Hacker Takes Advantage of Embarrassing SAG Awards Website Flaw

What happens when a Hollywood guild carelessly uploads embargoed information about its annual awards derby ahead of the big December 12 reveal? In the case of the Screen Actors Guild and the 2012 SAG Awards nominations, the result was a Twitter-fueled party poop.

A forums poster on Sasha Stone’s website awardsdaily.com, where users regularly try to figure out ways to “hack” advance awards info, discovered that a title-actor search yesterday at sagawards.org instantly confirmed whether the entity was part of this year’s nominations group. Faster than you can say Django without the “D,” full, accurate lists of the nominees were being passed around the Internet. The only saving grace for SAG is that the small, voracious group of film awards handicappers treated the information with necessary caution because it was all just a little too easy and too good to be true.

For goldderby.com owner Tom O’Neil, the repercussions were a little more severe. Many of his registered users jumped on the leaked info and as a result, O’Neil was forced to void this year’s guess-the-SAG-Awards-nominees portion of his ongoing competition.

“We suspected something stunk when we ended up with a flood of late prediction entries that got all or nearly all of the SAG predictions spot on,” O’Neil tells us. “We thought it was a problem with the timing on our services – cutting off the predictions window too late. But our admin clocks proved right. We were befuddled and frantically looking for other explanations when word broke about the list leaking out early.”

Pamela Greenwalt, a spokesperson for SAG-AFTRA, tells FishbowlLA: “We are aware of this matter. There appears to have been a technical glitch with the website uploading process and we are working with our vendor to resolve the problem.”

@hollywoodspin rhorgan@gmail.com Richard Horgan is co-editor of Fishbowl.
Publish date: December 12, 2012 https://dev.adweek.com/digital/2012-sag-awards-nominations-glitch-awardsdaily-sasha-stone-goldderby-tom-oneil/ © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT