We Asked the Official Charts Why U2 Doesn’t Count. Here’s What They Said…

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Image by Cubmundo, licensed under Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-SA 2.0).

18 Responses

  1. GGG

    Your obsession with U2’s giveaway counting on the charts is weird…

    Anyway, I think there’s a distinct difference between your example of a boss buying them and the Apple deal. I 100% agree with you that a boss buying them, whether it’s for 1, 20 or 1000 people, should count as buys. Otherwise, we’d have to discount gift card ‘buys’ and gifts in general. And this makes the Samsung deal room to argue.

    HOWEVER, Apple buying them and giving them away is different because it’s the retailer. As I’ve said before, this is why there is a difference between RIAA shipment measurements and SoundScan sales measurements. And why Billboard has used the latter for years. Anything involving the actual retailer is too misleading.

    • Anonymous

      “I 100% agree with you that a boss buying them, whether it’s for 1, 20 or 1000 people, should count as buys.”

      So it’s cool with you guys if McDonald’s buys 1.9 million copies for its employees?

      • Anonymous

        …and don’t get me wrong, I think it’s great that corporations buy music.

        I just don’t want to see McDonald’s commercials on the charts. Unless they’re pretty damn good, of course. 🙂

        • Paul Resnikoff

          Why does it matter WHO buys them? As long as the charts have arbitrary yardsticks that change according to the whims of the owners of these charts, they will erode into obsolescence.

          • cjhoffmn

            To me – its about how you want to interpret the number. If we want to use the number to indicate how popular or liked or in demand the album was, then ruling out large corporate purchases makes lots of sense, as it will likely be given away to many people who don’t like and don’t care.

            If we just care about the money – then they should be counted.

            I’ve always figured most of these lists as trying to highlight the most popular songs, not the most lucrative…

            No data on this scale with this many screwed up systems will be totally clean, but I like the idea that they are trying to isolate the data down to just bonafide “fan” purchases, as hard to do and messed up as the case might be…

          • Anonymous

            “Why does it matter WHO buys them?”

            Because nobody wants McDonald’s commercials on the charts. Charts reflect what people like — not what big corporations want them to like.

          • Anonymous

            Why does is matter that it’s UNIQUE visits to your sites and not just one company paying for a click farm from one ISP?

      • GGG

        I mean, it’s not like I’d ignore how it was done, but sure. I’d support putting a big asterisk by the number so everyone knows how the numbers were reached, but it’s still bought by someone other than a retailer, and going to an end consumer.

  2. Johnny Bashful

    Free to the consumer?

    Perhaps these people in those lofty positions of authority may not be the right people for the job…

    Anyone that thinks that was free to the consumer has got another thing coming!!!

    hahahahahahah I love it so much, the old british people, who the carts are truly for, like they some epic great esteemed meritocratic custodian of Art and Music, the purity of their motives, oh so fucking pure hahahaha

    It’s a joke right? It’s gotta be a joke!!! When i think of just the brutal world we live in i cant think of anything being real, it has to be a joke, it has to be, cause none of this can actually be real!! An elevated heightened intelligent species like the Human surely would have built up things much much differently and would have conducted itself very differently throughout History if this was anything other then a big joke!!!

    Who cares about the charts anyways?? I check them out occasionally to see what PEERS and other PROFESSIONALS are churning out for their body of work or whatever brief or client they were commisioned for, but that’s about it, they are mostly meaningless in regards to music and especially irrelevant when it comes to what the public deems to be the best music…

    Cause i sure cant get spun on radio! My country has a mandate to play citizens content, but only if i submit to some label and let them have a bunch of cuts and this and that. Me spending a ton of money to send it to their inbox doesnt and wont result in any spins of any worth anywhere, and supposedly i got some tip-top stuff, so we all are very well aware it isnt some just system that is fair and transparent….

    Bah, anyways… Just back from the beach and saw this, now time to smoke a big gagger of a doobie and do very little of anything for the rest of the day… 😉

    – Johnny Bashful

  3. Johnny Bashful

    also, i dont know how it works elsewhere that well, but up here they only check the charts out a few weeks of the year to see who is getting played and where to allocate the money too…

    So if those guys have the most sophicated security measures ever, then how come they cant track and monitor the spins fairly?

    Geez i wonder why, cause what they do is lock everything up so that they can control and own and profit… A fair and equitable system isnt to their advantage so why would they bother?

    Surely they have some lame excuse why they are unable to yet of course they can fucking lock the thing down like the tightes prison at any fucking cost imageinable…


    Life is pretty darn good overall, not like we carrying swords around marching to a certain death prodded to chop others heads off, so that is something to be thankful for….

    Overall its just mind boggling when you look at some of the things out there that the feeble small minded human was actually somehow able to come up with and invent and discover and create, some of the advancements are truly really incredible…

    – Johnny Bashful

  4. Anonymous

    whos that in the picture by the way? is it Nina? shes pretty cute anyways, even with the scrunchy face… 😉

    • GGG

      Jesus dude, go hire a hooker and get laid already. We don’t need your creepiness every other post.

      • Anonymous


        no chance on that happening, i refuse to pay for sex… Forgive me for trying to make girls feel good, wasnt aware it comes across as creepiness, that is not what i want, hopefully my music doesnt do the same, if so that would be super tragic… 🙁

        Never the less that being said, this will be last post here, i don’t promise it, but i will commit to not posting here again.

        My apologies for everything, sorry to be such a problem.

        Best of luck to everyone and may all your dreams and wishes come true.


        • Anonymous

          He didn’t ask you to leave for good, just to take it down a notch…

  5. Name2

    DMN: where they believe so strongly in paying creators that they exclusively use Creative Commons images.

  6. JeffC

    This IS bordering on some weird obsession.
    If you don’t like how their chart function then ignore them. Get over it already.
    Paul: “As long as the charts have arbitrary yardsticks that change according to the whims of the owners of these charts, they will erode into obsolescence.”
    These “arbitrary yardsticks” have been in place for years.
    I repeat: If you don’t like how their chart function then ignore them. Make your own. Make your own rules.
    Please note: the iTunes chart you republish does not feature U2 in the top 100.
    So what metric does their chart use?

  7. asdf

    paul, now you’re just being obnoxiously obtuse – bordering on trolling. we all know why the U2 album doesn’t count on the charts. charts count consumer purchases, not corporate funded freebies. this rule, logically, seems to apply to all charts worldwide. wtf is there not to understand?

  8. wallow-T

    Are music charts for delivering useful information, for measuring out popularity from compiled diffuse data? Or are they more like sports championships, where winning is the only thing that matters?

    Putting the new U2 album into the charts based on the Apple promotion might make U2 feel like it won something, but it doesn’t deliver any actionable information to anyone — it doesn’t answer the questions of whether the album will have “legs” among the public, or if the public even likes it.

    I thought these arguments had been settled when Prince was bundling CDs with newspapers.