'House of Cards,' Frank Ocean top Webby Awards
FILE - This Jan. 29, 2013 file photo shows actor Kevin Spacey at the premiere of Netflix's first original series, "House of Cards," in Washington. Spacey and Dana Brunetti will be honored with a Webby Special Achievement Award for their role in creating and producing the groundbreaking series. The ceremony will available to view in HD on Watch.WebbyAwards.com on Wednesday, May 22, 2013. (Photo by Paul Morigi/Invision/AP, File)
NEW YORK (AP) — Netflix's groundbreaking "House of Cards" may be the first digital series nominated for a best drama Emmy. But it will start with a Webby.
The Webby Awards are honoring "House of Cards" producers Kevin Spacey and Dana Brunetti with a Webby special achievement award. The political thriller, for which Netflix released all 13 episodes at once, proved that digital media can produce cable-quality drama. Netflix also won for best streaming media site.
The 17th annual Webbys, which celebrate Internet achievement, are to be officially announced Tuesday. Winners range from Justin Bieber (for the social media campaign for his fragrance launch) to The Onion (now with a record 19 total Webbys) to Nate Silver's FiveThirtyEight blog for The New York Times.
The Webby person of the year is Frank Ocean, the R&B singer, whom the Webbys hailed "for proving the power of the Web as a medium for cultural change when he announced his bisexuality to his Tumblr community."
Singled out for outstanding comedic performance is Jerry Seinfeld, whose 10-episode Web series "Comedian in Cars Getting Coffee" showcased the "Seinfeld" star hanging out with comedian friends.
Webby categories are split into a regular award, chosen by the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences, and a "people's voice" award. The Australian rail safety public service campaign Dumb Ways to Die, which went viral, is an unlikely awards leader with seven Webbys.
FILE - This June 30, 2012 file photo shows comedian Jerry Seinfeld performing at the David Lynch Foundation: A Night of Comedy honoring George Shapiro in Beverly Hills, Calif. Seinfeld will receive a Webby for Outstanding Comedic Performance for his hit Web series "Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee." The 10-episode series, which chronicles the conversations between Seinfeld and his comedian friends, including Ricky Gervais, Alec Baldwin and Larry David, demonstrated the continued merging of Hollywood-style entertainment with the Internet. (Photo by John Shearer/Invision/AP, File)
GIF file inventor Steve Wilhite also will be honored with a lifetime achievement award. While working at CompuServe in the 1980s, Wilhite created the compressed 8-bit GIF (or Graphics Interchange Format) that remains a popular tool for lo-fi viral sharing.
Another special achievement award will go to President Barack Obama's election campaign for its use of technology in last year's presidential election. Claire Boucher, the Canadian synth-pop singer who performs under the name Grimes, is the Webby's artist of the year.
Other winners include HBO Go (four awards, including best media streaming service), Lady Gaga (for best celebrity-fan social presence), Conan O'Brien (for best celebrity-fan website) and The New York Times (best news social presence). A complete list of the awards will be posted later Tuesday at: http://Winners.WebbyAwards.com.