It is undeniably the era of the geek. With the Internet playing such a pivotal role in the way we understand and interact with the world today, it’s only fair that the geeks that made it all happen get their fair share of celebrity treatment.
And Newsweek in collaboration with the Daily Beast have gone ahead and done just that. Modeled on the style of the Oscars, they have released a series of digital ‘power lists’ that seek to honor the geeks who spent endless hours coding programs, raising funds, evangelizing, creating and innovating to make the Internet what it is today. And the manner in which they have chosen their winners is also very ‘Academy Awards’ style.
The site describes its methodology in the following manner:
To honor these digerati, we took a cue from that Tinseltown institution–the Oscars–and let peers nominate and vote for their fellows for outstanding performances in their individual digital fields. We call it The Newsweek Daily Beast Digital Power Index, our first-ever collection of the 100 most significant players in 10 fields across the rapidly-expanding digital universe. And taking another cue from the Academy, we’ve also named our own Life Achievement Award winners.
There are ten lists (And you thought the Internet was a simple structure? hah!) that honour visionaries, innovators, evangelists, angels, personalities, virologists, navigators, opinionists, builders and revolutionaries.
The winners include Jeffrey Bezos, CEO, Amazon who topped the visionary list, Julian Assange who topped the revolutionaries list and Google co-founder Sergey Brin who topped the innovators list. Steve Jobs, Bill Gates and Tim Berners Lee who is credited with inventing the web were given lifetime achievement awards. A number of bloggers such as Perez Hilton, Andrew Breitbart and Andrew Sullivan also make it on to the list. (You can see the full lists here)
Other noteworthy entrants on the lists include the founder of Internet viral site 4Chan, Chris Poole, Ariana Huffington and Matt Drudge of the Drudge report.
The ‘panelists of peers’ are as noteworthy as some of the people who made it on to the lists. They include personalities like Guy Kawasaki, Mozilla tech evangelist Robert Nyman and CEO of Cheezburger, Ben Huh.
Apart from the honor, The Daily Beast remains ominously silent on whether the ‘power list’ will get any golden statuettes of little men (Or little computers as the case may be).