Voting the Triple J’s Hottest 100 officially opened last week, and with it comes the latest stunt intended to troll the world’s biggest music poll.
In what feels like history repeating, there’s a serious campaign underway to see Justin Bieber top the Hottest 100 with the hashtag #bieber4hottest100 gaining traction online that is sure to raise the ire of our national youth broadcaster.
And it looks like plenty are getting behind the campaign including Bieber himself who tweeted his support and has received more than 15k retweets and 22k likes alone.
For those playing catch-up, last year’s countdown was somewhat overshadowed by a viral campaign launched by BuzzFeed to see pop superstar Taylor Swift’s hit ‘Shake It Off’ into the world’s biggest music poll.
The #tay4hottest100 campaign was a major point of controversy, with debate raging about whether or not Swift, an artist that has never been played on triple j, deserves a spot in the countdown if people vote for her.
But unlike Taylor Swift, Justin Bieber has in fact been played on Triple J. On 3rd April earlier this year Triple J spun ‘Where Are Ü Now’, the Grammy nominated collaboration with Diplo and Skrillex (Jack Ü) featuring the vocals of none other than Justin Bieber himself.
Diplo & Skrillex pres Jack U – Where Are You Now [22:31]
— triple j Plays (@triplejplays) April 3, 2015
But there are a few similarities that could put a swift end to the #bieber4hottest100 campaign.
Eventually, triple j simply disqualified Taylor Swift’s ‘Shake It Off’ from the countdown, stating that since the song was the subject of a campaign by a large media company and a KFC competition, votes cast for the track weren’t legitimate.
And much like how the Taylor Swift campaign, it appears #bieber4hottest100 isn’t exactly grassroots either.
The earliest reference we can find to the hashtag is a conversation between the writers at Buzzfeed who started the Taylor Swift controversy.
But it looks like rather than Buzzfeed, this time around it may actually be the sinister work of a gambling company in the latest attempt by the betting companies to latch onto the Hottest 100 in the lead up to the countdown in the greedy attempt to make money off of one of the nation’s most-loved traditions.
So will Justin Bieber really be disqualified? Probably.
Triple J have effectively enacted a ‘Taylor Swift clause’ for the forthcoming Hottest 100 that will ensure there won’t be any repeats of #tay4hottest100 or annoying imitators. As part of their 2015 voting rules, they’ve added some stipulations preventing voters from trolling the poll.
“Don’t troll the poll,” the first of the new rules states. “Votes made as part of a competition that promotes a song or artist, or a campaign that undermines the Hottest 100 may be disqualified or ignored.”
triple j stress they want the poll to be legit, adding, “We want genuine votes, from genuine listeners. If we feel something’s preventing that from happening, we’ll look into it for you and take appropriate action.”
Still, until Triple J says otherwise you can still vote for Justin Bieber to win the Hottest 100. Strangely enough you can also vote for Taylor Swift, this time via German band Milky Chance, whose Like a Version cover of ‘Shake It Off’ is eligible for the poll.
Voting is now open, so head on over to triple j’s official Hottest 100 portal to cast your votes now and don’t forget to leave a cold coin or two for this year’s official partner, AIME.
We’ve reached out to Triple J for comment but are yet to hear back.