In response to 6ix9ine's impassioned allegations of chart manipulation following the No. 1 debut of Justin Bieber and Ariana Grande's new charity-supporting "Stuck With U" single, Billboard has shared a detailed breakdown reminding the world how they arrive at their tabulations each week.
"Stuck With U," of course, was up against 6ix9ine's own "GOOBA" for the top spot on the most recent iteration of the Billboard Hot 100. As has been well-documented, including in this equally handy breakdown of 6ix9ine's cheating claims, the Infamous subject's comeback single ultimately landed at No. 3 thanks in part to getting bested in terms of radio play and downloads.
"In an effort towards transparency regarding the Hot 100's chart rules and tabulation process—and the calculations that go into the determinations of its final rankings—Billboard wanted to clear some things up regarding this week's chart, and the stats accumulated by the two singles that marked its highest debuts," the Billboard staff said in the response piece published late Thursday.
Billboard points out that 6ix9ine's claim that not all of his streams were properly counted toward the week's total isn't accurate, as streams included in chart calculations must meet a number of requirements ranging from being U.S.-based to hitting the minimum play length. Additionally, the 30 million streams that 6ix9ine himself said was counted by Billboard "matches the included chart total for all video plays," a number that’s more than double any single-week video stream total for any song so far in 2020.
The piece also addresses the fact that chart forecasts like the one referenced in an IG clip from 6ix9ine are neither created nor provided by Billboard. Instead, they are modeled by those with their own access to data from various sources regarding radio play and streaming, among other factors.
As expected, Billboard also responded to 6ix9ine's "six credit cards" allegation—which has already been blasted by Bieber as "a lie"—by noting the utilization of sales audits:
Billboard and Nielsen Music/MRC Data conducts audits on all sales reported with access to purchase-level detail, and works with data partners to recognize excessive bulk purchases and remove those units from the final sales total. All titles this week, as in every week, were put under the same scrutiny.
Additionally, Billboard says its team has reached out to retailer and reporter of director-to-consumer sales Fame House/Bravado for further comment about the "Stuck With U" sales data.
Elsewhere, Billboard addresses 6ix9ine's claims that the company declined to disclose data info, the use of signed singles or albums as an accepted form of sales, and more. Read the full response piece here.