Apple iTunes is playing dirty with the Christmas Number One

Finally, a battle for the Christmas number one, Rage Against the Machine vs. X Factor’s latest robot (AKA: Joe McEldry). The best part is, so far Rage Against the Machine seem to be winning, just look at these download charts:


Apple iTunes:


Hang on, Rage doesn’t seem to feature in that chart at all, maybe they’ll be somewhere in the genre specific charts:


Now that is odd, you’d think that Rage Against the Machine, the best selling track on the other major digital music stores, would at least feature somewhere in the iTunes charts. I suppose people just aren’t buying it from iTunes. Except they are. Rage Against the Machine is actually the second best selling song on iTunes, and I have proof:

iTunes for iPhone & iPod Touch


All these screen shots were taken on the morning of Tuesday, the 15th December, so while the main iTunes store was saying Rage Against the Machine didn’t even qualify for the top 100 downloads, the mobile iTunes store was saying the track was number 2. There’s only one conclusion I can draw from this, someone at Sony, SyCo or ITV have lined Apple’s pockets in order to have the Rage Against the Machine track removed from the iTunes best sellers list, only they forgot to remove it from the iTunes mobile shop as well, nice going.

You might think I’d be pissed off about this, but actually I think it’s pure awesome. Not only did they managed to mess up a bribe (idiots), but this means Simon Cowell and co are definitely scared that the Rage track will beat them to the number one spot. It is so on.

Update – Ockham’s Razor

As much I love a good conspiracy theory about bribes and fixed charts, I should come clean. About an hour after I posted this entry I realised the truth, the reason the Rage track doesn’t appear on the iTunes website is simply because it has explicit lyrics. It’s the same reason the 3OH!3 track also seems to have been removed from the website – Ockham’s Razor, the simplest solution is usually correct (and less fun). I thought about removing this post as soon as I realised, but it was just too much fun to watch people get sucked in.

I would have let it go on longer too, but some smart fucker figured it out and posted a comment explaining, so I thought I’d best put an end to all this.

Ah, that was fun.

- MB

Posted in: Music by Matt Bearman on 15th December 2009 at 11:34 am
Tags: , , ,

15 Responses to “Apple iTunes is playing dirty with the Christmas Number One” - (Leave a comment)

  1. Send it to the press!

    Comment by Bob on 15th December 2009 at 11:40 am

  2. Yeah. I second that Bob. Up with RAGE!

    Comment by Lewis on 15th December 2009 at 1:26 pm

  3. sony wouldnt have done the bribe
    they own Rage agaisnt the machine

    Comment by the bob man on 15th December 2009 at 1:26 pm

  4. I wrote to iTunes asking them why they removed it from their chart listings, it was number 1 yesterday there, now not in the top 100?! Not a chance that can happen.

    I am a regular user of itunes, anywhere between 50 and 100 tracks in a month, if they play stupid games like this I won’t be supporting them anymore!


    Comment by Gavin on 15th December 2009 at 1:27 pm

  5. I saw this too, but on the itunes store (in the itunes application on PC), killing in the name is 2nd too. So I came to the conclusion that the top 100 on their website is not up to date. Its highly unlikely that there have been bribes etc.

    Comment by Dan on 15th December 2009 at 1:29 pm

  6. Yeah bribery in this day and age? That’s repulsive and just a measure of how society is these days –

    We have said several times on the Facebook page that we have no grievance with wee Joe (the winner) he’s not a bad karaoke singer – but apart from that he has no real talent ie song writing, musical instrument skills.

    This is us showing that we a sick of Cowell’s monopoly over xmas!!! I always thought monopolies were illegal, but i suppose it depends on how much money you have/give in order to manipulate the system eh?

    Come on rage and don’t forget to give to Shelter :)

    Comment by Mark on 15th December 2009 at 1:41 pm

  7. If it wasn’t up to date The Climb wouldn’t be listed as #1, so it does seem rather suspicious.

    Comment by Gavin on 15th December 2009 at 2:00 pm


    if you look at the screenshot I just posted, it’s there and it’s live.

    So this is all bull-hicky!

    Comment by Mike Fethers on 15th December 2009 at 2:16 pm

  9. The song only seems to be missing on the website, it shows up on the mobile store and iTunes application

    Comment by Matt Bearman on 15th December 2009 at 5:14 pm

  10. Please don’t jump to conclusions guys its there now! I very much doubt simon cowell would be that pathetic to pay apple to do this plus i cant see apple agreeing their lawyers are full to the brim with cases to make them do anything this stupid. Plus if anything this campaign makes him richer due to x factor fans buying MORE copies of this all be it crap single to win the race. So while I am totally for this campaign and have bought many copies I still imagine simon cowell is wiping his ass with fists of money this xmas!

    Comment by Simon on 15th December 2009 at 6:45 pm

  11. It appears on my Itunes.

    Neil Ridley who’s currently running the ‘oh so rebellious’ RAGE FACTOR campaign site, was Simon Cowell’s personal A&R guy when he worked for SonyBMG, he’s currently head of A&R for Sony .

    Comment by James on 15th December 2009 at 11:34 pm

  12. it’s not listed in the top 100:

    which has to be a lie. was #1 yesterday.

    Comment by Gavin on 15th December 2009 at 11:52 pm

  13. Have you noticed how the songs marked as explicit do not come up on the itunes website? The 3OH!3 song isn’t in their chart either, but is fourth on your iphone screenshot. I’d suggest that itunes have a policy on their website that they do not put the ‘explicit’ marked songs on their charts to avoid problems with young children accessing them or something, and that it has nothing to do with your unfounded accusation that Sony or Simon Cowell as bribed Apple.

    Comment by Oliver on 16th December 2009 at 4:23 pm

  14. You got it, and ruined all my fun. Ah well, had to end at some point.

    Comment by Matt Bearman on 16th December 2009 at 5:31 pm

  15. Censorship sucks – so that doesn’t really make it any better! Good to see RATM at the top of the other charts though.

    What the hell happened to the Facebook group for the campaign?

    Comment by Yurasuka on 17th December 2009 at 12:32 am

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