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Voting in Eurovision: shared tastes or cultural epidemic?

Research output: Contribution to Journal/MagazineJournal articlepeer-review

<mark>Journal publication date</mark>2007
<mark>Journal</mark>Empirical Text and Culture Research
Volume 3
Number of pages12
Pages (from-to)72-83
Publication StatusPublished
<mark>Original language</mark>English


Apparent vote-exchange ("logrolling") in the Eurovision Song Contest has been variously interpreted as a manifestation of political attitudes within Europe, a reflection of regional tastes in pop music, or a social (memetic) epidemic. This paper provides data supporting the third of these three options, also demonstrating that the cultural contagion has now nearly reached saturation. As well as logrolling, ethnic diasporas and the "semi-final effect" are also shown to influence the result of the contest. Reform of the voting system to produce a contest which better rewards musical excellence, without suppressing the mass participation element, is therefore a complex problem.