I see your point Sci, and while there are some bad fan produced stuff out there, there is some extremely good ones as well. Such as The Joker Blogs
which is probably my favourite Batman related fan produced project. The quality and dedication these guys have put into their work blows most everything else away. It would be one thing if it were crap being produced, but I have no problem if it is quality. It is rare yes, but quality stuff is there. I think your parameters are a little narrow minded to be honest. Perhaps your suggestion of a Fan Produced category should be something the Hugo committee or whoever is in charge should consider. Also didn't "Sanctuary" start as a fan series on the web? Look at "Red Vs Blue" as well. Lots of examples. Both original and fan projects. Anyway this type of discussion really belongs in it's own thread I think.
I still haven't seen the last two episodes either
Nobody is disputing the quality of some of the fan films. "World Enough and Time" is easily the best show the crew at New Voyages has done. You yourself cite the Joker Blogs. These are exceptions to the rule.
But there are guidelines for these awards considerations, and the advent and advancement of technologies allowing more people to make films and make them easily accessible is blurring the lines between amateur and professional quality filmmaking.
Would you expect the Joker Blogs to compete in an awards race up against The Dark Knight? Of course not. It's comparing apples and oranges.
Too, the element of intellectual property becomes more important in these proceedings. Fan films aren't supposed to generate income for their producers. What happens if their film wins prize money? It's one thing to get a trophy, but once there's money exchanging hands, don't you think the copyright holders are going to get involved?
I don't think it is narrow minded at all
to consider these items in a situation like this, no matter how good the fan film is.
As for Sanctuary
, it was a webseries produced at no cost in 2007 that SciFi picked up and expanded in to an actual television series. So no, it was not a fan series before becoming a TV show.