A Swede who lives in Finland and who is lost in Euroland - the wonderful world of Eurovision
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Tuesday, May 25, 2021

ESC 2021: I say it because I care


In a statement to Aftonbladet's Torbjörn Ek, the EBU has responded to the questions raised around Moldova's odd-looking results from the televoting in the second semi final. 

The EBU maintains all votes have been verified by their partners and that the result is valid and that there will be no further investigation of the matter. So that's that.

We don't really know what this means, of course. Maybe it is EBU speak that means they have no intention to discuss the matter further in public. Maybe they will still bring this onto the agenda for future editions.

Of course it is a bit embarrassing that the EBU partners don't discover what looks like a clear case of vote manipulation. They didn't notice anything wrong in 2013 either, until several newspapers published stories on attempted manipulation.

The EBU is the body that organises this contest. They write the rules and decide upon the interpretation of those very rules. It is their right not to investigate if they feel there is no reason to.

However, I am not sure that Estonian viewers for instance will feel particularly inclined to vote in the future if their votes don't matter and are open to be tampered with.

It is also possible that Denmark lost their place in the final if the Moldovan delegation manipulated the votes. I don't think it will be easier convincing singers and songwriters to go into competition if there is even the slightest suspicion you can get booted out in favour of someone paying their way in.

I remember the 90's, when a small group of countries kept swapping points between them, year after year. Nothing was ever investigated or proven back then either but a very quick look on the voting patterns is enough to smell a rat.

I love this old song contest but one of its major foundations - just as important as the entries if not more - is trust. Why should viewers and producers and songwriters and broadcasters invest time and money and effort in a contest where bending the rules is fine?

I think not addressing this situation is the wrong way to go. I don't say it to annoy anyone but because I care. 

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