From Reuters: YouTube has announced the winners of its first annual Video Awards, recognizing the best user-generated clips of 2006. Trophies were doled out in seven categories, and lucky winners included Chicago band OK Go's treadmill-tastic music video for Most Creative, Australian tearjerker (come on, we can't be the only ones who cried) "Free Hugs" for Most Inspirational, LA comedian brainchild "Ask a Ninja" for Best Series, ubiquitous college favorite "Smosh" for Best Comedy and animated "Kiwi" for Most Adorable Video. See the full list of winners and their videos here.
But whither Lonelygirl? While the psuedo-reality phenom was nominated in several categories, it walked away winless - no real surprise, given the anti-LG backlash that's permeated the site since the series' deluge of publicity last fall. Meanwhile, the New York Times weighs in with a decidedly gainsaying take on YouTube's decision to give awards in the first place, accusing the so-called "mellow Silicon Valley 'video-sharing site'" of sidling dangerously close to Hollywood politics and condemning the voting process as "almost certainly screwy." Hey, lighten up guys. It's not like they don't already do it for blogs.