Diversity within a blog category is good
    Some categories were dominated by one sex over the other (e.g. all the sports blogs nominated appeared to be written by males; while most of the fashion blogs were written by females), while in other categories there were similarities in structure (e.g. most nominees in the Book, Poetry, or Writing category were blogs telling multi-part stories. In situations where we could, we tried to include blogs representative of the different types of writing for that category.
  4. Jack of all trades, master of none?
    If a blog can fit under more than one category, it often did not end up on the shortlist. Why? Because there were usually many other blogs focused only on the category in question. For example, a blog covering fashion, food, and fitness may not end up on the short list for any of those categories because of other blogs focused only on fashion, or food, or fitness that were deemed a better fit for the category.
  5. Different expectations for different blog categories?
    To us, blogging should be about originality and uniqueness: sharing your ideas in your own way. While most categories contain an abundance of blogs that do this, some categories (e.g. Entertainment, Music, Nigerian News, Politics, Sports, and Technology) rely heavily on existing information. As a result many blogs in the aforementioned categories contain the same information, verbatim, making it difficult to determine the original source. We have a challenge for these blogs:
    Take more time to add your unique spin or viewpoint to the existing information. Rather than copying and pasting the same information that your peers in the blog category have done, find your way to stand out. Your blog should give your readers a reason to visit your blog rather than your peer’s blog containing the same information.

We’ll end this post with a poll:

FAQs about the 2014 Nigerian Blog Awards

As the first week of nominations comes to a close, we’ve received some questions that we’d like to answer here.

  1. Can I nominate my own blog?
    Yes, absolutely!
  2. How many of my blogs can I nominate?
    You may nominate as many of your eligible blogs as you wish (note: each blog may only be nominated for a maximum of three categories on the nomination form!).
  3. Are blogspot.com and wordpress.com blogs eligible?
  4. How many times can I submit a nomination from my email address?
    Each email address may submit one nomination form.
  5. How many nominations do I need to be considered as a nominee?
    There is no set number of nominations: we are looking for blogs that best match the description of each category, which can be found on this page or on the nomination form.
  6. What are the criteria for nomination?
    In addition to fitting the description of the category, general criteria can be found here.

    Blogs that share original content rather than copy and pasted content from other sources are preferred.

  7. How many nominees will there be per category?
    The first 26 categories will have 5 finalists each. Category 27, Best Overall Nigerian Blog, will have 10 finalists.
  8. What if none of the categories listed fit my blog?
    The Best Topical Blog category is for blogs that do not fit any of the other categories.
  9. What should I do if I don’t receive the confirmation email after submitting my nomination?
    Sorry for the inconvenience! Please email us at help@nigerianblogawards.com.
  10. When do nominations close?
    Nominations close on February 1 at 11:59pm EST (February 2 at 5:59am Nigeria Time). A full schedule (subject to change) is posted here.

If you’re ready, you can nominate blogs now by clicking below.

If you have any other questions, please leave them in the comments below, or email us at help@nigerianblogawards.com. Thank you for your participation in the 2014 Nigerian Blog Awards.

2014 Nigerian Blog Awards nominations are now open

We’ll keep this update short and sweet:

Nominations for the 2014 Nigerian Blog Awards are now open. Please read the nomination form carefully before completing it so that you’re not disappointed if a blog you nominate is ineligible to win an Award, or if your nomination isn’t counted.

Nominations don’t close until February 1, 2015 so if you’re a blogger, you have plenty of time to campaign for nominations.

Please share any questions you have in the comments below.

TENTATIVE schedule for the 2014 Nigerian Blog Awards

As mentioned in our update on the 2014 Nigerian Blog Awards, here is more information about the 2014 Nigerian Blog Awards which will begin on January 512, 2015.

Please note that the following is a TENTATIVE schedule and is subject to change.

January 12, 2015
Nominations open

February 1, 2015
Nominations close at 11:59pm EST

February 2 to March 1, 2015
Verification of nominated blogs

March 2, 2015
Panelist voting begins

March 16, 2015
Panelist voting ends

March 23, 2015
Nominees revealed and voting begins

April 5 OR 12, 2015 (see poll)
Voting ends at 11:59pm EST

April 11 OR 18, 2015 (see poll)
Winners revealed in Twitter Awards Show starting at 3:00pm EST

Panelist voting

As mentioned in last week’s update, we will be introducing panelist voting this year. All who fill out the nominee form will be asked to indicate their willingness to be a panelist. By saying yes, a panelist is committing to reviewing the top nominated blogs in 10 randomly-assigned categories, and selecting their top five blogs in each of the categories assigned to them. The 200 panelists will be selected randomly from those who agree to be a panelist.

Please also see the tentative list of categories for the 2014 Nigerian Blog Awards.

Update concerning the 2014 Nigerian Blog Awards

Thank you for your patience in waiting for news concerning the 2014 Nigerian Blog Awards. It was our intent to announce the 2014 Nigerian Blog Awards winners during a live event in Lagos; however it is not financially feasible this year. Winners will be announced online as we have done since 2010, and we still intend to hold live Nigerian Blog Awards events in the future.

In response to the feedback we’ve received, here are some of the changes for the 2014 Nigerian Blog Awards:

  • Only one winner will be announced per category.
  • 200 randomly-selected individuals who submit a nomination will be invited to narrow down the finalists in 10 random categories, each of which will contain the blogs that received the most nominations in that category.
  • Winners will receive a tangible recognition of their achievement.

More information will be provided in the coming weeks, but the most important information to to note is that nominations for the 2014 Nigerian Blog Awards will open on Monday, January 5, 2015 and the schedule for the Awards will be posted on our blog and emailed to those who have subscribed to receive emails before that time.

If you’re a blogger who intends to contend for an Award, keep blogging, with a focus on creating unique and useful content, and avoid plagiarism (copying other people’s work). We continue to strive to recognize only those creating quality content.

If you have any questions, please let us know in the comments below. You may also reach us on Facebook or Twitter.

2014 blog categories

Every year we look at the previous Awards’ categories and make changes to:

  • eliminate categories that were ambiguous or confusing
  • eliminate categories that did not receive many nominations
  • add categories that are in high demand, as determined by emails and comments we received

Since we’re planning a live Awards event for 2014, we have to consider the logistics of giving Awards in 30 categories, and the time that would be required to do this in a live event situation. As a result we will either reduce the number of available categories, or announce the winners in the 20 most popular categories at the live show but present the other Awards off the air, or both.

Here is the tentative list of categories for the 2014 Nigerian Blog Awards:

  1. Best Beauty or Hair Blog
    We’re proposing to expand this category to include hair since many hair blogs are nominated in this category but excluded since the definition of the category historically didn’t include hair.
  2. Best Book, Poetry, or Writing Blog
  3. Best Business or Entrepreneurship Blog
  4. Best Career or Job Blog
  5. Best Education Blog
    This category was previously named Best Educational or Instructional Blog and has been renamed for clarity
  6. Best Entertainment Blog
  7. Best Faith-based Blog
  8. Best Fashion or Personal Style Blog
  9. Best Fitness or Health Blog
  10. Best Food Blog
  11. Best Humour Blog
  12. Best Motivation or Inspiration Blog
    This category was previously a Nigerian Blog Awards category but eliminated because motivation and inspiration can be rather broadly defined. However, it is a category in high demand so we will try again in 2014.
  13. Best Movie Blog
  14. Best Music Blog
  15. Best New Blog
  16. Best Nigerian News Blog
    This category was previously called Best News Blog, but in 2014 we would like to focus on news from or about Nigeria.
  17. Best Parenting or Family Blog
  18. Best Personal Blog
  19. Best Photography Blog
  20. Best Political Blog
  21. Best Relationship Blog
  22. Best Sports Blog
  23. Best Technology Blog
    This category was previously named Best Science and Technology Blog.
  24. Best Topical Blog
  25. Best Travel or Tourism Blog
  26. Best Wedding Blog
  27. Best Overall Nigerian Blog
    This category was previously called Nigerian Blog of the Year

The following categories are under consideration for REMOVAL:

  • Best Collaborative or Group Blog
    This category historically receives a low number of nominees.
  • Best-Designed Blog
    This category historically received a very low number of valid nominees.
  • Best Student Blog
    This category was defined as “Blog by an individual currently enrolled in school” but it can be captured in one of the other categories.

The following great categories were suggested but due to low numbers of blogs currently in these categories, they will not be added this year:

  • Best Arts Blog
  • Best Craft Blog
  • Best Culture Blog
  • Best Development Blog
  • Best Indigenous Language Blog
  • Best Foreign News Blog

What do you think? Which categories are missing in your opinion?

2013 Nigerian Blog Awards winners!

Did you tune in to our Twitter Awards show yesterday? If not, don’t despair, the winners are listed below for your convenience.

Before we launch into the winners, in response to questions we received during the Awards show:

  • Every year I see the value of rallying your fan base. The voting period was four weeks long this year and those who were sending tweets to their fans right until the end seemed to do well with regard to winning in the Popular Vote category.
  • Judges include current or past bloggers, those who enjoy reading blogs, and writers. Their work is to compare the blogs nominated in a category, and based on the short description provided for each category, select the blog in the list that best reflects the description. In addition to using their respective background, they are free to select the blog that speaks most to them within the criteria provided.
  • As we did in 2012, we announce both the Popular Vote winner (the nominee that received the most votes) and the Judges’ Choice winner (determined by a small group of judges who looked at all the blogs in a category before selecting a winner). We started this last year because we think there’s value in both:
    1. having a small group of people who will actually read some of the content in all the nominated blogs in a category before making a decision based on the content seen across the blogs
    2. a blogger rallying their fans and friends to vote for them

    However, this means we announced 58 winners this year, which is entirely too many, especially since we want to hold a live event in 2014. So, next year we will announce one winner per category, but we will arrive at a winner by taking into account both of the above ideas: we want to encourage bloggers to rally fans, but we also need a quality assurance element.

  • Bella Naija decided several years ago that it would not contend in the Nigerian Blog Awards.

But the real reason you’re here is below—please help us congratulate the winners!

Best Beauty Blog
Blog about makeup or other beauty products

Best Book, Poetry, or Writing Blog
Blog that focuses on books, poetry, or writing, in particular the blogger’s original works

Best Business or Entrepreneurship Blog
Blog that focuses on building a business or on entrepreneurship

Best Career or Job Blog
Blog that focuses on developing career skills or on finding jobs

Best Collaborative or Group Blog
Blog on any topic, written by two or more people

Best-Designed Blog
Blog that is visually appealing. Although the design can be based on a template, it must be modified from the original template

Best Educational or Instructional Blog
Blog that focuses on the education industry, or on instructing its readers through tutorials

Best Entertainment Blog
Blog about the entertainment industry, including celebrities and gossip

Best Faith-based Blog
Blog with a focus on religious beliefs or themes

Best Fashion or Personal Style Blog
Blog about fashion, fashion design, or personal style

Best Fitness or Health Blog
Blog that focuses on healthy living, exercise, or wellness

Best Food Blog
Blog with a focus on food, cooking, catering, or similar

Best Humour Blog
Blog that is amusing or lighthearted in nature

Best Movie Blog
Blog about Nollywood or other movie industry, or movies more generally

Best Music Blog
Blog that focuses on music or the music industry

Best New Blog
Blog established in August 2012 or more recently

Best News Blog
Blog with a focus on Nigerian news or current events

Best Parenting or Family Blog
Blog with a strong focus on parenting, family life, or the journey to become a parent

Best Personal Blog
Blog that focuses on the author’s experiences, or shares the author’s opinion on a variety of topics

Best Photography Blog
Blog that focuses on photography and includes the blogger’s original photographs

Best Political Blog
Blog with a strong focus on Nigerian politics

Best Relationship Blog
Blog with a focus on romantic relationships

Best Science or Technology Blog
Blog about science or technology, including information technology

Best Sports Blog
Blog that focuses on Nigerians in sports, or on sports in general

Best Student Blog
Blog by an individual currently enrolled in school

Best Topical Blog
Blog with a clear niche that is not represented in any of the other categories

  • Popular Vote: Free Naija Lyrics (Niche: Song lyrics)
  • Judges’ Choice: Emeka Talks (Niche: success, personal development, self improvement)

Best Travel or Tourism Blog
Blog about travelling within Nigeria, Africa, or elsewhere in the world

Best Wedding Blog
Blog that covers personal preparations for a wedding, weddings in general, or industries related to weddings such as event planning or coordinating

Nigerian Blog of the Year
Best overall blog by a Nigerian or best blog with a strong focus on any aspect of Nigeria

We thank all who participated by nominating blogs, voting for blogs, and chiming in during our Twitter Awards show. We will be asking for your feedback shortly, but in the meantime, please feel free to leave any comments you have. Each year, we strive to do better than the previous year.

Voting for the 2013 Nigerian Blog Awards is OPEN

Title says it all: you can now VOTE for your favourite nominees in the 2013 Nigerian Blog Awards.

Please note that you have four weeks, until December 8, 2013 at 11:59pm EST (December 9, 2013 at 5:59am Nigeria Time) to vote, so there is NO RUSH. Take the time to visit the blogs and read them, so that you can make an informed choice. This will allow the voting to most accurately reflect the quality of the winning blogs.

The following guidelines appear on the voting page, but we’re including them here for you as well:

  1. If you did not participate in the 2013 nomination phase: Enter your name and a valid email address. Double check your email address BEFORE submitting: if it is incorrect you will not receive a validation email. After submitting your voting form, check your email (including junk mail and spam folders) for an email from nigerianblogawards@gmail.com and click the link in the email—this ensures your votes are counted.
  2. If you nominated a blog in September or October 2013 and clicked the validation link in your email: you will not receive an email and your vote will be immediately counted.
  3. If you nominated a blog in September or October 2013 and did not click the validation link in your email: please check your email (including spam and junk mail folders) for an email from nigerianblogawards@gmail.com and click the link in the email.
  4. Vote for one blog in each category. You may leave a category empty if you wish.
  5. If you do not enter your email address in an appropriate format, you will be asked to enter a valid email and you will need to resubmit your votes.

If you have any questions or need assistance, just email nigerianblogawards@gmail.com.

Happy Voting!