Friday, September 19, 2008


Eurovision Song Contest heads to Asia
Bettina Brinkmann of announces: "Having brought the European version of the Eurovision Song Contest to the Middle East and North Africa, we are now delighted that viewers across Asia will enjoy one of the best established entertainment shows in the world."

And it's not even April 1st. (Seriously - Middle East and North Africa! Was Morocco in it once?! Lebanon was banned and Turkey considers itself European... which leaves Israel as the sole nation in the Middle East and North Africa. In her down-time Bettina scripts adverts for the McCain campaign.)

Asia's version will start in 2009, and involve competitors from Cambodia, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Laos, Macao, Malaysia, Pakistan, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam. Can we be the first to de-cry the bloc-voting of China, HK, Macao and Taiwan - which is ruining Asiavision?

It will be produced and marketed by a new company - Asiavision Pte Ltd. National and regional finals will take place over six months - with one Grand Final.

Asiavision's CEO - Andreas Gerlach - claims the "format is highly suited to the Asia region and its people who love popular music and have a strong national pride." Oh, so they're the unique people in the world who like popular music and have national pride. I was wondering where they'd gone.

Having lived next door to international students in down-town Melbourne for nearly 10 years - the EDU editors have been exposed to more Asian pop than anyone should be. (Imagine castrated cats covering Celine Dion songs). We predict that this Asiavision Contest will not be a Contest to be listened to, but a Contest to be avoided

Because People Count...

The EBU have announced the return of the International Jury to Eurovision 2009!

Apparently in the face of demands of the BBC (one of the major funders of the Contest) the EBU have decided to be seen to do something to negate the appearance of Eastern Europe's neighbourhood-friendly voting patterns overwhelming another year's results. An International Jury will cast their votes on the performance and these will be considered along with the televoting of the public.

As yet there has been no announcement on how the jury will be used - whether they will account for 50% of the scores or (more wildly conjectured) that a popular winner and jury winner may be announced.

The EBU went to lengths to explain that western Europe has been voting for eastern European acts for several years and that is the real reason they've been winning, but they also acknowledged the rise in technology allowing people to vote for their own nation through trickery or diaspora votes.