Political Film Society - Rule of Procedure


Rules of Procedure of The Political Film Society


 

Rule 1. Abbreviations
a. The term "Society" in these By-Laws refers to "Political Film Society."
b. The term "Board" in these By-Laws refers to "Board of Directors of the Political Film Society."
c. The term "feature-length motion picture" is a film over thirty minutes in running time.
d. The term "raising political consciousness" is defined as a successful effort to identify how individuals and groups vary in regard to levels of influence and power and thus receive greater or fewer public rewards, especially prevail in conflict situations.

Rule 2. Purposes
a. The main purpose of the Political Film Society is to raise the political consciousness of the filmviewing public.
b. The Society seeks to raise the political consciousness of the filmviewing public by giving annual awards to outstanding achievements of film directors, by providing publications on the politics of film, and by assisting individuals who seek to promote political consciousness raising through film.
c. The Political Film Society is a non-profit organization that takes no stands on political issues, endorses no candidates, engages in no lobbying of government officeholders, and otherwise operates as a tax-exempt organization within the meaning of Internal Revenue Service regulations.

Rule 3. The Awards Year
a. Political Film Society awards of merit shall be bestowed for achievements in connection with feature-length motion pictures first publicly exhibited for paid admission (previews excluded) in a commercial motion picture theater in the County of Los Angeles between January 1 and December 31 of each calendar year, such exhibition being for a consecutive run of not less than three days after an opening prior to midnight of December 31st, following normal exploitation and advertising utilized by the producer for the motion picture within the dates specified.
b. Pictures publicly exhibited elsewhere prior to their exhibition in the County of Los Angeles shall not be eligible unless such exhibition has occurred after January 1 in a given year in a commercial motion picture theater (film festivals excluded).
c. Exceptions to Rules 3a and 3b appear in Special Rules for Film Festivals (see Rule 5) and Honorific Awards (see Rule 6).
d. Television exhibition does not disqualify a motion picture from an award, provide such exhibition occurs after its theatrical release.
e. Documentary films are excluded from consideration for feature film awards.

Rule 4. The Annual Awards
a. Awards of Merit shall be conferred on motion pictures that raise the political consciousness of the viewing public. Awards of Merit shall be conferred upon motion pictures with the following achievements:
(1) DEMOCRACY: For the film that most effectively portrays the way in which ordinary people have a right to choose public policies and can bring about political change by making officeholders accountable to the people.
(2) EXPOSÉ: For the film that most effectively brings previously obscured truths about the political process to the attention of the public, showing for example how offices of public trust are used for private purposes.
(3) HUMAN RIGHTS: For the film that most effectively demonstrates how governments or quasigovernmental groups have violated or promoted the values in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
(4) PEACE: For the film that most convincingly demonstrates the folly of political violence as a means for resolving conflict and/or shows the superiority of nonviolent political conflict resolution.
b. Awards in other categories may be established from time to time by the Board.

Rule 5. Film Festivals
a. Festivals, in which particular films are viewed on just one or two occasions, shall be considered as a whole for purposes of Awards of Merit.
b. Films at a film festival that best raise political consciousness shall be given a Special Award without regard to the above categories, though these criteria may be taken into consideration.
c. Eligible films at film festivals shall include short subjects as well as feature films and documentaries.
d. The Board shall decide which film festivals, if any, shall quality for an Award of Merit.
e. The procedures for nomination and selection shall be similar to other awards, as stated in Rules 7-10.

Rule 6. Honorific Awards
a. Special Awards named after particular individuals are authorized under these Rules.
b. Such honorific awards shall be subject to the following conditions:
(1) The criteria shall be consistent with the purposes of the Political Film Society.
(2) The Board shall determine recipients of the honorific awards.
(3) The funds to be allocated to winners of the awards shall be drawn from interest accruing from a contribution of not less than $100,000.
(4) The awards shall not be voted posthumously.

Rule 7. General Rules
a. Balloting on all awards shall be restricted to members of the Political Film Society in good standing.
b. Voting for nominations and awards shall be by either email or snailmail. In both cases, members in good standing must identify themselves by email address or name and address, respectively, in order to qualify to vote.
c. Ballots shall be opened and counted by the Board.
d. Directors of each nominated film shall be notified of the decision to place the film in nomination for an award. An achievement submitted for award consideration may be withdrawn by the Director or the agent of the Director no later than January 31 of the year in which the award is to be made.
e. In the event that an achievement voted an award was done in equal collaboration by two or more persons, each of the collaborators shall receive an award.
f. The tabulation of all ballots shall be counting the number of yeas and nays cast. The Board can vote to break a tie.
g. No write-in votes shall be counted.
h. Subject to special rules approved by the Board, eligibility for consideration for awards shall be limited to motion pictures that have met the requirements of Rule 3 and for which the following information has been obtained by the Political Film Society, unless such limitations are waived by the Board:
(1) full, complete and authentic credits regarding the name(s) of the Directors of the film,
(2) the name of the theater in which the film played for the first time, and
(3) the dates of the first commercial week of the film.
i. The Board shall provide for such meetings or special showings as may be desirable to ensure a full and fair consideration of the merits of all eligible achievements.
j. Motion pictures from all countries shall be eligible for consideration for the awards.
k. The alteration of an achievement by changing a film from the version shown outside the County of Los Angeles, upon which eligibility is based, shall subject such achievement to the risk of being declared ineligible by the Board.
l. Nominated and pre-nominated films shall be placed on ballots in English alphabetical order.
m. Counting of nominations and final votes shall take place at a public meeting of the Board, which shall announce the winners promptly to Political Film Society members.

Rule 8. Pre-Nominations
a. Any member of the Political Film Society in good standing has the right to pre-nominate any film for an award by sending a pre-nomination letter, fax, or email to the Chief Executive Officer of the Society, stating the name of the film, the category for which the film is nominated, and the reason for the pre- nomination. Pre-nominations for any year may be done at any time up to December 31 of that year.
b. Films eligible for awards shall be determined by credits as they appear on the screen and/or as certified to the Society by the producers or producing companies, but final determination in any event shall be made by the Board.
c. All films pre-nominated shall be so noted in a newsletter published regularly by the Society. Reasons for the pre-nominations will be provided in the newsletter, subject to editing by the Chief Executive Officer, without attribution to the nominator.
d. In the event of any dispute concerning credits, the Board reserves the right to declare any achievement ineligible or, alternatively, to reject all claims to credit, list credits as being in controversy and without any award until the dispute is resolved.

Rule 9. Nominations
a. The Chief Executive Officer shall prepare a list of pre-nominated films for a particular year by January 1 of the following year.
b. Not more than five nominations shall be made for each award category. If there are more than five pre-nominations for a category, the Chief Executive Officer shall prepare a ballot consisting of a list of all pre-nominated films and circulate ballots to all members of the Society by January 5. Members will then vote to narrow the list of nominations to five. If there are fewer than five pre-nominations for a category, nominations will be considered closed.
c. Upon receipt of the list of pre-nominations, members of the Society shall mark ballots, giving the highest score to the film deemed to have the highest achievement in each category and shall return marked ballots to the Chief Executive Officer of the Society within three weeks (by January 31).
d. The Board shall meet no later than one week later (by February 7) to tabulate votes on pre-nominated films. When the five highest films have been determined for a category, nominations will be considered closed.
e. In the event that a pre-nominated film is declared ineligible by the Board, the disputed film shall be replaced by the nondisputed film that received the next highest number of votes in the nominations balloting, if time reasonably permits such substitution.
f. When the Board closes nominations for all categories, the Chief Executive Officer shall prepare ballots for final voting, listing each film alphabetically (using the English alphabet).

Rule 10. Selection of Awards
a. Members of the Society in good standing shall be eligible to vote on all ballots circulated by the Chief Executive Officer to select outstanding achievements in film.
b. All ballots from members to narrow pre-nominated films for a particular year to five shall be received by the Chief Executive Officer by February 1 of the year following.
c. All ballots from members to select award winners from nominated films for a particular year shall be received by the Chief Executive Officer by March 10 of the year following.
d. Winners in the final balloting shall be announced by the Board by March 15.

Rule 11. Membership
a. Members of the Political Film Society during 1997 shall be considered "original members."
b. New members may join the Political Film Society during 1998 or thereafter by paying a one-time assessment of US$5.00, payable to the "Political Film Society" and mailed to the Chief Executive Officer of the Society.
c. The Board of Directors may, at its discretion, award Honorary Memberships to persons who contribute substantial in-kind services to the Political Film Society for one year. Such memberships shall be subject to the same requirements as all other memberships for continuing memberships.
d. Original and new members may continue their membership in 1999 and thereafter free of charge if they supply email addresses or access the Society's internet website or listserv.
e. Original and new members who desire to continue their membership in 1999 and thereafter but do not subscribe to the Society's internet website or listserv can do so by paying annual assessments of US$5.00, payable to the "Political Film Society" and mailed to the Chief Executive Officer of the Society.
f. The assessments shall be handled in such a manner as to maximize the possibility that members can claim a tax deduction for their contributions within the framework of tax regulations.
g. Members are entitled to attend any meeting convened by the Board or the Chief Executive Officer of the Society. The Chief Executive Officer shall announce the dates, times, and venues of all meetings of the Board through a regularly published newsletter.
h. Members of the Society are entitled to vote at the annual meeting of the Society, but only Directors can vote at meetings of the Board.
i. Members in good standing are those who keep active email addresses or pay annual dues for fax or snailmail addresses.
j. Any member has the right to cancel membership in the Society at any time.

Rule 12. Board of Directors
a. A Board of Directors of three voting members shall be chosen each year at the annual meeting of the shareholders of the Political Film Society.
b. The Chief Executive Officer shall preside at meetings of the shareholders, of the Board and at annual meetings of the Society.
c. The Chief Executive Officer shall announce the dates, times, and venues of the meetings of the Society through a regularly published newsletter.
d. Members of the Board may select from among its members a convenor, who can act in the event that the Chief Executive Officer is unable to do so.
e. The Secretary of the Society shall keep minutes of all Board meetings, subject to approval by the Board, and shall circulate information about decisions made by the Board to the members through a regularly published newsletter.
f. The Board shall meet from time to time to discuss the business of the Society. The Board shall have the authority to form committees and to amend these Rules by majority vote.