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BILLBOARD: THE SHITSHOW CONTINUES

In the wake of the raging controversy over the latest chart battle, Billboard issued this statement on 12/4:

The results of the Billboard 200 chart dated Dec. 8, which was announced on Sunday (Dec. 2), are being audited by Nielsen Music due to a processing discrepancy. Upon completion of the in-depth audit of data sources across streaming and retail, Billboard will announce any resulting changes that may affect chart rankings.

This on the heels of an email from Drew Bennett at Nielsen (about which we wrote previously) noting they’d gotten the chart wrong in the first place and would award the #1 spot to 6ix9ine. ”Our team is working quickly to identify the root cause of this discrepancy,” Bennett wrote, “to ensure that we get it right the first time."

And so the shitshow continues.

Insiders at Create, distributor of 6ix9ine’s Dummy Boy, say their numbers bear out that 6ix9ine had the #1 album and are pressing the Bible to revise its chart. It’s believed that just a few hundred units separate Dummy Boy from Travis Scott’s ASTROWORLD.

Word has it that SoundCloud reported late, and the streams that would’ve gone to 6ix9ine were disallowed by BB. Now there are rumors of pending lawsuits from both sides. 

This particular chart fight was a David and Goliath battle, as L.A.-based Create goes up against Sony-distribbed Scott. In fact, it’s Goliath plus Zeus, given that Scott is managed by Irving Azoff.

With Howard Appelbaum having exited Nielsen, there are no more adults left to oversee the mess—or show their work in tabulating the charts—and chart maven Silvio Pietroluongo and company find themselves flailing as outrage grows among all parties. With ticket and merch bundles becoming ever more prevalent, the Bible’s Top 200 is more a measure of T-shirt sales (which happened to make up more than 1/3 of Scott’s total) than a meaningful index of marketplace impact.

The Bible bunch appear to be hoping to make this “audit” last long enough to cause biz watchers to lose interest. Fat chance.

But regardless of the outcome, it’s clear that the arrogant bumbling instituted by John Amato continues without him, and Billboard has become a laughingstock. Rumors abound that wholesale firings at the Bible are imminent and yet another management team will soon be brought in to oversee a new chapter in the company’s slide into irrelevance. It’s said that the difference between the Bible and the Titanic is that the latter had a better band.

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