Justin Bieber threatened to land at number two on the US charts a year ago with his new single.
For a musician who isn't Canadian pop star Justin Bieber, that might be pretty good.
For Justin Bieber, one of the most successful singers today, that's rather mediocre.
In order to reach the top of the charts, Bieber turned to his fans, the so-called Belieber.
On Instagram, he called on her to loop the single on the streaming provider Spotify, even overnight.
"Let them run while you sleep."
In the end, the single didn't make it to first place, and the music world was talking about something completely different from Bieber's new song: Did the pop star call for cheating?
Or just to exhaust a normal system in the music streaming business?
How vulnerable are streaming services and charts to manipulation?
Music streaming is booming.
Millions of dollars have been sold on platforms like Spotify, Apple Music or Deezer for years, but 2020 was a record year.
In the first quarter of the year, in which a virus seemed to shrink the world of each and every one of us, the number of users of streaming services increased to 400 million.
That is almost 100 million more than in mid-2019. In Germany, the world's fourth largest music market, almost a third more music streams were counted in 2020 than in the previous year.
Never that many before.
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