Albania Ronela Hajati Sekret Eurovision 2022 First Rehearsal
EBU / Andres Putting

The impactful voting rule change for Eurovision 2023 has now sunk in for us all. The decision to remove jury voting from the semi-final and let the “Rest of the World” vote in each show has led to mixed reactions all over Europe and beyond.

Eurovision fans and former participants alike have had their say on the changes. Here’s a look at some of the most telling reactions.

Eurovision fans react to “Rest of World” vote

American and other non-European fans must have awoken to some of the best news they could get in terms of the contest. Finally, they will be able to cast a vote in Eurovision. It even made it to the New York Times

Our readers’ reaction to the news was mixed to positive. In our Twitter poll, 44.6% voted in support of including a “Rest of World” vote at the contest.

A number of our readers outside of Europe and Australia were excited about the vote.

Meanwhile, others had concerns about the fact fans will have to use their credit card to vote.

And despite the ability to vote, Eurovision is still not available for viewing in some countries due to copyright concerns.

Eurovision stars and fans react to removal of juries in the semi-finals

There were far more reactions to the proposed removal of jury votes from each semi-final. In fact, it would have resulted in a change of generally two or three finalists each year if implemented sooner.

One of the first Eurovision stars to react to this rule was Albanian diva Ronela Hajati. She finished 11th in the first semi-final of Eurovision 2022, but would have made the grand final on Saturday if the result was solely based on televoting, securing ninth spot with the public. Taking to Instagram, the star replied to the official Eurovision account’s post.

 

LUM!X, Austria’s 2022 entrant, also replied with the same kind of surprise to the news.

The DJ finished last with the jury during semi-final one in Turin. Although he still missed out with the public as well, he would have been much closer to reaching the grand final — LUM!X and PIA MARIA were 11th with the televoting.

 

In semi-final two of Eurovision 2022, it was Ireland’s Brooke who finished 11th with the televote, and again the jury dragged her down.

The “That’s Rich” singer was also feeling disappointed about the rule change being implemented now rather than last year.

Meanwhile, Dutch Eurovision 2023 hopeful Dion Cooper simply replied with “Exciting!”. 

It was not only Eurovision stars who reacted to the news, but also commentators. Long-time Dutch commentator Cornald Maas told his followers that he had mixed feelings about the change. In a tweet, he wrote: 

“Just talked to ANP. Good concerning fraud/malpractices of the juries. Less good concerning smaller/sensitive songs that mostly need the attention of the jury. The Netherlands generally does better with juries, but with the exception of Waylon, we would have still made the final in the past years with solely televoting.”

Our Twitter poll was very mixed. But our followers voted slightly more negatively towards the voting system change, with 36.4% of voters thinking it is a bad move. Less than 1% behind, 35.9% of voters believe removing the semi-final juries is a good move.

Even then, there’s a good proportion who also still want to wait and see how it plays out next year.

In the comments, fans sounded off with both their concerns and happiness about the televoting solely deciding the ten qualifiers from each semi-final.

What are your thoughts now the news has fully sunk in? Have you made up your mind about the voting rule change for Eurovision 2023? Let us know in the comments down below!

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Dawid
Dawid
1 month ago

Ronela honestly should remind silent. She didn’t get through because for judges and rightfully so. It’s song competition, not softporn awards

CagardiB
CagardiB
1 month ago

In regards to the rest of the world voting, I don’t see why someone would oppose unless is racist. These people are voting with money yet they don’t have representation, and people tend to forget is THE REST OF THE WORLD, not just US or english speaking countries. Go pass your ideal that Europe should hold a European contest with European values in this modern world where there’s people settling from everywhere in the world, this is nothing but an excuse when you consider australia. And also, their votes are not equal to those in europe so shut up.

Pat Pastor
Pat Pastor
1 month ago
Reply to  CagardiB

Damn straight!

Rall
Rall
1 month ago
Reply to  CagardiB

If Europe wants to hold a competition with just European countries competing then they have every right do to so. I personally don’t mind these proposed changes but maybe you should shut up with your virtue signalling.

Dalth
Dalth
1 month ago

Seems slightly pointless using this system just for the semi finals. Plus the majority of songs that have qualified out of the semi finals over the past few years has been correct so why change it.
Usually there are a few countries fighting it out for the the last few qualification spots which may cause disagreements. However the better songs and performances do tend to qualify. Do not want to go back to songs qualifying just because of a large diaspora vote.

Benito Camelo
Benito Camelo
1 month ago

Not only don’t I like these changes, they also concern me bc they can worsen the contest overall

Lin
Lin
1 month ago

I feel like it would’ve been better to implement an “other european countries” vote rather than the “rest of the world” one.
Being from a country that withdrew in 2013, it always feels bitter to not be able to vote and be excluded from the “event for the entire Europe”. I guess the non-participating countries don’t get much of a voice since they aren’t big or well-known, but I’m sure most Eurovision fans who live in the non-participating European countries would love to be included more instead of being grouped with all the non-Europeans.

CagardiB
CagardiB
1 month ago
Reply to  Lin

Why is it a bad thing to be grouped with the rest of the world? Why the need for exclusion? Are you from turkey, cuz I’m pretty sure people on the asian side casted their votes despite not being european.

Fatima
Fatima
2 months ago

Not happy because I was hoping to see the 2022 voting violators punished. Instead, we’ve stepped back to 2008 when a disproportionate number of Eastern European countries qualified. More pleased with the rest of the world vote, that will be interesting.

Midnight Gold
Midnight Gold
1 month ago
Reply to  Fatima

Portugal’s entry this year is light years ahead of anything we have ever sent but our WRS still got more televote because we had the friendly points from Moldova and the diaspora points from Italy and Spain. The EBU are insane by encouraging such embarrassing results.

Hebbuzz
Hebbuzz
2 months ago

Surprized so many think its a positive change. I can imagine if you only view it from your own point of few (read I want to have to as much as possible influence on the outcome) you are in favour of televote only. From the artistic and competition point of view it is a less fair system. And totally not explainable you have two different voting concepts in semi and final. The rule change to me solves a non-existing problem (fraud was identified in the current system), even creates more. Now countries can still fraud in the final and come… Read more »

Craigee_mac
Craigee_mac
2 months ago

Sweden and Malta get a lot of jury love. Will be interesting to see how this all shakes out.

Leo
Leo
2 months ago
Reply to  Craigee_mac

This Is The Night (for some reason – in a panel which also had I’m a joker in its top 10 in that heat) and Coming Home (and Voices if you believe the twitter thread which says ROW votes would allow The Wrong Place to re enter the top 10 at its expense) are the only ones from these countries that qualified due to jury overtaking televote. The Swedish entries, leaving aside this unproven theoretical, and Malta in 2013, 2016, 2019 and 2021 would have qualified anyway

Daniel
Daniel
2 months ago
Reply to  Leo

One must not forget that with the new voting system, countries that cannot/something happened with the telephone voting must be replaced by the country’s backup jury.
That, for example, San Marino’s score should be decided by their jury, not that the country’s score is decided by some other countries’ telephone voting.
As it was before 2016.

Leo
Leo
2 months ago
Reply to  Daniel

San Marino actually support the new voting rules because it may allow them to have an online only vote and be decoupled from Italy (they don’t usually have a public vote as their phone vote is part of Italy’s) and therefore give their own votes.

Daniel
Daniel
2 months ago
Reply to  Craigee_mac

Various people may have deliberately neglected to vote for Sweden in the telephone vote because they expected the jury to vote for Sweden.
Tactic votes may have had an impact in previous Eurovisions.

Chess
Chess
1 month ago
Reply to  Craigee_mac

Don’t think it will be an issue for Sweden
Had this been the arrangement throughout the years (i.e. including 2010-2022), Sweden would be having 100% qualification records – including Anna Bergendahl

Mr X
Mr X
1 month ago
Reply to  Craigee_mac

Please don´t forget to mention Australia….

Leo
Leo
2 months ago

Whilst I always think Sekret >>> Ela, even though both are bilingual and traditional inspired songs, I wonder if there are prejudices at play (eg wanting Albania to send a reggaeton song since Fier born Foureira was runner up, Elvjana losing in 2020, when imagining her v Athena, Hurricane, Samanta, Stefania etc would be awesome, the reggaeton scene with acts like Enca and the Istrefis). I also liked the fact that Sekret’s revamp was produced by Diztortion, who produced Fester Skank and Wobble by Lethal Bizzle though everything else with him sounded the same. Also, I defend Boys Do Cry.… Read more »

Colin
Colin
2 months ago

That’s why I was suggesting the other day. Semis should have 1-17 or 1-16 voting systems, with songs that are ranked 11th and below still getting some points. As the voting isn’t announced publically in the semis, there’s no need to keep the archaic ”12 points”. Nobody ever hears them out loud. Sure, keep it in the finals, for tradition sake and to make it more interesting. But they are obsolete in the semis. The advantage would also be to minimize the wretched neighboring problem I’ve just been complaining about.

Mattias
Mattias
1 month ago
Reply to  Colin

Agreed! Austria would have qualified instead of Albania with this system. Same goes for Netherlands instead of Poland in 2018. Poland will qualify every year now with the current voting system.

Colin
Colin
2 months ago

The biggest issue with Eurovision voting is the one that cannot be solved easily. I’m talking about ”neighborvision” and diaspora voting. Juries will often take in account the ”checklist” of countries that have to be included in their top 10 to keep it ”neighborly” and then fill the rest with the songs they genuinely find the best. A lot of the televoters won’t even do that, as they have only a few votes to give. Many will straight-up vote only for their neighbors or their own country. It’s the biggest setback of this show, always has been, and always will… Read more »

Colin
Colin
2 months ago
Reply to  Colin

You are absolutely right. In the jury vote, there’s always a risk of petty “anti-voting” based on betting odds. That’s one of the advantages of televoting.

Colin
Colin
2 months ago
Reply to  Colin

And yes, while Amnesia is still in my top 10 of 2021, I can objectively say there were several better performances in that semi. I’d even say that purely performance-wise, it’s easy to find 10 of them above Amnesia’s. I’d still like it if they squeezed through, but it was such a tough semi to begin with that I understand why they did not. I would understand a single juror still giving it 12 points if it’s their favorite entry, and they don’t think that the performance that *that bad* to bring it down (and in all honesty, it wasn’t… Read more »

Colin
Colin
2 months ago
Reply to  Colin

Just to be clear – It was an okay vocal performance from Roxen, especially considering all the movement, but Kateryna, Geike, Manizha, Tix, and Vaidotas nailed it even more with songs of the roughly same range in quality.

Dawid
Dawid
1 month ago
Reply to  Colin

Song is amazing, live performance was bottom 3 worthy

Stephanie
Stephanie
2 months ago

Can’t say I’m happy with this…

Leo
Leo
2 months ago

Disadvantages: *low impact easy listening songs (Austro 2017, Switzerland 2022) can suffer *other songs for older viewers can suffer too like Albania in 2018, which was the highest placing entry ever that qualified due to jury (though I read that with ROW for 2018, it would have re-overtaken Greece like it did with Jury) *too much getting away with poor performances (Greece 2018, Albania 2022) * can compiling all votes as one “country” work? Advantages: *allows more diversity (semi final 1 last year had 8 songs that were jazz, easy listening, power ballad or folk ballad in its top 11… Read more »

Eurovision fan
Eurovision fan
2 months ago

We saw many quality songs screwed up because of jury, and many generic radiofriendly songs being given most of jury points, so the absence of jury doesn’t really mean screwing up quality, whoever wants to win still must satisfy both.

Midnight Gold
Midnight Gold
2 months ago

Juries are supposed to punish entries as tasteless and trashy as Sekret but the EBU is now letting the patients run the asylum…

Fast Food Music Lover
Fast Food Music Lover
2 months ago

I love the decision. Who will get pass the semifinals aren’t gonna be very surprising since most fans can probably make educated guesses prior to the show but I’m sure the final ranking will still be very exciting.

Leafar
Leafar
2 months ago

For me the main problem in the contest is not who votes it’s how the vote is counted. Every country only vote for their Top 10 which doesn’t make any sense, it means we never truly know the real scoreboard. Imagine a song being 11th – 12th in every countries but still getting 0 points bc that’s how the system works like make it make sense ?????

Fast Food Music Lover
Fast Food Music Lover
2 months ago
Reply to  Leafar

I think this should stay because as weird as this sounds countries should have the chance to delude themselves thinking they aren’t exactly placed last if their acts are poorly received

Jonas
Jonas
2 months ago

I think the whole “rest of world” vote might just be a trial to see how it goes, with the aim of bringing that app based voting in for everyone. Telephone voting might be on the way out.

Denis
Denis
2 months ago

I said enough of this “decision forward” and I am not going to talk more about it because I can’t be bothered..
Instead I can only hope EBU reads the mostly negative response the decision got on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube and actually listens to fans for once and decides it was a bad move to make and that 2024 will be business as usual..
But they did not listen to fans before taking this decision so I hope for nothing;(

Jo.
Jo.
2 months ago

running order plays a key role for the qualifiers 6-10, and that’s under the producers’ control. I predict EXPONENTIAL DRAMA in 2023…

Jo.
Jo.
2 months ago

in my opinion this will backfire real bad

Jonas
Jonas
2 months ago

I’d still like to know how it’s the rest of the world if the rest of the world can’t watch.

Elizabeth
Elizabeth
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonas

A lot of countries broadcast the show without participating. Australia applied to join on the back of how long they had been invested in the show without ever participating. Several countries that never participated had scandals about things they didn’t air. China sensoring tatoos and a homoerotic dance number in 2017, or several muslim majority countries cutting the feed when Israel won in the 90’s. There are rules about who can broadcast the show, but none of them require participation.

Jonas
Jonas
2 months ago
Reply to  Elizabeth

Australia hadn’t been invested too long, since about 2008. Before then it was just a BBC repeat. Not many people watched, and still not many watch today. Anyway, I was just trying to say that the contest should be watchable on YouTube for everybody all around the world, or else it’s not the “rest of world” at all.

BadWoolfGirl
BadWoolfGirl
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonas

Lucky you. I can’t watch a commentary free Eurovision because it’s Geo blocked in America. I have to either pay up a peacock prescription to watch or watch eurovision on an iPlayer that’s playable in America.

Stephanie
1 month ago
Reply to  BadWoolfGirl

We had that same problem in Canada from 2016-2018. In 2019, although the YouTube geoblock was still up we got our first taste of televised ESC thanks to Omni Television (albeit on a 6-hour delay) and then in 2021 we got the semifinals on TV live with the final on a 21-hour delay. The geoblock here was lifted at the same time, so for the first time since 2015 I got to see the contest on YouTube without worry. Hopefully the block will be lifted for the States soon

BadWoolfGirl
BadWoolfGirl
1 month ago
Reply to  Stephanie

I think the block should’ve been lifted when peacocks started putting Eurovision on the service (well, they originally had the 2021 contest shows, but those are gone. Only 2022 remains, for now.).

Jonas
Jonas
2 months ago

What Cornald Maas said isn’t really true. It’s not really fair to say Waylon would be the only one not to qualify, when I doubt that Jeangu would have if he had needed to.

Jonas
Jonas
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonas

Also, Brooke came eleventh in the 2022 televote and fake computer point vote, not the televote. If San Marino actually had a televote, maybe she would have gone through over Belgium… we’ll never know.

Leo
Leo
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonas

I read a twitter thread mentioning which songs would have qualified with a rest of world vote. Brooke was too far behind Jeremie (11 points) as was, but Lum!x would have overtaken Iceland

Polegend Godnova
2 months ago

let me add that the jury defenders in the tweets in this article are making ZERO points – since when do they vote for “quality”? they get baited super easily by the most basic turds like switzerland and az€rbaijan this year. like, three sets of ~professionals~ legit give the song with “it hurts so fast when love goes bad” their 12 points in the final. yet, objectively quality songs like serbia and lithuania’s were paid dust simply because they weren’t faux-deep piano ballads. it’s time to accept that the voting public isn’t a bunch of idiots and that we (because… Read more »

Alex
Alex
2 months ago

To be fair, both Lumix and Brooke were very close with televote.
And they would have qualified with televote if it was count by avarage ranking like 2013.

Alex
Alex
2 months ago
Reply to  Alex

With Lumix in particular, got televoting points from more countries (low scores tho) than Ronela, who would have qualified thanks to having Greece, Italy and Switzerland in the same SF.

Polegend Godnova
2 months ago

yeah ronela needs to stop acting like 28 of her 46 televote points weren’t the result of diaspora vote. no italian that i know of enjoyed that trainwreck, yet we (read: a portion of the 1M+ albanian diaspora living here and voting for their country no matter what) gave them 8 points. this year’s SF1 was an outlier with ukraine snatching all the points though, usually 46 televote points won’t get you into the public’s top 10.

Polegend Godnova
2 months ago

absolutely nothing will change. the public will get to choose what they’ll want to see again in the final instead of humiliating countries only the jury wanted with 0 televote points, and the international vote equals to 1 (ONE) country with minimal effect on the final result. and even then it’s fair to give all viewers some decisional power. people whining about these minor changes need to touch grass.

Jonas
Jonas
2 months ago

Small changes can be important. The whole jury result in the 2019 final was decided by just one set of computer points, read backwards. If that had been from 1956 to 1999 the whole night would have been destroyed by crowning the wrong winner.

Denis
Denis
2 months ago

But that would lead to less diversity since the public now tells juries what to vote for. Leading to only choosing between bops, dance songs, ethno songs and funny songs because that still is waht people considers ESC to be. Songs that get zero or few televotes does absolutley not mean they have no value or should not be in final. Look at Hooverphonic 2021, an absolute gem of a song that would have been lost because people found it boring. Even if it quality-wise was better than half of the songs that made it through. I fear quality songs… Read more »

Ugnius
Ugnius
1 month ago
Reply to  Denis

Hooverphonic would have qualified instead of Tusse, had the Rest Of The World votes been applied. And yeah, that would have been incredibly iconic