Before I start I would like to say Iâm not so much going after the world snow awards Iâm just using them as an example of why these types of awards are meaningless.
Most awards are created by one of two means, A public or private vote.
Both of these are basically the same with a few exceptions.
The private vote has a smaller but more informed voting base and is probably dependent on who the ski experts are exposed to the most. If the experts are sponsored by or spent most of their time in Val dâisere you can guarantee that is who they will vote for.
The public vote isnât much better. In the age of the internet a public vote is increasingly popular but has its drawbacks. Unless the outreach of the website has a significant and varied subscription the resulting numbers of votes is not viable. Secondly many internet votes allow multiple votes to be cast by one person in exchange for sharing and liking on social media.
The categories in the public vote are also vague, for example Best Chalet company should instead read Most popular chalet company or alternatively "Chalet company that has the best marketing depts in order to get their past clients to vote", not so snappy.
Best UK Snowsports Tour Operator should instead be titled "UK tour operator I used last year". As the majority of the public take only one ski holiday a year so itâs likely they would vote for whoever they last stayed with. The same could be said for resorts and ski schools.
Then there are shortlists that make no sense. The best safety equipment manufacturer category consisted of 2 clothing manufacturers, a binding manufacturer, a ski manufacturer, an avalanche transceiver company and a body armor company. Whoâs for comparing apple shaped skis with Orange colored snowboards? And the winner? A clothing company with no apparent "safety" equipment (unless you count jackets and pants) on their website.
I could go on but I think you get the rough idea.
So why all the apparent bitterness?
Despite the fact there wasnât a category for most awesome skibum name Alex from a French resort beginning with C and ending in Courchevel.
No! I see people using these awards as some sort of validation when all they are really good for is weighing down papers on their desk and giving them something to look at as they drink from their "world greatest ski brand mug".