The Pegasus Awards

Governing Rules of the Pegasus Awards

  1. Filk Community Definition
  2. Nominating and Voting Process
  3. The Awards
  4. Recipient Eligibility Requirements
  5. Role of OVFF


The Pegasus Awards (Peggy, Peggys) were founded in 1984 to recognize and honor excellence in filking. The awards are granted annually at the Ohio Valley Filk Fest (OVFF) and administered by the OVFF Pegasus Committee.

Anyone with an interest in filk can nominate and vote for songs or individuals for the awards. You do not need to be a member of the convention (OVFF) to be involved in the nomination and voting process.

Awards are granted in six categories: Best Song, Best Performer, Best Writer/Composer, Best Classic Song, and 2 topical categories that vary from year to year.

An opinion poll from shortly after OVFF (October/November each year) to help interested filkers brainstorm ideas for the Nominating Ballot. The Nominating Ballot is active during the late spring and summer. The Final Ballot is active from the early Fall to OVFF. The entire process is administered by the Pegasus Committee, under the auspices of the OVFF convention committee.


  1. Filk Community Definition
    1. In order to participate in voting for the Pegasus Awards, you must be a member of the filk community.
    2. To be eligible to receive a Pegasus Award, a Nominee (or at least one composer of a collaborative work) must be (or have been) a member of the filk community.
    3. Anyone who exhibits an interest in the filk community can be considered a filker.

      Exhibiting interest can be shown by, but is not limited to:

      • Filking at sf/fantasy conventions
      • Attending filk conventions
      • Attending house sings
      • Participating in online boards/discussions/mail lists/webrings pertaining to filk
      • Discussing filk and filk related issues with other filkers

  2. Nominating and Voting Process
    1. You do not need to be a member of OVFF to participate in the poll, nominate, or vote for award recipients.

    2. Nominating and Final Ballots are considered privileged information. Information submitted on the ballots is only reviewed by OVFF and not shared with any other person or organization.

    3. Brainstorming Poll: OVFF will poll attendees of filk conventions for their Pegasus ideas on an annual basis from October to the end of April of each year (roughly, OVFF through FilKONtario). OVFF will then publish the results of this poll together with the Nominating Ballot by the end of May each year (see Section D, below). This poll and the resulting lists of ideas are meant as a tool to help interested filkers complete the Nominating Ballot. It is not a pre-selection tool for the Pegasus, you are free to nominate filkers who do not appear on the lists.
      1. There is no limit to the number of polls filker may submit.
      2. The complete poll results will be posted on the Pegasus website.
      3. There is no guarantee of accuracy in the Poll results
        1. Song titles, composers, and spelling can be 'organic'
        2. While an effort is made to filter them out, songs and artists that are not eligible for a Pegasus Award may appear on the lists. As they are identified, they will be removed

    4. Nominating Ballot: The Nominating Ballot will be released online latest by Memorial Day each year (the last Monday in May, for those not in the USA).
      1. The Nominating Ballot will be in effect until the end of July each year.
      2. Nominations may be submitted online at, or at selected conventions directly to Pegasus Committee members.
      3. Filkers may submit only one Nominating Ballot
      4. Online ballots must have a good first/last name and email address in order to be valid.
      5. The purpose of the Nominating process is to poll members of the filk community for their independent opinions of each category. Strong evidence of block voting can invalidate nominations.
      6. The Pegasus Committee reserves the right to judge and reject invalid nominations.
      7. The Pegasus Committee will contact potential Nominees to determine if they accept Nomination; and to work out details of their Nomination (see IV).
      8. Nominees (or their representatives) who are in the filk community have the opportunity to decline Nomination.
      9. In the case of a colloberative work being nominated, all Nominees (or their representatives) must accept the nomination in order to be placed on the Final Ballot.
      10. Nominees will be announced online on or before Labor Day each year.
      11. A certificate suitable for framing is sent to each Nominee.

    5. Final Ballot: The Final Ballot will be released on or before Labor Day Weekend (the first Monday in September).
      1. The Final Ballot will be in effect until shortly before OVFF.
      2. Ballots are submitted online at
      3. Filkers may submit only one Final Ballot.
      4. The Final Ballot is re-opened after the Pegasus Awards concert at OVFF. Attendees of OVFF will have the opportunity to vote at the convention until shortly after the Pegasus Awards Concert.
      5. Online ballots must have the legal name of the submitter, and a working email address in order to be valid.
      6. OVFF and The Pegasus Committee reserve the right to reject invalid ballots.

    6. Presentation of the Award: The Awards are presented at the Saturday night banquet at OVFF each year, or at a time that is determined by OVFF Programming.
      1. The Award consists of something suitable for the dusting shelf, and a certificate suitable for framing
      2. Award Winners in attendance when the Awards are presented are given an opportunity to speak

  3. The Awards
    1. All Pegasus Awards are of equal honor. Winning a Pegasus is hard, people!

    2. Award Categories
      1. Best Filk Song
        • There is no time limit to nominate these songs- they can be as old as they need to be for people to remember them to Nominate.
      2. Best Classic Filk Song
        • Any filk song that is at least 10 years old is eligible.
        • Recipients should be songs that have entered filk community public consciousness, like the song 'Banned From Argo'.
      3. Best Performer
        • Any member of the filk community is eligible.
      4. Best Writer/Composer
        • Any member of the filk community is eligible.
      5. Floating Categories
        • OVFF will select two rotating song categories each year. The categories may occasionally repeat over the years.
        • There is no time limit on these filk songs- they can be as old as they need to be for people to remember them to Nominate.

  4. Recipient Eligibility Requirements
    1. To be eligible, a Nominee must be considered to be (or has been) a member of the filk community (filker) (see I).

    2. Contacting Nominees and Sound Recording requirements
      1. A representative of the Pegasus Committee will contact each potential Nominee
      2. The potential Nominee must accept Nomination in order to appear on the Final Ballot and be considered a full Nominee.
      3. The potential Nominee must submit a sound recording on any media (digital is preferred, but hey, we'll take cassette tape, minidisc, vinyl, Edison cylinder... anything we can reproduce sound with... ) (ok, maybe not Edison cylinder....) (that is, unless someone wants to donate an Edison cylinder player to us...) to the Pegasus Committee for purposes of distribution. If the potential Nominee refuses to submit a recording, it will be considered the same as declining Nomination. (No, realli- an Edison cylinder player once kissed my sister...)
        1. In the event a recording does not exist, the Pegasus Committee will make a reasonable effort to aid the Nominee in getting a recording created (finding a local recording source, or identifying an artist to record it- in essence, whatever it takes as long as the composer agrees to distribution).
        2. Only a sample of the song (1-2 minutes) will be linked on the website; not the entire piece.
        3. Sound files are only maintained online for the current Awards year.
        4. OVFF reserves the right to distribute the entire piece to specific performers to serve as a learning aid for the Pegasus Award Concert held at OVFF.
        5. The following sound recordings are required:
          • All nominated songs
          • Representative works by Best Performer and Best Writer/Composer Nominees (see clause f below)
        6. This requirement is waived in cases where fulfilling it would violate U.S. law.
          • In the case of parodies, a copy of the lyric for posting on the Pegasus website is required in lieu of a recording.
          • If both melody and lyric cannot be legally distributed for the limited period of the Final Ballot, that song has been considered to be declined and the next candidate will be contacted.
        7. Representative Works
          1. In the Best Performer and Best Writer/Composer categories, a representative work must be submitted
          2. The representative work is the choice of the Nominee. It can be a work that nominated for a Pegasus Award that year, a work that has won in the past, or another work of their choice.
          3. Best Performer Nominees must submit a work of their own performance, though not necessarily of their composition. Live recordings are preferred, but not required.
          4. Best Writer/Composer Nominees must submit a work that they have composed, though not necessarily of their own performance.
        8. OVFF will only actively distribute recordings during the Final Ballot phase of voting, though links on the website may stay live for far longer.
      4. OVFF will request permission to permanently post a copy of the lyrics of nominated songs on their website ( Since this is a permanent request, posting lyrics is not a requirement of Nomination.

    3. Frequency of the Pegasus Award and Nominations
      1. Songs
        1. A song may only appear in one category in any year
        2. A song may only win one Pegasus Award. It is removed from eligibility once it has won.
        3. The Song "2 on, 1 off" rule:
          1. If a song has been Nominated 2 consecutive years in the same category, it is not eligible a third consecutive year in that category. It is eligible again after one year off the ballot.
          2. If a song has been Nominated 2 consecutive years in the same category, and is Nominated the third year in a floating category (or any mix thereof), it will appear on the ballot; and then be removed from Pegasus eligibility in the following (4th) year.
          3. For the purposes of this rule, Floating Categories are considered as one category. (So, if a song is Nominated in one floating category one year, and a different floating category the next year, it can only appear in Best Song or Best Classic Song in the third year before having one year off).
          4. In no case will a song appear on the ballot for more than three years in a row.
      2. Performers and Writer/Composers
        1. An artist may not appear in more than 2 categories in any single year.
          • An artist could have a song in a Song category (Best Filk Song, Best Classic Filk Song, etc), and be nominated as either a Performer or Writer/Composer in a given year;
          • or the artist could be nominated in both Writer/Composer and Performer categories, etc).
        2. When an artist has been awarded a Best Performer or Best Writer/Composer Pegasus Award, they are removed from eligibility for five years in the category they have won
        3. The Artist "2 on, 1 off" rule:
          1. If a person has been Nominated 2 consecutive years in the same category, they are not eligible for a third consecutive year in that category. They are eligible again after one year off the ballot.
          2. If a person has been Nominated two years as a Writer/Composer, and a third year as a Performer (or any mix thereof), they are not eligible in the 4th year in either Writer/Composer or Performer categories. They are eligible again in both categories after a year off.
      3. Posthumous awards
        1. Songs: Any filk song is eligible for a Pegasus as long as it has not won an Award. If the composer has passed away, their songs are still eligible.
        2. Writer/Composer and Performer Awards: Since the intent of the award is to honor current work, a person is eligible to be nominated posthumously for Writer/Composer or Performer only in the first Balloting after their passing.

  5. Role of OVFF and the Pegasus Committee
    1. The Ohio Valley Filk Fest (or OVFF) owns the Pegasus Awards.

    2. OVFF is responsible for:
      1. The appointment of one or more Evangelistas who take responsibility for, and select the members of, the Pegasus Committee. An Evangelista can create an additional Evangelista for the purposes of administering the Award.
      2. Selection of the annual floating categories
      3. Final approval of the Nomination Ballot voting
      4. Final approval of the Final Ballot voting

    3. The Pegasus Committee is responsible for:
      1. All operations (including daily operations, candidate/song eligibility, and balloting methods)
      2. Conducting all polling and voting
      3. The Pegasus Awards Concert at OVFF each year
      4. Maintenance of the Pegasus website
      5. Promoting and discussing the Award within the general community
      6. Other activities that the writer of this document has failed to think of right now

    4. OVFF and the Pegasus Committee reserve the right to break all ties in voting.

    5. OVFF and the Pegasus Committee reserve the right to amend or modify these Rules as needed to see to the efficient and respectful administration of the Pegasus Awards.

    6. Any inconsistency in applying these Rules does not invalidate the Final Ballot, nor does it invalidate these Rules. It merely implies fallibility of allowing something to slip by on the part of those administering the Award. Hey, it's complicated, people!! And remember, it's just a fan award!! :)
Respectfully Submitted:

Erica Neely and Steven Macdonald, Pegasus Evangelistas
31 October 2020


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