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Data Analysts Attempt To Predict World's Largest Music Vote, Again

Unknown Lamer posted about 6 months ago | from the manufactured-tastes-prove-easy-to-predict dept.

Music 41

littlekorea writes "Data analysts in the U.S. and Australia have come up with alternative means to predict the world's largest music vote, Triple J's Hottest 100. The Warmest 100 was close to spot on last year after analysts mined data from social posts auto-generated during the voting process. This year, with that avenue shut off, they relied on data extracted using the Instagram API, among others, and hope to achieve similar results."

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41 comments

Don't take the purple acid (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46022313)

Or, take the purple acid!

Re:Don't take the purple acid (2, Funny)

Z00L00K (682162) | about 6 months ago | (#46022443)

Or watch the European Song Contest, which is about the same thing.

Re:Don't take the purple acid (1)

flyneye (84093) | about 6 months ago | (#46023353)

Doesnt matter.
The way to predict the winning artists is simply; take note of which artists are recieving the advertising money and promotion from the industry.
Since people will naturally gravitate to whatever they are told is good, repeatedly and exposed to it on the radio, the song becomes good, in spite of any lack of talent or depth. When the song is properly fattened on money and attention, it is slain, dried and sprinkled on shit, then served to the public who eat it and lick the plate. People are morons, in the U.S. and abroad.
The winners will be whoever the industry put the most money into. No magic, no tricks, no algorithms.

Normally makes sense, but ... (2)

dbIII (701233) | about 6 months ago | (#46023779)

The radio station in question mostly broadcasts material that does not have much advertising money or promotion from the industry behind it.

Re:Normally makes sense, but ... (1)

flyneye (84093) | about 6 months ago | (#46034331)

Doesn't matter. Top 10, 40, 100 playlists are prepackaged and leased by stations through services licensed by the RIAA.
If it's an oldies or college station, moot point. The world is FULL of top hit list stations. This makes up the bulk of radio, unless you have mostly AM stations in your area.

Re:Normally makes sense, but ... (1)

dbIII (701233) | about 6 months ago | (#46034649)

The radio station is question is effectively a national version of a college station.

Re:Normally makes sense, but ... (1)

dbIII (701233) | about 6 months ago | (#46042715)

This article should give you a bit of insight:
http://www.crikey.com.au/?p=42... [crikey.com.au]
From the article:

Triple J's playlist is immense. There are so many songs in that music database there may as well not be a playlist. A rather funny piece on FasterLouder is the only one to identify a Triple J sound as a confusing "genre clusterfuck". The data (songs) in the playlist are so abundant they have none of the meaning, or the benefit to musicians, that recurrence provides.

Re:Don't take the purple acid (1)

fuzzywig (208937) | about 6 months ago | (#46026019)

Go look at last year's results [abc.net.au] and see if you still think that:

1) Macklemore & Ryan Lewis - Thrift Shop {ft. Wanz}
2) Of Monsters And Men - Little Talks
3) alt-J - Breezeblocks
4) Flume - Holdin On
5) Mumford & Sons - I Will Wait
Not really a particularly commercial lineup, and that's just the top five.

Re:Don't take the purple acid (1)

flyneye (84093) | about 6 months ago | (#46034353)

No idea who the industry pushes in the rest of the world.
It used to be fun to keep track, but it's all the same. If an artist lends themselves to easy promotion, they are chosen over a more talented artist that isn't so intuitive to sell. It's all about how MUCH product you can stuff through the pipes, not the quality of the product. People will buy what they're told, so focus on profit instead. THAT is where the industrys head is.

Approximately 10% of the votes (4, Informative)

stoborrobots (577882) | about 6 months ago | (#46022327)

There were fewer than 200,000 votes cast last year - they've sampled close to 10% of the actual votes, so I'm sure they'll have a reasonable approximation of the final result...

Re:Approximately 10% of the votes (1)

Cimexus (1355033) | about 6 months ago | (#46022361)

That doesn't sound right. There were 1.26 million votes cast in 2011 and 1.4 million votes cast this year (source: the official Hottest 100 webpage and Wikipedia). I can't find last year's figures but they would be somewhere in that range.

Fairly impressive for a country with a population of ~23M.

Re:Approximately 10% of the votes (5, Informative)

abhi_beckert (785219) | about 6 months ago | (#46022471)

That doesn't sound right.

It depends whether you consider a "vote" to be a song choice, or a person who voted.

Voters submit a list of their favourite handful of songs, they don't pick one. Triple J usually picks the number of song submissions, not the number of people who voted, since it's the songs themselves that they count.

Fairly impressive for a country with a population of ~23M.

A lot of the votes aren't by australians. Triple J streams worldwide for free and they have extremely good taste in music. Their charter requires, by law, that they do not have any ads except to promote music and culture, which means they promote music and festivals that they think are interesting, but don't collect any revenue for it.

So there are plenty of people around the world who tune in.

The event is several hours long, and it takes place on a national public holiday when everyone is off work. I've been invited to more than one party, to spend the whole day listening to music, drinking beer, eating bad food and trying to find some shade and/or water (bloody hot here this time of year!).

Re:Approximately 10% of the votes (1)

MrKaos (858439) | about 6 months ago | (#46023021)

A lot of the votes aren't by australians. Triple J streams worldwide for free and they have extremely good taste in music. Their charter requires, by law, that they do not have any ads except to promote music and culture, which means they promote music and festivals that they think are interesting, but don't collect any revenue for it.

They also used to have a much more comprehensive current affairs programs and I fear they have lost much. Though, provisions in the AUS-USA fta may have an influence on this. However I enjoy the music and they are pretty good at that, though I do miss the drum promotions - some were pretty funny.

Re:Approximately 10% of the votes (1)

Cimexus (1355033) | about 6 months ago | (#46030797)

Parent poster here.

Good point - having never voted myself I wasn't aware that there are multiple votes per person, so that makes sense now.

But I do know about JJJ and their worldwide audience ... because I am one. I'm Australian but live overseas and I'll be tuning in for the countdown :)

Re:Approximately 10% of the votes (1)

stoborrobots (577882) | about 6 months ago | (#46032275)

Yeah, I never knew myself. When I looked for the stats from last year, I found this article, claiming 187,975 voters casting 1,516,765 votes [fasterlouder.com.au] . Since I didn't know which number would reflect what they were collecting, I looked at #hottest100 on twitter to see what kind of images people were sharing. The ones I found looked like http://instagram.com/p/jX3m6pMTsy/ [instagram.com] , https://twitter.com/andrewyesterday/status/424445352557547520/ [twitter.com] , and https://twitter.com/Natalia_Cooper9/status/424770515027623936/ [twitter.com] , so I assumed the 187k number was the correct comparison...

Re:Approximately 10% of the votes (1)

doesnothingwell (945891) | about 6 months ago | (#46027917)

It's not voting, its masturbation, now with a new and improved predictive algorithm. Now we know who launched it and where the best stains will land, and the music industry wets itself again. Sometimes it's depressing to be human.

What news! (1)

girlintraining (1395911) | about 6 months ago | (#46022329)

So wait... you're saying that when you look at what people are posting on the internet... you can tell what their opinions are on something? NO WAY!!!!! -_- How is this "predictive" by any definition? We've known for awhile that if you get a sample size of maybe 1-3% of a group... you can predict the distribution with a good degree of accuracy. There's nothing special about this slashvertisement.

Re:What news! (1)

abhi_beckert (785219) | about 6 months ago | (#46022481)

Most people who vote for the Hottest 100 do not post stuff on the internet, so the statisticians will need to account for and attempt to remove the bias towards the style of music people who are active online prefer. That's not easy.

Re:What news! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46022509)

The voting is online now. I would say most of the triple J listeners these days are active on social media. it is a youth radio station after all.

Reminder (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46022335)

It is rude to randomly redirect visitors to beta.slashdot.
Even more so because beta sucks.

Providing a hard to find opt-out, adding /?nobeta=1 to the URL, just upgrades the aggravation level from "rude" to "insulting and infuriating".
The only acceptable option is, as always, opt-in.

I guess you need reminding. a lot.

captcha 'contempt'. how appropriate.

Re:Reminder (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46022363)

I liked posting a firehose article on the front page; so that whenever I click on it I get greeted with a "You do not have permission to view this article" message.

Thoughtcrime and the end of democracy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46022409)

This is one of the tools needed.

Re:Thoughtcrime and the end of democracy (1)

Sockatume (732728) | about 6 months ago | (#46022555)

Yes, nothing's more destructive to democracy than people knowing the outcome of an election.

Re:Thoughtcrime and the end of democracy (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46022753)

Yes, nothing's more destructive to democracy than people knowing the outcome of an election.

Quite so. You see, if the predicted result is not right, corrective actions [1] are applied. Repeat until certainlty hits required treshold.

[1] Concentration_of_media_ownership [wikipedia.org]

Re:Thoughtcrime and the end of democracy (1)

Vintermann (400722) | about 6 months ago | (#46022947)

Yes, that's not surprising as elections aren't very democratic:

It is accepted as democratic when public offices are allocated by lot; and as oligarchic when they are filled by election. -- Aristotle

Winner! (-1)

msobkow (48369) | about 6 months ago | (#46022417)

A mass media piece of crap produced by a team of sound engineers, choreographers, and writers that will be forgotten within 5 years.

Second place: Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody", written by one man and performed by the band alone.

Re: Winner! (1)

Chuck Chunder (21021) | about 6 months ago | (#46022475)

That seems like a somewhat pessimistic view, a glance through the historical results shows some pretty solid songs (and some quirky ones) http://www.abc.net.au/triplej/... [abc.net.au] If course, they aren't all Bohemian Rhapsody's, but there's only ever been one if them.

Re:Winner! (1)

Sockatume (732728) | about 6 months ago | (#46022561)

Of all the songs to pick, you choose the one that ushered in the era of the "music video"? :/

ignoramus (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46022811)

well done dickhead, I think you'll find Bohemian Rhapsody was released 38 years too early for this poll.

Re:Winner! (2)

jonwil (467024) | about 6 months ago | (#46022883)

Given the kind of music Triple-J plays (and the kind of people who are likely listen to it instead of the mainstream commercial stations) I highly doubt any of the Top 100 winners are going to be manufactured mass-marked over-hyped pop crap.

Re:Winner! (1)

timdingo (1922214) | about 6 months ago | (#46023397)

Given the kind of music Triple-J plays (and the kind of people who are likely listen to it instead of the mainstream commercial stations) I highly doubt any of the Top 100 winners are going to be manufactured mass-marked over-hyped pop crap.

'any of the Top 100 winners' seriously? from the 2012 list: 1 Thrift Shop - Macklemore and Ryan Lewis featuring Wanz After that I didn't even bother to further inspect the list. If that isn't manufactured mass-marked over-hyped pop crap, I don't exactly know what is.

Re:Winner! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46024893)

Can something be "manufactured" in the sense of being created by record labels if the musician in question is not actually signed to or affiliated with any major label? I bet what's far more likely is that you don't like the song so you assume that it's obviously just some garbage thrown together by a big name producer with studio musicians and a catchy hook. Macklemore is more or less the opposite of every big name hip hop act on the charts right now, against drug use, against buying into pricey fashion, etc.

Re:Winner! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46033881)

After that I didn't even bother to further inspect the list.

Wow very good man. You got through 1 out of 100. You didn't even look at the top 10. Yes Thrift Shop was somewhat generic over-hyped pop, but none the less it ticked all the boxes for a hit. Why not look at some of the other results.

2011 Hottest 100 which was won by Gotye for a song released by some no-name record company over a year before Universal decided to pick it up and promote it overseas.
2010 the number one song was by an Australian acoustic folk duo.

Naturally you miss one of the most critical points about this contest. It's an open contest for any song released in that year voted for by people. It has nothing to do with sales, promos, charts, etc. That means if you dislike song number 1, sorry but you're in the minority. Go back to your classical / techno rubbish and stop shitting on what other people happen to like.

Re:Winner! (1)

BlackHawk-666 (560896) | about 6 months ago | (#46023637)

Triple J went mainstream a few decades ago. It's still mass marketed over hyped pop crap, but just more oriented at the 30 somethings.

Re:Winner! (1)

dbIII (701233) | about 6 months ago | (#46023799)

It seems nearly every music radio station gets stuck in the time period where it first became popular.

Re:Winner! (2)

Gumbercules!! (1158841) | about 6 months ago | (#46024751)

I'd fully refute that. Triple J is barely recognisable to me, these days, and I was 100% immersed in the music scene in the 2nd half of the 90's. It's all dance and rap now - a very different sound. It's not "wrong" or "worse" but to claim it's in anyway oriented at the 30 something's, like me, is way off; it's just aimed at people who are younger than I am. It's aimed firmly at the uni student age, and always has been. Even their news articles lead with stories like rises to student fees, etc.

Re:Winner! (1)

thegarbz (1787294) | about 6 months ago | (#46033895)

If you think Triple J is "mainstream" you should really have a listen to what some of the other stations are playing. The typical distribution in Australian cities are a classical station, a country station, one or two family radio stations playing 90s pop hits, a rock station which seems to have guns and roses and cold chisel on repeat, and then 5 other stations who play nothing but modern pop/rock/techno.

Yes Triple J does play some of the stuff the other stations do, but the key difference is they will typically do it a year or so earlier and then move on once the music becomes "mainstream" and starts getting repeated to death on the 5 pop stations.

If you want less mainstream then why not tune into triple j unearthed on digital or online radio where they don't play anything commercial at all.

Re:Winner! (1)

BlackHawk-666 (560896) | about 6 months ago | (#46034109)

I do watch Rage from time to time, generally the Friday night edition since that's when the new musicians are given a chance. Unearthed would be about the only time I'd be interested in Triple J, but that's mostly because I find radio friendly pop / rock to be like nails down a chalkboard.

While Triple J is not as mainstream as Triple M / etc (so awful!) it is still a pretty mainstream radio station. You just have to see what songs get into the hottest 100 every year. I recall listening to it a bit before leaving for the UK in 1999, and when I got back I bought a car and tuned the radio to JJJ to see what they were playing. It was still Powderfinger, Regurgitator, and the like - new songs, to be sure, but a lot of the same old bands.

Sure, Triple J often gets the music a year ahead of the more commercial radio stations, and they do push lesser known artists - but it's still too commercial for my tastes (in general). I like watching Rage because I can just record 10 hours at a time, fast forward the crap - and save the good stuff for viewing later.

Re:Winner! (1)

thegarbz (1787294) | about 6 months ago | (#46034553)

While true you can't judge the Triple J by the hottest 100. Anyone can vote regardless of what station they listen to, hence more popish music ends up getting up to the top. My girlfriend is like that. Spends all day listening to Nova and voted a lot of pop crap into the Hottest 100, likely just to annoy me. But it does skew the results.

fago8z (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46022815)

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