BTS's Jimin made history by topping the US Billboard chart "Hot 100" with his new Korean song, but fans are strongly opposing Billboard's "change of rules."
Jimin's "Like Crazy" reached the top of the main single chart "Hot 100" on April 8, making him the first Korean solo artist to achieve this feat in Billboard's 65-year history.
"Like Crazy" was the 66th song to top the list in the first week of its debut, out of 1,148 songs that have reached the top. Achieving first place in the first week of its debut is a milestone that is difficult to accomplish, as it represents less than 6% of all songs that have topped the chart.
Jimin sold a total of 254,000 downloads and CD singles in the first week, with 10 million streams and 64,000 radio listeners. This shows how hard the fan club "ARMY" worked to support Jimin's success.
However, on the April 15 Billboard Hot 100 chart, Jimin dropped to 45th place, which angered ARMY around the world. They claimed that this drop in ranking was due to a "rule change" by Billboard.
Fans argued, "Billboard suddenly changed the aggregation method's rules the week after Jimin took first place."
According to fans, all US Billboard prediction sites predicted that "Like Crazy" would easily enter the top 10 this week. However, fans claimed that only 10% of the sales volume predicted by the forecast site was recognized by Billboard. In Jimin's case, fans supported him by purchasing music, as he was disadvantaged on local radio broadcasts. Fans tried to purchase his music all week, but the sudden "rule change" made their efforts in vain.
Billboard only accepts one purchase per email account. Fans appealed for support for Jimin through friends, family, and various social media platforms, but they claimed that Billboard changed the rules without prior notice.
Fans expressed frustration, saying, "Billboard always changes the ranking counting rules whenever BTS tops the list." They added, "When Jimin topped the list, we don't understand why Billboard changed the rules again."
Meanwhile, "Like Crazy" continues to create a "Jimin sensation" around the world, topping the UK's official download chart for the second consecutive week and making him the longest-running Korean solo artist at number one.
Billboard Rules Changed in January 2022
Billboard, the popular music chart, has changed its rules for counting digital music purchases, affecting the sales of remix versions and potentially impacting K-pop artists' entries into the Billboard chart.
Previously, Billboard counted up to four digital music purchases per person per week, but the new regulations, which came into effect on January 11, 2022, only count one download per week, with duplicate purchases excluded from the tally. The sales of albums priced at $3.49 and mini-albums with less than eight songs priced below $0.39 are also excluded from the sales tally. The changes have been implemented across all Billboard chart systems, including the Hot 100 and the Billboard 200, and are seen as a way to limit excessive fandom purchases and remix versions.
The new regulations have raised concerns about the entry of K-pop singers, particularly BTS, into the Billboard chart. K-pop artists rely heavily on strong fandom and downloads, and excluding duplicate purchases from the tally could decrease the reflection rate of downloads and increase the rates of streaming and radio broadcasts. In contrast, local U.S. artists mostly rely on streaming.
According to the 2021 U.S. music market annual report released by Billboard and MRC data, BTS's "Butter" was the most downloaded song of the year, with about 1.89 million downloads. In the "Top Digital Song Sales" category, BTS ranked third with "Permission to Dance" (400,000 downloads), sixth with "Dynamite" (310,000 downloads), and seventh with "My Universe" (290,000 downloads). "Butter" was the only song with more than 1 million downloads, surpassing the second-highest song, Walker Hayes' "Fancy Like," by 3.8 times (500,000 downloads).
fans are now protesting Billboard’s recent “rule change” that they claim caused Jimin’s song to drop in the charts.
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