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May 31, 2009

Prospectus Idol

Round Two - Fantasy

by Dave Pease

Welcome to another week of the internet's most popular ripoff of the 800-pound gorilla of live-action talent contests-Prospectus Idol. Tortured metaphors aside, it's been seven days since we saw the last of our dashing pool of contestants' content, so let's dive right in.

I'm Dave Pease, and as always, we're glad to have you here. We've also been reading the many great questions and interesting threads in the comments sections of each page. I'm especially gratified to see the practical suggestions and commentary for each of our contestants. We're frequently pleased by the things we read in the comments here at Baseball Prospectus, but we really like this. The questions, on the other hand-I really think if you'd just read everything we've written about this contest, you'd have most of them answered.

Actually, joking aside, that might be true-but we've written thousands of words about this contest, and nobody's actually going to take that for an answer. Nor should they. Sorry for not being clearer about some of the aspects of this contest, folks! We're going to take some of those questions and answer them right here, right now, with the help of our hardworking backup band. Hit it!

Band plays: Sonny and Cher, "I Got You Babe"

I've written lots of this in the comments, so if you've read it before, I hope it's a little more complete here, and lots of people don't read the comments, so here goes for the wider audience:

AC/DC, "Highway to Hell"

Elimination: We count yes votes only, and whoever has the least of them does not advance to the next round. As I awkwardly wrote last week, we know how many non-votes an article has too, but we don't take the ratio of those two figures for anything except our native interest. If you have a Baseball Prospectus Premium or Fantasy subscription, you can vote. We are not accepting Basic-level voters for this competition for several reasons. One of these is that we're especially interested in what our paying subscribers think of these writers. One of these is that if people could freely vote in this contest, the contestant with the internet persona of most wide-spread reader interest would have a large advantage of their relative ability to publicize their work and attract biased voters.

Ron Clark Academy Players, "You Can Vote However You Like"

Voting: When you visit the BP Idol homepage while voting period is open, you'll see the contestant entries in a random order. This order is different for each logged-in user and will change over time for that user. Since we don't have to publish them in any set order, we're not giving unfair advantage to whoever would appear at the top of the list most often. You are, of course, free to visit the articles each week in any order you choose.

Clicking on and off the thumb doesn't cast numerous yes votes. All we count is each account's vote status on each article when voting ends. Feel free to change your vote before then.

When voting, ask yourself, "Do I like this article and/or contestant and want them to continue in this contest?" If yes, make sure the thumbs-up is clicked. It's that simple.



YES
I want this person to be writing next week

NO
I do not think this person should quit their day job

John Williams, "Star Wars Imperial March"

Timeline: we will publish the week's articles on Sunday-no guaranteed time-and voting begins then. Your votes are always due by the following Tuesday, 8 p.m. Pacific. For example, this article was posted on Sunday, May 31, and voting is now open. You'll need to have your thumbs clicked by Tuesday, Jun 2, by 8 p.m. Pacific. You'll see the black Prospectus Idol bar across the page frame counting down to the end of voting while voting is open. This gives you about two days and a few hours to vote.

We know that's not a lot of time, and that especially in the beginning that's a lot to go through. Please don't feel obligated to vote, first of all, and take your time making it through the articles if that means you'll enjoy them more-there's going to be a lot in there to digest on any given week. We've got plenty of voters. We'd love to hear what you think on the articles, but don't drive yourself to frustration getting there.

More generally, we need that hard deadline to see who's going to meet it regular as clockwork and who has less success with their entries week-to-week. Both BP and our partners are looking for the contestants to produce content on topics that might not be of their choosing on a regular basis by the playoffs this year. There's a huge difference between someone who can produce a few excellent articles on topics of their choosing in a year, and someone who can do it on weekly assignment. We love to work with both types, but we're looking for the latter in this contest.

Finally, we thought of this too late to allow for much more voting or writing time this year even if we wanted to. Next year we'll have more time to get everything set up, and perhaps we'll take a more leisurely pace.

This week, we asked our contestants to get fantastic.

Coolio, "Fantastic Voyage"

This week's theme is "Fantasy!" Yeah, it's broad, but we want you to really make this your own, taking it in whatever direction you feel is best suited to your talents and that will win over thousands of voters. The only thing we definitely have to see is a "takeaway"-some kind of tip or action that a fantasy owner can use for their team. This could be a sleeper you've identified or a technique for finding an undervalued player, or ... well anything.

To read the articles and vote, click here to visit the Prospectus Idol page.

Dave Pease is an author of Baseball Prospectus. 
Click here to see Dave's other articles. You can contact Dave by clicking here

64 comments have been left for this article.

<< Previous Article
Premium Article On the Beat: Weekend R... (05/31)
<< Previous Column
Prospectus Idol: Round... (05/25)
Next Column >>
Prospectus Idol: Round... (06/07)
Next Article >>
The Week in Quotes: Ma... (06/01)

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