Canadian Magazine Industry News
6 April 2011,     TORONTO
Snafu creates premature Mag Awards finalist list
Computer gremlins and the viral nature of the Internet combined to create the "perfect storm" for the National Magazine Awards Foundation, as a premature list of finalists was inadvertently released and widely distributed earlier today.

At first, NMAF officials thought someone had hacked into their computer system to create a counterfeit list. But investigation revealed a software glitch that created an inaccurate list of nominees; judging is not complete.

"It was the perfect storm of circumstances," says NMAF general manager Barbara Gould. It appears a bookmarked page created an automatically generated list pulling from the system's database, even though the page was supposed to be toggled off. The Foundation posted an explanation of what happened on its web site.

Once revealed, the list was circulated, setting off a small tornado of tweets and emails from the hard-core magazine crowd.

The official list, always highly anticipated, will not be released until May 2.

The KRW Awards, honouring the best in business-to-business publishing, is managed by the same organization and uses the same computer system. However, the automatic reporting functioning that created the false NMA list is not used for the KRWs.

Gould says the NMAF system has been fixed to prevent the problem from happening again.

The National Magazine Awards winners will be announced at the annual awards event in Toronto on June 10. The KRW Award winners will be revealed at its gala on June 7.

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