Aurora Awards

Canadian Science Fiction & Fantasy Association

Aurora Award Rules

The Aurora awards are run by the Canadian Science Fiction and Fantasy Association (CSFFA), a federally registered non-profit society. The awards recognize the best Canadian professional and amateur (fan) achievements for the prior calendar year (January 1st through December 31st).

Special Note: As of the 2011 AGM, CSFFA and the Aurora Awards requires everyone to purchase a society membership to nominate, vote or participate in the AGM. The annual dues are just $10 (on-line or mail-in) and are valid from January to December of the calendar year no matter when in the year they are purchased. CSFFA members are those who have already paid for their membership for the current calendar year.

If you registered with CSFFA in the past your account is still valid and you do not need to create a new account.

The following rules cover both nominations and voting for an Aurora award. Submitting a ballot will be taken as your acknowledgment that you have read and agree to abide by these rules.

Members must adhere to the following rules. In the event that the Awards committee feels that one or more of these rules has been violated by a participant, they may reject any or all nominations or votes from or for that participant without notification. The decision of the Awards committee is final.

  1. The Auroras are only for Canadian citizens or permanent residents. Canadian citizens living abroad are eligible.
  2. There are annual dues to be a member of CSFFA which will be set by the CSFFA between Canventions. This fee is used to administer the awards. All society members are required to pay this fee.
  3. Canventions are where the Aurora awards are present and are hosted by Canadian genre conventions alternating between eastern and western Canada.
  4. Members, those that have paid their annual dues, are permitted to submit one nomination form and one voting ballot per year.
  5. Nomination and voting deadlines will be set by the CSFFA between Canventions
  6. Each member is expected to fill in their own nomination form or voting ballot, reflecting their individual preferences.
  7. If ballots are mailed in they each form must be in a separate envelope, except for members of a single household who may send in their forms together. Clubs are requested to not mail their members’ forms in bulk.
  8. The ballots are counted using the “Alternate Ballot System”. See detail explanation in “Voting Method” document from the link on your membership page.
  9. No one may offer or accept an inducement in order to influence a nomination or vote.
  10. The “No Award” option for each of the Aurora categories is to be used ONLY in a situation where you feel that one or more of the nominees do not deserve to be on the ballot. It is NOT to be used if you are unfamiliar with the category or have not read a nominee’s work.

Through the Aurora awards, CSFFA encourages Canadian fans to take an active role in selecting the best of genre fiction and related activities. It is our hope that Canadians will hold spirited discussions, but we discourage anyone from advising others on how to place their votes. In the spirit of fan based awards, it is the right and responsibility of every member to make their own decisions. Members are expected to be familiar with the works they are selecting. Members are asked to vote in categories where they are familiar with more than one of the nominees. Clubs should avoid influencing their members’ nominations or votes.

To support the ongoing costs of the awards and the society, a non-refundable fee is associated with being a member of CSFFA. This fee will be revisited after each Canvention and will be clearly identified on nomination forms and voting ballots, both online and paper. Fees must be paid by individual voters, not a third party. Members are reminded that processing of paper ballots can be time consuming and has the potential for misinterpretation. The awards committee will make every effort to honour the spirit of a voter’s intentions, but has little flexibility if the member fails to make their intention clear.

Please visit www.prixaurorawards.ca to submit your nomination or ballot, depending on the time of year.

Please note that the French professional categories are now being coordinated and held at the Congrès Boréal which is held in Quebec. For full details visit their website. (http://www.congresboreal.ca/)

How to Vote: This ballot uses a modified version of the Alternate Vote System, sometimes known as the Instant Runoff Ballot. To vote, mark your choices in each category in order of preference: “1” for first place, “2” for second place, and so on. You are not required to rank all the nominees in any category, and we recommend that you not vote in any category in which you are not familiar with a majority of the nominees. If you decide not to vote in a given category, leave it blank. Note that “No Award” is not an abstention, but a vote that none of the nominees should be given the award in question. When the ballots are counted, all the first place votes will be tabulated. If no nominee receives half or more of the votes, the nominee with the fewest first place votes is eliminated, and its votes are transferred to the nominees marked “2” on those ballots. This process of elimination continues until one nominee receives half or more of the votes, at which point it becomes the winner (unless the votes are outnumbered by “No Award” votes.

A few tips which may help you in voting:

  1. Please keep in mind that second and further preferences play no part in the voting unless and until your first choice is eliminated. This is not a point system where the second choices of many voters can overwhelm the first choice of a few voters. We suggest that after marking your first choice, you proceed by imagining that it has disappeared from the ballot, and placing your “2” by the remaining nominee you most prefer, and so on. This mimics the way the ballots are actually counted. Thus, even if your heart is set on one nominee, don’t hesitate to give “2” (and other) rankings to other nominees you also consider worthy of the award.
  2. Nevertheless, if your top choices are eliminated early, your lower preferences could be the tie-breaker between the remaining nominees, so choose all your preferences carefully! No matter how much you disfavor a nominee, if you rank it, the vote will be counted if all of your previous choices are eliminated. We recommend that you rank a nominee that you do not consider worthy of the award below “No Award” if you rank it at all.

Note: If you are unfamiliar with a category or its nominated works do not rank any of them.

No Award Option: The “No Award” option for each of the Aurora categories is to be used ONLY in a situation where you feel that one or more of the nominees does not deserve to be on the ballot. It is NOT to be used if you are unfamiliar with a category or have not read a nominee’s work.