The jury vote is always highly commented by the Eurovision fans. This year was no exception, but what made a huge impression was the big difference between the decisions of the experts and the public.
The re-incorporation of the jury vote came after years of “block” voting and its role was to keep it to the bare minimum, so that it would not affect the end results. However, as time passes by, we see that things are not the same anymore.
It could be said that there has always been inconsistencies between the one and the other. In the last years we witnessed a few winners, who were not the favourites of the viewers, who decided to vote either by SMS, call or app vote. Everyone remembers 2015, 2016 (the big scandal of the Russian jury) and this year’s edition. Last year Portugal’s win was unanimous, but we saw how some of the national juries did not give points to their main rivals – for example, the juries of Bulgaria and Portugal did not exchange a single point.
This year we also noticed some big differences between the jury and televote. Here are some key examples:
Austria – 271 points from the jury (1st place) and 71 points from the televote (13th place).
Sweden – 253 points from the jury (2nd place) and 21 points from the televote (23rd place).
Australia – 90 points from the jury (12th place) and 9 points from the televote (last place).
Czech Republic – 66 points from the jury (15th place) and 215 points from the televote (4th place).
Italy – 59 points from the jury (17th place) and 249 points from the televote (3rd place).
Denmark – 38 points from the jury (20th place) and 188 points from the televote (5ht place).
Ukraine – 11 points from the jury (last place) and 119 points from the televote (7th place).
Here comes the question what are the juries seeking exactly? Vocal capacities, staging, melody, lyrics, or perhaps a little bit from all of the above. And if it is so, then why do we have the following results that are significantly far from common sense and enter the conspiracy theory zone?
How come Ukraine deserved to be last according to them, but Sweden 2nd?
Why did they support Sweden, but not the Czech Republic?
Why France, but not Italy?
Why Israel, but not Finland?
A lot of questions, but no answers.
Before this year’s contest the EBU announced some slight changes in the jury voting, so that the jury members do not have the power to downvote on a participant. However, this change did not affect the voting ways of countries like Armenia, Azerbaijan, Lithuania, etc.
The behaviour of some of the countries is also illogical. Juries are being blamed that are punishing acts with no points in the final (with there being a massive difference in the semi-final), which is visible in the detailed voting results. The professionalism of the home country is being praised. The neighbour countries are getting blamed for the lack of support.
Mladen from Balkanika shared to a Serbian media that in their hotel they witnessed trading of jury points between some of the “serious” delegations. According to his words, all of the Serbian performers have been direct witnesses to that incident. If all of this is true, then don’t these actions actually shift the purpose of the jury voting and don’t they make it become in something that we have only thought as a conspiracy?
The faith people have in juries diminishes with each year, while the requirements to them have always been clear. There is no need to get them removed. On the contrary, they are necessary. But with the obvious goal to always stick to the professional choice, to be objective and unbiased towards the participants; these are important points that should be number one priority to them. Such chaotic results are normal for the public vote, because the casual viewers are inconsistent. For them it is understandable – panem et circenses. But not for people who are dedicated to music in different ways and must create a sense of professionalism.
What is your evaluation of the juries on the scale from Austria to Ukraine?