YouTube Is Reportedly 'Reevaluating' After Indian Rapper Badshah Breaks Views Record

In just one day, Badshah raked in 75 million views on his single "Paagal."

Bollywood singer and rapper Badshah

Image via Getty/Shivam Saxena/Hindustan Times

Bollywood singer and rapper Badshah

Say what you want about J. Cole, but he's never lied to us. While ScHoolboy Q is looking for the machines Cole mentioned on his "A Lot" verse, YouTube is reportedly rethinking "the way it judges records" after Indian rapper Badshah set a new one on the platform, Bloomberg reports.

In just one day, Badshah raked in 75 million views on his single "Paagal." According to the Bloomberg, this broke the website's record for the most views in 24 hours. Normally, YouTube praises artists for record-setting feats but they have yet to congratulate Badshah. Although he's a famous star in India, Badshah's "Paagal" beat out global superstar acts like BTS and Taylor Swift. At first, some reportedly suspected that the Sony Music rapper accumulated "fake views" by having server farms and bots play the video. Yet, after taking a closer look, the complex world of YouTube ad space/views was revealed. 

Within 24 hours of posting his video “Paagal” to YouTube, Indian rapper @Its_Badshah set a new viewer record.

So why isn't YouTube talking about it?

Badshah and Sony Music bought ad space where they embedded the music video and/or redirected viewers to it. If the viewer watched the ad-spaced featuring "Paagal" for a certain amount of time before skipping it to their desired video, then "Paagal" gets that view. This helped boost the video's total, but Badshah's not the only artist to do this as many major pop artists have done so also. Instead, Badshah believes that YouTube is choosing not to acknowledge his work.

"We worked hard for this, promoted it worldwide," Badshah said. "I don't want people abroad to see India like it's shown in a film like Slumdog Millionaire (2008). We are at par with the world. And it's our time to shine."

Despite this, YouTube is looking into the way it evaluates records, Bloomberg reports, citing two sources who are "familiar with the company’s thinking." By allowing this cloudy practice of padding views to continue, doubt will be cast on the popularity and quality of these tracks.

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