Well...the appearance is that it is yes, possibly a contributing factor. Certainly the timing looks rather convincing. The fact that the contributions were directly affected - and being tallied up to vet for that first badge - also looks like a very convincing argument.
Are the contests for the badges the sole source? Likely, the answer is no. But the additional server loads - it is not known how much additional storage demands for all the collection files, etc, would be an added contributor, x the number of volunteers who participate. The effort to review all the profiles...and decide if the conditions were met also...may be there, yes.
The variance in video upload schedules and other factors say that there has been a good deal of effort by Kristie and the IT boffins to deal with some issues that may underlie the painful symptoms and outbreaks of novel and nasty new vikibugs. Continuing problems every time the spinner is changed, or a new fan channel to be bid on by CM's is put into the malevolent Project Finder...well...yes...you can forget even typing a PM sometimes at that point. Mysteriously watching one's work here appear and disappear? sigh.
I think...if this continues...my advice to my Teams and about work in progress...may change considerably. The most recent experience of trying to find a workaround and help people fight the tide really has given me some considerable thinking this morning that next time, if the leading edge of the black hole of the month's event horizon appears to be looming ahead of my Team...I may stop trying to find workarounds...and simply post the notice I ended up putting up yesterday, informing fans we are having some difficulties and bear with us. Sigh.
And advise my Team to just well, wait it out. Stop fighting it, as we cannot tell where we are in the process of the event itself. This morning, it is still not clear if we're out of the woods.
If this is a marathon...and indeed linked to the badge contests in a rather unfortunate way...we do ourselves no service by sprinting to exhaustion two badges in.
May the overlords reconsider this badge contest and give more consideration to the hard-working VOLUNTEERS from around the world.
Crunchy Dieter Donut just for you, Denisse
We are Mei Daxia. We choose to do the most difficult dramas well.