Webby Awards Keep Acceptance Speeches Short and Sweet

Working with the Internet is like having a long-term relationship, according to Webby Awards founder Tiffany Shlain.

"You do foolish things, and you spend beyond your means, and you splurge," she said at the 10th annual award ceremony, dedicated to recognizing greatness on the World Wide Web, which was held earlier this week at the famed Downtown Cipriani restaurant in New York City.

Then the times get tough, Shlain continued, speaking of the bubble burst of 2000.

"When the bubble burst, it became the air we breathe," she finished.

Thus started the evening where Web sites of all shapes and sizes from around the world were recognized for their achievements.

Categories covered the topics of connections, features, living, marketplace, media, services and society, and within each category as many as 11 sub-categories existed.

Two awards were given in each sub-category, one decided by the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences and the other, called the People's Voice award, by up to 300,000 everyday Web users.

With 124 awards to present in one evening, award-show host Rob Corddry, of "Daily Show with Jon Stewart" fame, laid down some ground rules for acceptance speeches.

The most important rule: Speeches could not exceed five words.

With that in mind, we present to you the top 5 speeches and the next 5 runner-ups of the awards ceremony.

Top Five

"Discover digital objects and handles." — Dr. Robert Kahn, who received a special lifetime achievement award for co-developing the TCP/IP computer networking protocol that is the basis of the entire Internet. Kahn first presented his speech on a sign in binary code, then in hexadecimal code, before showing it in the more common Roman alphabet. He then suggested the phrase could start a "Da Vinci Code"-like fervor to understand its meaning, before going on to say the next revolution of the Internet would be in content management. He predicted that people would soon be able to carry around all of their personal desktop settings regardless of how or where they logged onto the Internet.

"Jewish American Princesses ... Smokin'.'" — JDate.com is a dating service that caters to Jewish singles looking for kosher love. The site, designed by Sparks Network, won the Webby award for best social-networking site.

"Sports? Pornography? Sports? Pornography? Sports!" — ESPN.com won the Webby Awards for best sports site under the entertainment category. The awards show also featured several members of the cast of Avenue Q, a Broadway show consisting of puppets, who performed a scene about how the Internet's main function is really to host pornography.

"Everything you think is true." — Prince was awarded a lifetime-achievement award for his Web site NPGMusicslub.com, on which he has released seven full-length albums that are not available anywhere else. The purple potentate of rock then gave a one-song performance that had everyone in Downtown Cipriani crowding the stage.

"Two crackers, fighting racism, yo," — RememberSegregation.org is a site constructed to recreate the era of racial segregation. Visitors first encounter a screen with two different areas to click on: one for "White Visitors" and the other for "Colored Visitors." Viewers then get to the site's main page, which features information on the history of segregation and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Top five runner-ups:

"I have a big ... pencil." — Big Ideas Come From Big Pencils.

"Darlings, make blogs, not war." — Huffington Post.

"More than just bare breasts." — Genographic Project, National Geographic.

"Liberals have mojo ... we win!" — Mother Jones. After this win was announced, Corddry asked the crowd if there were any conservatives in the audience at all. One person applauded.

"Make UNICEF obsolete ... help kids." — State of the World's Children 2006, UNICEF