CALL IT DEMOCRACY
How do you determine the merit or value of songwriting? Is success measured in purely commercial terms? For example, if a song is downloaded by a million people. Maybe. Or can such worth be judged by experts or critics? For instance, if a song is reviewed favourably. Likely.
Or is it a bit of both?
Of course, there is a third method of determination - voting. Ever since American Idol, this seems to be the only way to perceive the quality of "creative product".
Assuming that the votes are not "rigged" in some way (perish the thought!), there could be a variety of reasons why a person votes in a certain way.
Take the current songwriting competition for the Youth Olympic Games, do the voters choose on the basis of merit (they believe that the song is "good"), bias (the songwriter is a friend or relative) or popularity (the songwriter is famous). Who really knows?
Well, with regards to the YOG song, I understand that votes make up 15% of the "score" (how do you even score a song?) with the remainder being decided by celebrity judges. And the obvious question being, what qualifies these judges to decide? And so on...
It's a dilemma, for sure. And this is not limited to songwriting competitions. There is also a voting contest going on now to decide who will open for Paramore. Caveat being that Paramore will have final approval. So why have the vote at all? It just may be possible that Paramore may like the band with the lowest votes... see what I mean?
... and please do not draw analogies with political contests in any of my comments ...