Televoting: All night or 10 minutes?

by Benny Royston 80 views

Reactions to Svante Stockselius's comments about the change in televoting patterns has been interesting and informative. What's the fuss about? Well, instead of having the traditional voting window after all countries have sung, the voting lines will open at the start of the show and will remain open throughout the performance of the entries. We have been following the debate in the reaction section with interest. It would be nice to move this debate forwards a little and invite some more reactions. So, what would the consequences be if the new 'all night long' voting procedure be if it is introduced to the Eurovision Song Contest in 2007?

Following Mr. Stockselius' comments to esctoday, some reactions accused the EBU of failing to listen to the fans and becoming too money orientated. Is this the real motivation, or could it be that they are investigating ways to improve the excitement and viewer participation in the competition? Is the EBU looking to increase funding so that broadcaster fees can be reduced, or in fact looking at ways to reduce the reliance on the 'Big Four countries' and thus levelling the playing field for all participants?

Many reactions focus on the likelihood that the change in the voting procedure would mean that there is a definite advantage in performing as near to the start of the show as possible. This is a reversal of the situation which until now has led many to argue (with has a strong statistical support) that the current system of voting gives an increasing advantage to countries nearer the end of the running order.

For years, many pundits and viewers alike have said that there the further down the list of performers you are, the more chance of winning you have. Statistically, in 51 years of the Eurovision Song Contest,17 winners have come from the first half of the draw, where as34 winnershave come from the second half.10 winnersHave come from the first five songs to perform,23 winnershave come from the last five songs.

Since the modern voting system was introduced in 1975, using juries rather than televoting at the time, 12 winners came from the first half of the draw, with 5 winners amongst the first five performed songs, where as 24 winners have come from the second half of the draw, and 15 (almost half the winners) have performed in the final five songs.

The two main reasons for this that people believe arethat firstly, voters are more likely to remember songs nearer to the end of the contest and forget the earlier songs, and secondly, many people arrive home or tune into the contest during the broadcast, and so miss the earlier songs.

People argue that it is wrong to vote on the songs before all of the songs have been heard. People may vote and later change their mind, but they would have to pay if they wanted to vote again.

Some have argued that the song performing at the beginning of the contest would have far more time to accumulate votes than the song performing last. This means that songs earlier in the draw have an unfair advantage over the songs appearing last in the draw.

Do you think that the new televoting system will provide a more balanced result, a different result to the existing voting window or make little difference to the overall outcome of the competition?

Do you like the existing system, the new system or do you think you have a better system that would provide a fair competition and a balanced outcome?

NB – the rules allow for a maximum 20 votes per phone number

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