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Gold Award Winners 2018

Ouddict

Ouddict Co-Founder & Tech Support
Wild Oud of the Year Winners
Again, it seems that fate tied the three Vendor of Year 2018 winners together with an equal amount of votes for their winning Wild Oud of the Year 2018 final entries.

Kuzen by AgarAura. An amazing oil for the price and now sold out so if you can bag yourself one from a private collector, consider yourself very fortunate. Crafted from Wild Cambodi wood by Taha himself, this oil is a revelation and rightly deserves to win the Gold Award for Wild Oud of the Year 2018.

Ibn Zamrak by Al Hashimi. While I think that Kanz is the finest Al Hashimi oil currently on sale, the Ibn Zamrak is a tour-de-force of an oil. This was custom distilled back in July, 2017 from high grade wood and has in the short period it has been ageing, it has really hit the spot for the few private buyers who managed to buy it. It will only improve with time and garnered many votes for this vendor.

Tigerwood Royale by Ensar Oud. Ensar did it yet again. Somehow, through his enviable and vast network of agarwood contacts, he managed to find an ancient treasure. Tigerwood Royale has been on sale for a while and it is not certain how long it will be around for, but if you consider yourself an oud connoisseur, this is one Oud you must experience.


Organic Oud of the Year Winners

Trad by Al Hashimi. Al Hashimi are unabashedly out to reclaim and represent the tradition of the Arabian Oud houses in their heydays. They have pulled off a coup here with a blend of over a dozen aged Thai oils from different parts of an agarwood trees aged over 25 years, to present the full olfactory spectrum available from Trat oils... in one special oil.


Natural Perfume of the Year Winner

Euphoria by Tyson Lee Mortensen. Along with Al Hashimi, Tyson is another emerging vendor who has grown on Ouddict and amazed fellow members with his truly artisanal essential oils distilled by him in person. I am probably not the best person to speak about Euphoria as I have not tried it, but judging by other oils I have received from Tyson and from the way that Euphoria stormed into the lead in the first and final voting rounds, I have no doubt that it has to be a very special creation indeed. Hoping to see more of the same from Tyson in 2019.

2018 Winner Gold Awards.png
 

Ouddict

Ouddict Co-Founder & Tech Support
By the way, if any vendor wishes to use the above awards, please contact me for the high resolution file.
 

powdernose

Oud Sprite
Congratulations to all the winners!

As a personal note,
Note for Vendors and Vendor Associates
1. You can take part in the Oud of the Year
2. You cannot nominate your own products.
3. You can vote for your own products if nominated.
In my opinion vendors should not be allowed to vote for their own wares in the future.
The vote count is low enough that even a single vote can have significant impact.
 

Ouddict

Ouddict Co-Founder & Tech Support
Congratulations to all the winners!

As a personal note,

In my opinion vendors should not be allowed to vote for their own wares in the future.
The vote count is low enough that even a single vote can have significant impact.

Good point and it is something that we tried to prevent last year, but in all honesty we could not as we do not have the technical set-up to see who is voting for what. So instead of trying to prevent something we cannot, we simply allowed all people to vote. We did have an extensive discussion amongst the staff, one of whom made the same point as you.

However I don't accept your point that it makes a material difference to the vote as you can see that the leading vendors received 49 votes each... even if each vendor had voted for themselves, it still would not have made that much of a difference. The final voting round tends to produce a lot less votes - the same happened last year - and I believe it is because people vote in the first round and then don't follow up. We will try and rectify this next year.

But to address your point properly, consider the following points, all of which together, far outweigh any perceived advantage from what you have said.

1. Some vendors give out a lot of free samples that do not result in sales. Given that only people who have tried an oud can vote for it, a vendor giving out samples like it’s Christmas has an advantage which is not due to sales, but in effect, lobbying over the year. Of course, I am not saying it is intentional lobbying, but it has the same effect nonetheless. Is it fair for a vendor to garner votes that have been picked up from giving out free samples intsead of actually making a genuine sale? It is debatable.

2. It’s a secret ballot for a reason. Not all people are comfortable with others knowing how they vote. Some don’t even want to nominate any Oud publicly. So while we had this vendor cannot vote for their own Ouds rule last year, we couldn’t police it and even if technically possible, it would violate the secret ballot rule which I think is more important. It’s this more than anything else that made me drop the rule this year.

3. I am sure - no, I know - that certain people vote politically. I’m referring to the customers of a vendor not on this forum who came over and voted for him en masse even though they hardly post on this forum anymore - I know this as I although I could not see who voted for what, I could see who was visiting the page in real time and the vote tally increasing for certain Ouds. For me it's not worth bothering with and if that is what people want to do then it is not something we can prevent.

4. Any vendor who has a single Oud in the final round automatically has a structural advantage due to the nature of the vote. Therefore, all vendors who did really well in the first round are at a disadvantage with many of their Ouds vying for votes in the final round and "splitting" the votes in their favour. Again, there is nothing we can do about it as it’s just the nature of the beast. But for the vendors who have their votes spread out across several oud choices in that final round, they are effectively at a disadvantage as the votes are spread thin. This happened to Agar Aura especially. It’s ironic, but the advantage is undeniable as no one can see the voting results until they have voted in order to try and curtail strategic voting for a particular Oud or vendor. The idea of the whole exercise is to try and get a fair vote as is possible. It’s not perfect for sure, but it’s the best we can do at the moment and certainly there is nothing like this anywhere else online for Oud or natural perfumes.

5. There is nothing to stop a vendor from lobbying their friends on the forum to vote and sending a sample to them to confirm with the rules or even asking their relatives to join and vote. It’s not in the spirit of the vote, but it’s something that can and probably does happen. Can’t be stopped I’m afraid.

I could go on and on about examples on practices that might "skew' the vote, of which your example is only one. I’ve taken time to answer this as it could put doubts in the minds of people and it is not the case that certain vendors are only ahead due to this one advantage when there are many other factors involved. Let's just take this exercise with a pinch of salt and enjoy it for what it is instead of dissecting every little detail until there is no mystery and the joy is sucked out of everything we do on here.

Now for my most important point. The vote is unparalleled in the Oud world for its size and scope and running activities like this takes a lot of my personal time. We are looking for more moderators to join our staff so as you take a keen interest in forum affairs and regulation matters in general, I am inviting you to join up as a moderator and have a say in things. You could end up running next year's vote for Oud of the Year 2019! PM me if you are interested.
 

powdernose

Oud Sprite
Good point and it is something that we tried to prevent last year, but in all honesty we could not as we do not have the technical set-up to see who is voting for what.

Good point about the technical limitations, no doubt they can hinder ideal setups.
And you brought up quite a few other good points, thank you for addressing them.

However I don't accept your point that it makes a material difference to the vote as you can see that the leading vendors received 49 votes each... even if each vendor had voted for themselves, it still would not have made that much of a difference.

But there's no need to underplay the possible impact of vendors voting for themselves.
In a purely theoretical and worst case scenario, a vendor could have given himself 11 votes, that is a huge difference in a 49 vote total.
Also, not all vendors are one man teams.
And further, a single vote in the wild oud vote could have meant the difference between Gold and Silver.


1. Some vendors give out a lot of free samples that do not result in sales. Given that only people who have tried an oud can vote for it, a vendor giving out samples like it’s Christmas has an advantage which is not due to sales, but in effect, lobbying over the year. Of course, I am not saying it is intentional lobbying, but it has the same effect nonetheless. Is it fair for a vendor to garner votes that have been picked up from giving out free samples intsead of actually making a genuine sale? It is debatable.

I think that's just the nature of the game.

3. I am sure - no, I know - that certain people vote politically. I’m referring to the customers of a vendor not on this forum who came over and voted for him en masse even though they hardly post on this forum anymore

If I recall, I believe I read in last years's rules that there was a minimum post limitation to vote and a minimum period of membership limitation as well. Exactly to curtail the point you mention above.
I'm gonna guess this again has technical limitations or involves greater time investment.

5. There is nothing to stop a vendor from lobbying their friends on the forum to vote and sending a sample to them to confirm with the rules or even asking their relatives to join and vote. It’s not in the spirit of the vote, but it’s something that can and probably does happen. Can’t be stopped I’m afraid.

I am under no illusions...

Now for my most important point. The vote is unparalleled in the Oud world for its size and scope and running activities like this takes a lot of my personal time. We are looking for more moderators to join our staff so as you take a keen interest in forum affairs and regulation matters in general, I am inviting you to join up as a moderator and have a say in things. You could end up running next year's vote for Oud of the Year 2019! PM me if you are interested.

Yes, this vote is unique and good fun.

I was actually considering limiting the time I spend on oud.
But if you're in need of hands to help in the interim, I will give it thought.
 

Ouddict

Ouddict Co-Founder & Tech Support
Good point about the technical limitations, no doubt they can hinder ideal setups.
And you brought up quite a few other good points, thank you for addressing them.



But there's no need to underplay the possible impact of vendors voting for themselves.
In a purely theoretical and worst case scenario, a vendor could have given himself 11 votes, that is a huge difference in a 49 vote total.
Also, not all vendors are one man teams.
And further, a single vote in the wild oud vote could have meant the difference between Gold and Silver.




I think that's just the nature of the game.



If I recall, I believe I read in last years's rules that there was a minimum post limitation to vote and a minimum period of membership limitation as well. Exactly to curtail the point you mention above.
I'm gonna guess this again has technical limitations or involves greater time investment.



I am under no illusions...



Yes, this vote is unique and good fun.

I was actually considering limiting the time I spend on oud.
But if you're in need of hands to help in the interim, I will give it thought.

You’re hired! I’ll WhatsApp you. :Cooler:
 
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