The first major change to the voting system for years has just arrived and the whole Eurovision community is discussing the big changes in the way the points will be revealed during the show, especially in the grand final. But what would last year’s results have looked like using the new voting system?
Over the years we have seen a lot of changes in the voting system like the re-introduction of the juries in the semis in 2008 and then in the grand final in 2009, or announcing the winner even before all the countries have awarded their points, starting this tradition in Malmö 2013. However, this is the biggest overhaul of the points since the 12-1 system was introduced in Stockholm in 1975.
We will have two parts in the voting section. The first one comes with each country revealing their jury points from 1-8, 10 and 12 (the points from 1-10 will automatically be displayed on the screen with the International spokesperson from each country, only announcing the 12 points in order to be faster) and then, the second part is all about the televoting and will be presented by the hosts. The televoting points from all participating countries will be combined, providing one score for each song. These televoting results will then be announced by the host, starting with the country receiving the fewest points from the public and ending with the country that received the highest number of points, just like Melodifestivalen (the Swedish national selection).
The new voting system guarantees that the winning country will break Alexander Rybak’s record from 2009, when he won with 387 points. Another thing is that it will be less likely that a country will earn ”nul points”. A big disadvantage will be that the new system will again lean heavily back in favour of big diaspora block votes, which was why the jury was reintroduced.
Aside from the diaspora voting there are other issues. What will happen with countries that cannot deliver a valid televoting result, due to small populace or technical issues? EBU exlained that in that case (San Marino for example), a substitute result is calculated by the audience result of a pre-selected group of countries. These groups and their composition have been pre-approved by the EBU and the Reference Group. That process is still unclear even after EBU’s explanation. We await to see the outcome of this exception
Let’s see now, how the scoreboard would have been if the new voting system has been used last year.
First the jury points:
As Montenegrin jury’s points used the average of the points the country gave in the last competitions (12 Serbia, 10 Slovenia, 8 Russia, 7 Italy, 6 Albania, 5 Azerbaijan, 4 Sweden, 3 Israel, 2 Estonia, 1 Greece)
For FYR Macedonia jury’s points also used the average of the points the country gave in the last competitions (12 Serbia, 10 Albania, 8 Slovenia, 7 Italy, 6 Russia, 5 Montenegro, 4 Sweden, 3 Armenia, 2 Estonia, 1 Belgium)
Both of the countries used only the televoting in their result, as EBU didn’t aproove their juries’s results.
The televoting results:
As EBU announced for San Marino we used the average points of Italy, Switzerland, Slovenia, Austria and Malta televoting, that gave 12 for Italy, 10 for Albania, 8 for Serbia, 7 for Russia, 6 for Sweden. 5 for for Australia, 4 for Israel, 3 for Belgium, 2 for Romania and 1 for Montenegro.
So after adding the two seperate results, the final results would be like that:
As you can see the only difference in the top 10 would have Italy and Russia’s places. Italy would have been second and Russia third. However there are many changes in the rest of the scoreboard. Albania would have been 6 places higher with the new system, taking advantage of its big diaspora and the high points Albania got in televoting. The same with Armenia which would have been 3 places higher. Montenegro and Lithuania would have lost 3 places, while Germany and Austria would avoid 0 points and the last place, as United Kingdom would be last with that voting system.
(The article does not take into account that Malta would have qualified for the final instead of Azerbaijan, but this would have been the case).
The new system is intended to increase suspense in the voting procedure, we have to wait however until May to see how this will work.
What do you think of it? We asked that question on Twitter:
EBU announced change in reading of points – what do you think?
— EuroVisionary (@EuroVisionary) February 18, 2016
Below you can watch the video of SVT explaining the new rules: