Call it a case of history repeating itself. This year, as last, the revelation of the Eurovision jury votes has led to a series of somewhat predictable results. The juries from Azerbaijan and Armenia ranked each other last. Lithuania’s jury ranked pre-contest favourite Russia as the worst entry. And Russia’s jury put eventual winner Jamala down in 24th. In all instances the political motivations are clear.

But as bloggers, fans and pundits look East and scream “Corruption!”, there’s a storm brewing out West. As Swedish tabloid Aftonbladet points out, Sweden’s jury has come down with a severe case of nepotism.

This year’s Swedish jury consisted of Melodifestivalen stars Lisa Ajax and Anton Ewald, songwriter Wrethov, P3 music editor Karin Gunnarsson, and NRJ program director Rickard Keilor.

Aftonbladet makes the case that the Melfest stars and songwriter have questions to answer after awarding marks to Azerbaijan and Malta — two countries that struggled to make an impact with the Swedish public.

Azerbaijan’s Samra ultimately finished in 17th position in the grand final. The Swedish public wasn’t impressed with her song “Miracle”, ranking it 24th out of 25. Yet somehow Azerbaijan managed to secure 10 points — that’s second place – with the Swedish jury. Let’s see why…

Swedish Idol winner Lisa Ajax awarded top marks to Samra. As Aftonbladet makes clear, that seems rather convenient since “Miracle” was written by Henrik Wikström, Amir Aly and Jakke Erixson, who routinely write and produce music for Capitol Records — the same label that represents Lisa. Furthermore, dancer Zain Odelstål appeared in Samra’s stage show. He previously worked with Lisa on her Melodfestivalen 2016 bid.

As for Wrethov, he wrote “Always on My Mind” — Azerbaijan’s Eurovision 2009 entry. Perhaps nodding to his friends and allies within the Azeri delegation, he ranked “Miracle” sixth.

Aftonbladet has also raised questions about the seven points the Swedish jury awarded to Malta, which only came 23rd out of 25 in the Swedish televote.

The connections to the Maltese act are quite clear. Melodifestivalen star Molly Pettersson Hammar — and a few other Swedes — co-authored the song and served in the backing choir.

Do you think Sweden needs tighter controls over its jury? Should it be choosing jurors who have existing relationships with entries at the contest? Let us know in the comments box below.

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Elin
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Elin

I have a question regarding the televotes. Is there someone that know if it is possible to get the result from diffrent countries? How many that were the total televotes in diffrent countries and how did they wote i procent!?

Elin
Guest
Elin

Yes, this whith the juris has lost it’s purpus as it doesn’t work in this form. If there should be a jury, perhaps it should be totaly diffrent? What if there should be jurigroups from difrent countries sittning. At least it would work in the semifinals. What if there were one group whith Young artist from diffrent countries, one group whith producers etc. And they had to sit all together and come up whith a result. Or perhaps we should skip the contestens and only come together and have a music festival? I have been thinking lately that it is… Read more »

nn
Guest
nn

Antti Koistinen

It weird whan saw that member of juries put some country in TOP 5 in semi and then same country in bottom five in final , or TO5 in final and last five in semi. Sometimes I agree with that maybe in semi or final singer didn t sang very good .

nn
Guest
nn

EBU also allow to we had in Australia juries one member who is written lyricks for Greece entry in 2009 and composer of that song is composer of Russia song 2016.
In Germany we had 2 member who are in judges in Voice of Germany , and they judged Iveta from Armenia in that contest.

Nikos
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Nikos

Sweden giving Azerbaijan that 10 was obvious bias… Giving Malta 7 was not too out of the ordinary I would say, since Malta generally did well with juries.

Antti Koistinen
Guest
Antti Koistinen

Georgian jury votes should be disqualify totally. There were no individuals as should, they were voting as group (or as one person, i don´t know that). I noticed this, when I was comparing semi-final votes and final votes. There is judge called “Nata Natsvlishvilis”, judge number D in Georgian jury. “She” gave put countries in order like this (i took out oddest ones) Ukraine 17. in semi-final, 7. in final Belgium 16. in semi-final, 9 in final Serbia 15. in semi-final, 6. in final Poland 4. in semi-final. 17. in final Bulgaria 2. in semi-final, 22. in final “Nata Natsvlishvilis”… Read more »

karminowe.usta
Guest
karminowe.usta

I supposed composer is answer of my question – why was Malta so high. I think jury voting shouldn`t exist because this solution is not transparently. In my opinion televoting is so fair because people vote for songs not countries.

sonic0201
Guest
sonic0201

@denmark win please
Instead they gave points to songs written by swedish writers….

sonic0201
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sonic0201

Another dumb thing was French jury ranked Austria 1st in the semi final, and 3rd in the final. Austria was clearly not the jury favourite in other countries, but the song was in french language, so the french jury ranked it high. Just because you hear a song in your native language, that doesn’t make it automatically better, right? This is something that you expect from biased televoters, but not from a professional jury.

Armenia is calling
Guest
Armenia is calling

Georgia was wise to cooperate with Swedes otherwise FYR of Macedonia would qualify instead!

Armenia is calling
Guest
Armenia is calling

Of course this isnt a cheat! Westerners are fair in whatever they do. Only Post Soviet countries cheat. All those Eastern countries should be thrown away from the contest . Let’s just keep Azerbaijan as Swedes make a lot of money selling them songs! I think Swedish mafia of EBU even made Azerbaijan to win in 2011 as there was a contact according to which in upcoming 10 years aswell Azerbaijan must buy songs from Sweden for Eurovision!

Redfox
Guest
Redfox

actually, the swedes did give us points, but russians planes stole them before they reached us.

denmark win please
Guest
denmark win please

I would say Sweden is one of the most reliable countries in the world.
They gave their neighbous zero point. Last year too.

Elin
Guest
Elin

MTB
Just for the record. It is swedish escfan that has poitet out for swedish media.
But I think that it is more that Lisa is young and infleced by her friendship. I don’t think she get som benefits.

Elin
Guest
Elin

Someone It is awalibel on the webbsight Eurovision.tv. Thank you telewoers from Norway for giving us som point althou we beet you in icehockey again. By the way, some sweeds were little bit grumpy towards the jury of norway. We didn’t get a singel point from our dear neigbour. Well from telewoters, bit not from the jury. Hmmm, a blame it on the swedish isehockey teem that didn’t let Norway win on saturday. ; ) Some Norweigian woter on Twitter ” Karma, and paybacktime. Or perhaps I should blame Måns joking and singing , “when Norway give sweden 12, it’s… Read more »

MTD
Guest
MTD

I just love it when the corruption that everyone seeks on the East is actually present in their own neighborhood. 😛

And don’t let us start on the most shady ESC ever in terms of results – ESC 2013, the winner Denmark. 😉

And for God sake Wiwi team, make your site available on other servers or whatever!

MTD
Guest
MTD

I just love it when the corruption that everyone seeks on the East is actually present in their own neighborhood. 😛

And don’t let us start on the most shady ESC ever in terms of results – ESC 2013, the winner Denmark. 😉

Someone
Guest
Someone

can y’all at least check Norway’s jury vote…

Maldinga
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Maldinga

This year’s jury was total mess. Can you show an adequate voting in any of the countries? No country whose jury guessed more than 6 songs in top 10 of the viewers.

Lolilly
Guest
Lolilly

HOW IS IT FAIR WHEN THE JURY VOTED FOR AUSTRALIA, PEOPLE VOTED FOR RUSSIA AND AT THE END UKRAIN WON????? Hellooo! Sooo unfair!

GEF
Guest
GEF

And Greece gave 12 points to Russia and the spokesperson event mentioned this when he announced the 12 points. He is not very smart I guess. OK, the problem is. Swedes are meanwhile writing song for everyone and in particular for some countries like Aserbaijan. This links are dangerous I guess, especially if other musicians or songwriters are in the jury. Why don’t they put journalists or other experts in the juries. I cannot understand the procedure. Nobody knows about the relationship between songwriter x and country z.

Azaad
Guest
Azaad

Because the jury votes can’t be discounted now, the EBU needs to seriously reform them. keep the 50/50 split, but increase their sizes and integrity.

Elin
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Elin

The swedish national celection is’n big enuff for us. There are only room for 28 songs so we have to go abroad as we are obbsesed by ESC, and well! Every escnerd and artist know eachouther from the ESCschool Mellodifestivalen!

Elin
Guest
Elin

I sjolund be:
Well, when sweden and SVT afford to host Eurovision agan it’s time for the swedish songwriters, background singers, dansers, coreografs etc to stay in sweden. ; )

Elin
Guest
Elin

Well, when sweden and SVT afford to host Eurovision agan tis time ford the swedish songwriters, background singers, dansers, coreografs etc to stay in sweden. ; )

Elin
Guest
Elin

Entries whid sweds in Eurovision 2016 Semifinal 1: • Moldavien: Lidia Isac – Falling Stars: Songwriters Gabriel Alares, Ellen Berg och Sebastian Lestapier. Gabriel are also a B ackupsinger • Armenien: Iveta Mukuchyan – LoveWave: Sacha Jean-Baptiste has prodused the act. • Ryssland: Sergey Lazarev – You Are The Only One: Text Of the song John Ballard. Alvaro Estrella backgrund danser and singer together WHITE Jennie Jahns, Adam Svensson, Daniel Gill och Johan D. Seil. • Tjeckien: Gabriela Gun?íková – I Stand: Songwriter Christian Schneider och Sara Biglert. Backuppsinger Elin Åkersson. • Cypern: Minus One – Alter Ego: Songwriter Thomas… Read more »

Pavel
Guest
Pavel

With the jury and televote a being presented separately, it puts more of a spotlight on jury weirdness and will hopefully lead to jury members not giving top marks to their mates.
+++++++++
Suddenly it is only the judges who are under attack which is unfair cause televoting is much worse.
I would happily leave the final table to stand the way the judges have voted

@EugeneESCUK
Guest

Pavel :-

I would be happy with a 100% jury vote if it could be shown that the jury could be 100% trusted. We KNOW some are not 100% fair and honest and basically cheat. We know some are not music experts above. That is where the problem is.

Sergeys husband
Guest

I dont think that the jury should vote, why not just let the PEOPLE vote.

Robyn Gallagher
Editor

With the jury and televote a being presented separately, it puts more of a spotlight on jury weirdness and will hopefully lead to jury members not giving top marks to their mates.

Julian
Guest
Julian

17 songs in ESC have Swedish involvement, about half the total songs. Nepotism in this case would be if a member of the Swedish jury has direct connection to the song it voted highly. If it was a culture thing he/she would have plenty of other Swedish songs to choose from.
Azerbaijan has already bought almost 10 years of Swedish music, don’t think the vote of jury for them is a surprise nor that it would stop in the near future.

Huh
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Huh

This contest keeps on inviting inexperienced singers as juries for more than a year, it’s pathetic.

esc1234
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esc1234

Oh tell me what lisa ajax and melodifestivalen starlets know about music. Azerbaijan and Malta entries are written by Swedes. So this is the answer on why they given so high scores

Alexanderized
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Alexanderized

@Wawwu
Your comment cracked me up so bad! I support your idea completely!

Wawwu
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Wawwu

Let individual jurymembers write a motivation of +/- 50 words per song why it was ranked the way he/she chose. Then you force them to pay professional attention to the show. Afterwards eurovision.tv should let us read all those motivations, cause thats what their job is supposed to be: give an opinion based on the song, singing, production and act. And if a motivation doesn’t make sense, its more clear where political or personal reasons are behind a ranking

Pavel
Guest
Pavel

Things have advanced a lot in the televote system the EBU uses now. It can detect and exclude systematic bulk votes or ‘power-voting’. +++++ It can detect robotic intrusion, but if it is done more carefully that the basic power-voting it may well take place Even in the final the juries placed the Grannies 11th, yes 11th with 94 points!!!! ++++++ Well, their semifinal had the gems like “Social Network Song” so it was a tough call in terms of quality. The jury vote alone would have been more satisfactory towards the outcome of the last ten years of the… Read more »

tania
Guest
tania

@ ELin thank you for sharing it! now i understand why so many songs are so similar ))))) petra and mans did not quite joke saying that all sweden is about eurovision )) though, sound of silence is one of the best songs of this competition. and poor televote shows that without neighbors, bribers whatsoever it is difficult to win only by televote. i am absolutely for jury vote combined with televote. only it should be controlled. it concerns both of these votes. because televote is not so just if you can buy a lot of sim-cards and send several… Read more »

@EugeneESCUK
Guest

Pavel :-

The juries should have prevented the grannies getting to the final in the first place really. That is when you do kill a song. They did not do that. Even in the final the juries placed the Grannies 11th, yes 11th with 94 points!!!! Again the juries not doing their job.

Things have advanced a lot in the televote system the EBU uses now. It can detect and exclude systematic bulk votes or ‘power-voting’.

Österikke
Guest
Österikke

Juries can only bring quality and credibility to the Contest if they are controlled in return. Quality needs control.

ELin
Guest
ELin

Well sweden had a finger one way or another in a lot of songs. Don’t be so hard om Lisa pleese, she is young and young maby to young for this responibility!? I think she and all the other in the swedish jury know a lot of the sweds from different countris! Sweds in Eurovision 2016 Semifinal 1: • Moldavien: Lidia Isac – Falling Stars: Låtskrivare är bland andra svenska Gabriel Alares, Ellen Berg och Sebastian Lestapier. Gabriel körar även bakom artisten. • Armenien: Iveta Mukuchyan – LoveWave: Numret är gjort av svenska Sacha Jean-Baptiste. • Ryssland: Sergey Lazarev –… Read more »

Pavel
Guest
Pavel

Televoting can be easily rigged and hijacked as well, there can be people voting from multiple id-cards and so on.
I’d probably sign the petition to make the UK jury vote the only valid source cause they’ve chosen the only credible song as their “winner”.

Briekimchi
Guest
Briekimchi

I think severe punishments for jury members whose voting is clearly ridiculous (Lisa Ajax needs to be publically flogged for giving her 1st place to Azerbaijan) would be the way to solve the problem. It is important that it is a punishment for the individual rather than the country. Only then, will they learn!

Elin
Guest
Elin

Well check how many of the countries in the Grand final 2016 tjat sweden has some connection to in one way or another.
Russia,
Malta
Cyprus
Georgia
Azerbadjan
Checia
lithuania
Armenia
and some more…

Pavel
Guest
Pavel

Azerbaijan was accused of rigging the vote in 2011 The example of how pitiful televoting really is. Take a look at 2012 contest. When Sweden got 343 points (Won), grannies got around 330+ which seems completely irrelevant to the actual song. Russia’s also constantly in the televoting top 10 during the last 10 years whatever drivel they send. Their diaspora is really huge, a number of their sympathizers is also immense (take a look at the balkan states, ex-soviet countries and so on). Spain is always down even when they send masterpieces like “Quedate conmigo” (2012, 18th in the televote).… Read more »

power b.
Guest
power b.

Wise thought Eugene! I’m in.

@EugeneESCUK
Guest

Correction :- Italy and Russia 2015 and 2016 of course, bot 2014 and 2015, apologies!!

@EugeneESCUK
Guest

The EBU has a real problem with the juries especially last year and this year. 5 people can just kill an entry by ranking it 11th as we have seen with Russia or elevate a song as we see above. We know the juries collude and some decide what they are going to do. This “power” has to be addressed somehow by the EBU. SOME juries have their own agenda and that includes political motives, tactical ranking and neighbourly love (or hate in some cases.) As a result there is a distinct lack of consistency between the juries. Some juries… Read more »

Anthony
Guest

I think the overall fall out from this year’s eurovision, is the vast difference between the Jury voter preferences to the Public voting – beyond tastful choices. The separation of the voting really shows the questionable voting practices which have been going on for a long time, and have now only really become very clear due to the new reveal structure. In selecting the jury, they should have an element where jurors are: – Separated from each other and voting in private individually, so you don’t end up with a consenus like vote, rather than individual choice. – Greater number… Read more »

Mark Beckenfruer
Guest
Mark Beckenfruer

DW, nobody’s feeling guilty. As you perhaps noticed, Wiwib. is not the only one who covered this ‘swedish nepotism case’.

ESC84
Guest
ESC84

joke jury