At the 2006 Eurovision Song Contest, there was a major change to how the votes were announced! Instead of each country announcing their full voting card, the first 7 countries votes were shown briefly on screen, and the final three, winning 8, 10 and 12 points were then read out in the traditional way.
Much was made of this change at the time. The reason for the change was to speed up the voting process and to reduce the length of the show so that it could fit into a maximum 3 hour, 10 minute broadcast. Many people however felt that this reduced the impact of the show.
What do you, the readers of esctoday.com think?
ARGUMENTS FOR THE NEW PROCEDURE
Arguments in favour of this change point to it improving the time allocated to the songs and enabling more songs to participate if necessary. They also say that the competition should be about the performance of the songs rather than a lengthened and drawn out voting announcement.
Broadcasters are keen to reduce the possibilities of delays to the competition and the chance of it over-running it’s timeslot to protect their late Saturday programming schedule. There are problems with advertising, contractual obligations and delays to programming that can be problematic if the contest over-runs and later programs run late or have to be cancelled.
ARGUMENTS AGAINST THE NEW PROCEDURE
Arguments against the change say that it destroys the impact and excitement of the voting. It reduces the excitement because it tends to be the same few countries at the top each time, and the majority of countries do not hear their scores read out at all. This damages the excitement in the majority of countries participating and as a result, is likely to reduce interest in the competition.
Also, for countries that struggle to win many votes, it is all the more exciting to hear their country receive points. For example, Malta scored only a single point in 2006. The people of Malta would at least have been able to cheer that point as it was read out in the traditional voting procedure, however this time; many missed the fact that a point had been registered because it happened silently.
HAVE YOUR SAY
We are asking the readers of esctoday.com for their opinion in the reactions section below. What do you think about this change? Would you like it to continue, or revert back to the traditional results process where all countries read out their results in full?
Can you think of a better or more exciting way for the results to be announced? Do you think that all participating countries should be able to vote or should it only be the the countries that qualify for the final?