Billboard intentionally changes rules to hinder BTS Jimin, angering fans 

BTS Jimin’s title, “Like Crazy”, flunked out of Billboard Hot 100’s Top 10 after placing 1st last week, raising suspicions. 

“Like Crazy”, the latest title song of BTS Jimin, placed first on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart in the first week of release. However, by the second week, the song had flunked out of top 10 amid various suspicions, angering BTS fans. Immediately, waves of outrage have been sparked, with the hashtags #BillboardRacist and #BillboardXenophobic trending globally.

Jimin’s Like Crazy MV

The reason why BTS fans are angry 

On April 10th (local time), American media Forbes revealed that in its 2nd week, Jimin’s “Like Crazy” sold only 14,800 digital sales, a drastic drop compared to the first week sales of 254,000. This number was also confirmed by Luminate, the data analytics company for the Billboard chart system. While this sales was enough to help Jimin rank 1st on Billboard’s Digital Song Sales chart, it was not adequate to keep the male idol within the Top 10 of Billboard Hot 100. 

However, according to independent agency HITS Daily Double,”Like Crazy” still sold over  115,000 digital sales in its 2nd week – a completely different number from the 14,800 sales reported by Billboard. This means that Billboard has subtracted over 100,000 copies from Jimin’s digital sales total, severely affecting the performance of “Like Crazy”.

An independent agency reports that Jimin’s “Like Crazy” records 115,000 sales in its second week.

On the other hand, fans of BTS, like many other Kpop fanbases, apply a strategy called “mass buying” to get their idols to rank high on the Billboard Top 100 chart. In particular, they spend a lot of money to buy as many digital sales as possible to create dominance, thus increasing points rapidly to put their idols at the highest positions. 

In addition, HYBE, the agency of BTS, also supports “mass buying” by releasing many remix versions of the original song, so fans can buy and accumulate points multiple times. The same strategy is also utilized for “Like Crazy”, contributing to the song debuting at No.1 on Billboard Hot 100.

However, for unknown reasons, Billboard deducted up to 90% of “Like Crazy”’s sales, only acknowledging 14,800 sales, while the other 100,000 sales seemed to be deemed invalid, possibly due to one account purchasing multiple copies to increase total sales. However, if this is the case, this means that Billboard has secretly changed their rules, wasting a lot of money and effort of BTS fans. Of course, this is just a speculation of BTS fans, and Billboard has not yet responded to these allegations.

Is Billboard secretly changing the rules, being unfair to BTS?

According to BTS fans, Billboard would secretly change the rules everytime BTS poses a chance to win No.1 on the Hot 100, and this may be an act of racial discrimination. 

Previously, when BTS’s “Butter” achieved such a feat with the “mass buying” strategy, Billboard changed the rules after a few months to tighten up the price of each song sold and limit the number of copies one account could buy in a week. In the latest change, Billboard further tightened the quantity of copies and methods one account can buy based on emails, but this was easily bypassed as music fans can simply create more emails. 


Of course, “mass buying” has always been a controversial strategy, not only for Kpop communities, but also for US-UK fans. In the case of BTS fans, they argue that “mass buying” still represents the fandom’s efforts, and the sales they bought came honestly from their own pockets. 

On the other hand, many contend that “mass buying” leads to the Billboard Hot 100 chart not accurately reflecting the popularity of songs in the US market. In fact, back in August 2021, the Deputy Editor of Billboard, Mr. Andrew Unterberger, once expressed how he is against mass buying, saying, “As long as BTS is going to sell as many copies as they need to stay on top each week, No. 2 debuts are basically the new No. 1 debut.”

Whatever the cast, Jimin is still the first Kpop soloist to place No.1 on Billboard Hot 100. 

Source: k14

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