That’s why it won’t ever win the Eurovision Song Contest.
100 million Europeans watched agog last night at the annual festival of ketch, awful music and strange dance moves held in Helsinki this year.
For those of you outside the continent, the Eurovision Song Contest has been staged every year by the European Broadcasting Union since 1956.
Winners are chosen by viewers sending in text messages.
The event was won by Serbia, the very first time it has entered the competition. Poland didn’t even make the final this year. The UK came joint second to last and Ireland came rock bottom.
The Ukraine came second and gained the most votes from Polish voters. The girlfriend and I, plus dog, picked Ukraine – the entry being sung by an ageing drag queen (photo). Well, why not? It’s all very Eurovision.
Serious studies have been done on the contest (probably by ‘cultural studies’ lecturers with nothing better to do) on how people make voting decisions. BBC reports:
Dr Alan Howard, from Reading University's school of human sciences, has surveyed 1,000 fans of the contest on how they would cast their votes.
He says the results undermine the belief voting is influenced by the countries' traditional loyalties.
Only 24% of fans agreed tactical voting was reducing the contest to a farce.
The 12-month online survey received 1,126 responses from fans in 51 countries.
A total of 57% said a good performance on the night would make them vote for an act but only 7% said they would vote tactically.
Thirty-three per cent also said lyrics would have an influence while 16% said the attractivneness of singers might sway them.
Dr Howard said: "For some time now, the Eurovision Song Contest has gained a reputation as a light entertainment show rather than an important competition.
What are they teaching kids at uni these days? ‘…the results undermine the belief voting is influenced by the countries' traditional loyalties..’ Ha, bloody ha.
The winners and losers are not chosen on the merit of their often sparse musical talents. Sorry Dr Howard, but it is all about nationalisms and politics.
The competition has expanded in recent years and now includes many eastern European countries. The viewers of these ex-communist countries all vote for each other, with predictable results. Look at the top ten countries this year:
Serbia, Ukraine, Russia, Bulgaria, Turkey, Belarus, Greece, Armenia, Hungary and Moldova.
The Balkans and eastern Europe are completely dominating the contest now. But it’s always been the same, even before they turned up. Cyprus always votes for Grease and Turkey. Scandinavia always votes Scandinavia. Israel has recently started to vote for Russia, due to the fact, no doubt, of the new Jewish Russian migration there.
Poland always votes for Ukraine.
And so it goes, year after year. Unfortunately, even with the eastern European in-built bias, nobody seems to want to vote for poor old Poland. Does nobody love the Poles?
Poland didn’t even manage to get out of the semi-final, held on Friday this year. The only time Poland did well was the first time it entered the competition in 1994, when Polish diva Edyta Gorniak sung ‘That’s not me’ and came in second – probably as a result of a sympathy vote.
All the western European countries are equally isolated – with nobody voting for France, UK, even Ireland, which used to win the competition nearly every year during the 1990s.
I would do what Italy did years ago – don’t even bother sending in an entry.