It's time again for the Nigerian Blog Awards! Starting Monday, voters can cast their ballot for the best blog in over 30 categories, ranging from “Best Fashion Blog” to “Most Controversial Blog” to “Best Student Blog” and more. For those unacquainted with the Nigerian blogging community, the awards are a convenient point of introduction to what is arguably the largest and most active blogosphere in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Between May 10th and 24th, more than 200 netizens submitted nominations for their favorite blog in 30 categories. Nominators could choose from a list the organizers provided of nearly 500 blogs, or they could suggest a blog from off the list. The criteria for nominations were inclusive: Nigerian bloggers from around the world were encouraged to participate (it is estimated that more than 1 in 10 Nigerians lives outside the country), and non-Nigerians whose blogs focus on Nigeria were also invited to take part. “Are you a Nigerian blogger or does your blog focus on Nigeria? Has your blog been updated in the last six months? Is your blog publicly accessible?” the website asks. If so, you are eligible to compete for an award.
The nominees for the most contested category, “Nigerian Blog of the Year”, are below:
You can see the nominees in the 29 other categories here.
Sub-Saharan Africa is known neither for its high Internet penetration nor for its blogging activity – but Nigeria leads the region, with Internet penetration at 11% (11 million), a figure second only to Egypt's on the African continent. Nigeria's vibrant blogging community is just one reason to take note of the blogging awards, and to get acquainted with some of the best Nigerian blogs.
The voting beginning Monday is only one half of the Awards program. The Blog Awards are divided into two sections: Group A recognizes the best in traditional categories such as Political Blogs, Parenting Blogs, etc., while Group B focuses on “fun” categories (last year's awards included “Say What?! – Most confusing Blogger” and “Blogsville magician/Disappearing act – disappears for long periods without any explanation”).
The 2010 Awards are organized by Good Naija Girl, with help from HappyBBB, Tinuo, Adeola, and Sting (organizer of the 2009 Awards). Good Naija Girl says she hopes to expand participation to the wider community, making the Awards “a well-established hub for connecting Nigerian bloggers or bloggers with a focus on Nigeria worldwide.”
Voting for Group A takes place between Monday, May 31st and Sunday, June 6th. Winners to be announced June 7th. Nominations for Group B begin mid-June.