Key dates on the path to the nominations
Oscar’s electronic voting debut wasn’t the disaster some had predicted — but it hasn’t been entirely smooth, either. Over the three-plus months since the Academy codified its digital plans, password problems and other hiccups forced the org to evolve its strategy. Here’s a timeline of events that led up to today’s 5 p.m. conclusion of e-voting:Tuesday, Sept. 18: The Acad announces what had been long anticipated: E-voting starts this awards cycle, with paper ballots available upon request. AMPAS also moves up the noms announcement to Jan. 10. Thursday, Nov. 29: Requests for paper ballots were supposed to be due today, but AMPAS extends the deadline by two weeks, acknowledging that some may not have understood the need to request one. Friday, Dec. 14: New deadline to apply for a paper ballot arrives … and the Academy again changes course, saying it will now mail one to every member not registered for online voting. Monday, Dec. 17: Voters cast ballots online for the first time. Reports of problems with passwords — sent via regular mail — trickle in, but AMPAS maintains that problems were limited to a few individuals. Monday, Dec. 17-Sunday, Dec. 30: Reports of password problems and other headaches persist, including docu director Morgan Spurlock, who tweets: “The password they sent didn’t work for my log-in — and they couldn’t email me a new log-in, only snail mail.” Monday, Dec. 31: With a few days left to vote for noms, AMPAS extends the deadline by one day to Friday, Jan. 5. The Acad says only that it is “providing every opportunity available to make the transition to online balloting as smooth as possible.” Wednesday, Jan. 2: Deadline for registering to vote online. Late registrants could get their password by calling a 24-hour support hotline. Thursday, Jan. 3: Original date for the close of noms voting. To accommodate the extension, the site is taken offline for two hours. Friday, Jan. 4: Nominations voting closes at 5 p.m.