So, I’m very excited to announce that I’ll be heading up the Judging Panel for the UK Dating Awards!
It’s a project I’ve actually been involved with now for a couple of months, however the website went live this weekend, which means I can finally tell you all about it! I’ve already had lots of questions about the Awards, and the actual Event, so I thought I’d write a quick blog post to answer some of the most commonly asked questions.
One of the things I’ve noticed the British Dating Industry lacks is any form of official body. No Michelin Stars of Dating!
With new companies, events, websites and apps springing up every day, it can be hard as a dater to pick out the best options, which is why I’m so excited about the UK Dating Awards.
The Awards are designed to be a completely impartial body, acting in the interests of the British Dating public, to recognise the very best dating services and products available, and showcase some of the upcoming newcomers. At the same time, Dating Blogs, Bloggers, Journalists, and Dating Experts will all be recognised for their services to Dating!
There are 30 Different Awards ranging from Best Dating Site, and Best Dating App to Most Original Dating Event, Best Dating Guru, and Best Dating TV Show. And there’s even a very special award for Safer Dating Campaigns, to recognise companies not necessarily directly related to dating. You can check out the full list HERE!
Whilst I would love for 30 Dates to be in the running for Best Dating Blog 2014 (which it obviously can’t now I’m a judge!), I’m really proud to be able call myself Head Judge at such a prestigious national awards, in an industry I love!
And as a judge, I really hope the Awards do end up recognising the very best of all the different areas of the UK Dating Industry.
The event itself will take place at the prestigious HAC in London in November, and will be hosted by former T4, Tool Academy and Made in Chelsea presenter Rick Edwards.
As a Dating Industry, we’re in a position to develop the Awards into an annual event, where each year we can all use the night to network with other companies, journalists and bloggers, and celebrate all the achievements of UK Dating Sites, Apps, the Media, and Expert Individuals.
Plus, I’m so excited about the idea of getting all dolled up, and having a Dating Industry form of the Oscars! I might even take a date … 😉
There’ll be press and celebrities and a red carpet, and the plan is to make it a once-in-a-year extravaganza of dating!
As a judge, I love the fact that the rest of the Panel are all single. I think helps us appreciate just how important it is to award the best events, sites, apps and services. As bona fide daters, we want the companies and individuals that do things well to be recognised – and I’m hoping it will also be a lot of fun trying everything out during the judging!
We’re also hoping to invite a member of the Online Dating Association Board of Directors onto the Judging Panel, to increase the accountability of the awards, and ensure they are a fair and dependable measure of the UK Dating Industry.
With that in mind – Nominations have begun! So if you work in Dating, or you blog or write about Dating, then head to the site and nominate yourself or your company. And if there’s a company you love, or a dating site you think needs recognition, get in touch and tell them you think they deserve a nomination!
Nominations are set up so that the company or individual has to nominate themselves. I know sometimes people find that funny, but that way we know the company or individual wants to be recognised by that award. It’s a standard approach to most Industry Awards these days, and doesn’t take anything away from the actual prestige of winning, because you still have to get through two rounds of judging, and in some case, a national poll!
In order to cover the organisation of the event and the coordination of the nominations, and judging, all applicants have to pay an admin fee – but this is tiered, so that individuals pay less than large companies – to allow everyone to be involved in the Awards. Hopefully even the smallest of blog, and non-profit blogger should be afford entry into the Awards, and be able to get recognition for their efforts in an awards ceremony in front of 300 people!
None of the judges are being paid to judge the awards – it’s a team of volunteers all keen to see UK Dating celebrated in a fair and fun way.
All nominees will be listed on the UK Daters Directory – a new platform to celebrate all areas of the British Dating industry, and everyone gets the funky lips logo to add to their website, saying what award they’ve been Nominated for, or Shortlisted for, or fingers crossed – which Award they won!!! You can check out my cool Official Judge badge in the 30 Dates sidebar!
Five of the thirty Awards will be voted for by the general British public, including the coveted Daters’ Favourite Website! So even if you don’t run a company or blog or write about dating, you can get involved and have your say! And if you’re not affiliated with someone who can enter the awards, but would like to be involved, then get in touch because there are still spaces on the Judging Panel – check the website for details!
Ideally we want as many companies and individuals to be nominated, so the Shortlist and Winners are a true representation of the very best of the UK Dating Industry. Plus competition makes people up their game, so hopefully the Awards will encourage companies to excel and really provide UK Daters with the best possible service and products!
The more companies and individuals that get involved, the more opportunities to network, and truly turn UK Dating into one big, accountable, community!
So please spread the word, and let’s all make the UKDA 2014 the most fun, fair, and deserving Awards Ceremony possible – and something to add to our social calendars year after year after year! It would be great if in years to come, the crimson lips are recognised as an indication that you can trust the website you’re using, or the advice of a dating expert 🙂
Bring on the party!
Miss Twenty-Nine xxx