The Billboard Music Awards opted for a digital-only format Sunday instead of a live gala presentation, but it definitely didn’t resonate with fans.
Fans slammed the organizers for what they called a “really embarrassing” presentation, and took to social media to trash the format of the show. The 2023 Billboard Music Awards abandoned their traditional physical venue and live audience in favor of a series of clips showcasing performances and artist speeches. Making matters worse, they relied strictly on digital streaming – then experienced technical issues.
bbmas please dear god have a live show next year this is so awful
— elaina (@neomufelix) November 20, 2023
Fans didn’t hold back when it came to sharing their discontent online.
Critics wrote comments such as, “bbmas please dear god have a live show next year this is so awful,” and “This is REALLY embarrassing for the@BBMAsand@billboard,” as seen on Twitter.
we wanted a livestream not whatever this is
— ryder 💙💭 (@youhadmeforamin) November 20, 2023
Others wrote, “watching, but stunned at how bad it all is. #bbmasuck,” and lashed out at organizers for their technical issues.
“CAN YOU GUYS FIX THE FREAKING LINK?? everyone is replying saying we can’t watch because the link is broken and you guys are just ignoring and tweeting show updates as if anyone can actually see what’s going on,” a critic wrote to Twitter.
Event organizers described the new platform as being a “reimagined award show concept” that was intended to “entertain fans with music and exclusive content,” according to a press release noted by HuffPost.
Maddy Mesevage senior Vice President of Dick Clark Productions attempted to explain the bizarre approach they took to this year’s ceremony.
CAN YOU GUYS FIX THE FREAKING LINK?? everyone is replying saying we can’t watch because the link is broken and you guys are just ignoring and tweeting show updates as if anyone can actually see what’s going on.
— -ˏˋ amity ⁷₄ ˊˎ- (@needyynasa) November 20, 2023
“When conceptualizing a newly reimagined BBMAs, it was important for us to put the artists and fans first, leaning into the existing viewing habits of today’s audience to create an awards show that speaks to a new generation,” Mesevage said, according to HuffPost.
“Similar to how music consumption has shifted, with 85% of music consumed digitally, how fans engage with their favorite artists and view content has also shifted,” Mesevage said.(RELATED: Award Shows Are Dead)
Please never do awards like this again if there’s nowhere to watch
— 𝘙𝘢𝘨𝘥𝘰𝘭𝘭 (樂) (@ragdolluwu) November 20, 2023
“So this year, the BBMAs is meeting fans everywhere they are, and everywhere they already consume music and content.”
— Just me (@jeff_swanitz) May 19, 2014
Judging by the comments online, fans were left frustrated and unimpressed. We’re curious to see if any of them will even tune in to see what the 2024 ceremony presentation will be like.