Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 10 July 2014

Brits chiefs 'sorry' for mix-up

John Newman's Love Me Again video was shortlisted for an award due to the promo's popularity on YouTube

Bungling Brit Awards organisers have apologised to one of the nominees at last week's ceremony after four million TV viewers were shown the wrong video during a high-profile public vote.

John Newman was one of five acts shortlisted for the best video category, which in a first for the ceremony featured a live "social media" vote to determine the winner.

But they managed to repeatedly show an entirely different video when they prompted viewers of the ITV awards bash to vote on Twitter.

John had been in the running for his Love Me Again video, earning a place due to the promo's popularity on YouTube - but they actually broadcast the promo for his single Cheating.

It missed out to One Direction 's Best Song Ever, long considered to be a shoo-in for the prize as a result of their strong following on Twitter.

In addition to UK viewers who saw the wrong Newman video, it was also broadcast internationally for the first time by being streamed on YouTube in a bid to showcase the Brit Awards to a global audience.

Also up for the award at the event seen by an average audience of 4.6 million viewers were acts such as Naughty Boy, Calvin Harris and Ellie Goulding.

Category-winners One Direction were the frontrunners from the moment the best video shortlist was announced earlier this month - they had almost three times as many followers on Twitter as the other four nominees combined.

In a joint statement, the production company Brits TV and broadcaster ITV said: " Very short clips of the videos nominated in this category were played as part of a package during the live show.

"In the package, the voiceover referred to John Newman and graphics correctly referred to his video for Love Me Again, but regrettably a six-second clip of a different John Newman video was shown.

"The correct video in full was available to see via www.brits.co.uk, Twitter and all other official Brits social channels, and the Brits web address was read out during the show. Brits organisers have apologised to John Newman."

Some critics had sniped that the award had been invented in order to ensure the attendance of the boy band. They also won the "global success" award for the second year running, based on their international record sales rather than voting which determines the other winners at the event.

Around two million messages were sent on Twitter about the best video vote, which was announced within a few hours of Wednesday's ceremony, although it is not clear how many voted for particular artists.

Two years ago the broadcast suffered controversy when host James Corden cut off Adele just moments after winning the best album title for her release 21, as a result of the show overrunning.

This year's event also prompted complaints over swearing and innuendo from Corden, who was hosting the event for a final time.

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