Another artist is not happy with how Billboard makes decisions.
In April, Billboard removed Atlanta rapper Lil Nas X’s sang “Old Town Road” from its country charts, sparking outrage from fans. The song was deemed to be not country enough.
This time the controversy is over sales, or more specific, bundled sales. Bundled sales are when a song download or CD is tacked onto another purchase, like a concert ticket or T-shirt.
Bundles have propelled many artists to the top of the charts, and the No. 1 position tends to go back and forth between artists with huge streaming numbers — like Drake or Post Malone — and those offering bundles, the New York Times reported.
And now bundling is causing serious controversy. A couple of weeks ago, DJ Khaled’s “Father of Asahd” and Tyler, the Creator’s “IGOR” had nearly equal numbers for streaming on the Billboard 200. The Times reported that the top spot came down to the validity of the artists’ bundles, which led to “Father of Asahd” dropping to No. 2.
Tyler offered clothing, while Khaled’s album was tied to the sales of energy drinks through Shop.com.
Billboard decided Tyler’s bundles were OK, but Khaled’s were not, because the items, sold by Shop.com and its parent company Market America, promoted the bulk sales of the merchandise online.
“In this particular instance, we saw an organization encouraging purchases among their members by promising them material and organizational benefits.” Deanna Brown, the president of the Billboard-Hollywood Reporter Media Group, said in a statement.
Now, Page Six reports that DJ Khaled might sue Billboard over the disqualification of nearly 100,000 sales. According to Page Six, the artist’s lawyers “have fired off a letter to Silvio Pietroluongo, SVP of charts and data development at Billboard.”
Khaled’s “Father of Asahd” is currently at No. 3 on the Billboard 200, having peaked at No. 1 last week. “IGOR” is currently No. 6, after falling from No. 1 to No. 3 last week.
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