credit to http://azulity.tumbl...musictaste-scam
Hello everyone. I know you’ve seen me create and reblog several posts over the past week regarding voting for Toronto as one of the EXO’s North American Tour stops. Your efforts in helping us have made so many of us happy, and we’ve all been positive up until this point as we watched our numbers rise. Thank you so much! We from the Toronto group are so, so thankful.
However, this post is not about that.
Below the cut I will be talking about the obvious scam that the site, MyMusicTaste (known to use a form of crowdfunding to bring K-Pop groups to different cities, even overseas), has pulled on us who have all been competing for a spot in the Top 5 stops for EXO’s North American Tour.
Yesterday on Toronto’s MMT page we received a comment from one of our users. I personally told her to delete the comment so that other cities who frequented our page - namely Vancouver and NYC - would not see in fear of them taking this comment and twisting our words for their benefit, as they were wont to do.
For those of you who are unaware, Tastes are something you can buy and put towards your city’s page. Tastes offer benefits such as access to pre-sale, merchandise, etc. On top of that, the number of Tastes is important because it showcases the number of people who are serious about this concert happening since they are willing to put money towards it.
Tastes cost $10 USD, which is about $13 CAD.
They have monetary value.
Tastes can be recognized on the sidebar of the several cities’ pages because those who bought Tastes have their icon showing with a red border around them. Icons with a blue border have vote, but have not purchased these Tastes. Example (from Atlanta’s page):
Obviously after seeing this comment and sharing it with my friend, Kayla, who is also a participant of this competition/supporter of our Toronto page, the two of us looked into this. Kayla was the one who checked the pages of the other cities - Chicago, NYC, Vancouver, Dallas, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Atlanta, and Toronto - and relayed to me what she found.
What she found was confirmation of the comment above.
There were MANY more of these, around 80-90 on the pages we checked, and I don’t know about you, but I HIGHLY doubt that:
- There are a lot of middle aged Caucasian K-Pop fans out there
- All of them just so happen to have stock image looking headshots of themselves to use as profile images
- All of them choose to have user names that follow [adjective] + [animal] + [number(s)]
You can even see that the first example has a watermark on her face. And below–
–these two users have the SAME profile image and are supporting TWO different cities.
The two cities that had these types of users the most was Vancouver and NYC, whom since the beginning of this competition have paired up to create #VaNYC. This was their way of stating that they would be helping each other in votes (Makes) and Tastes.
All of that is fine and dandy, but what irks me is that the majority of these users were seen on this pair of cities that were known to be working together. Suspicious? I think so.
Not to mention, those of us who were on late the other night were witnesses to the incredible and unsuspected spike in both Tastes and Makes for both cities. If there really was a lag issue like many were saying after the numbers spiked, would we not have seen comments on either page wondering where their purchased Tastes were and why they weren’t counted? It happened a lot on our Toronto page when Tastes were bought but not added to the count. All of that was absent on the others’ pages.
Two other cities were found with them as well, though none with as suspiciously large amount as Vancouver and NYC. The other cities who had these similar users were L.A. and Chicago.
Those who did NOT have these users were Dallas, Atlanta, Toronto, and San Francisco.
Due to these concerns, I as well as some other members of our Toronto group emailed MMT our concerns. Not so much as to boost our own city, but simply - we did NOT want to lose to cheating. If we lost, we wanted it to be because it was fair and square, and that these people honest-to-god worked so hard.
MMT later made a statement on their Twitter that they would look into the issue, that they were aware of these automated Tastes and Makes. They said that this would be taken into consideration before their final choices for the tour stops would be made.
Today, those stops were announced.
A minute before 10 AM (EST) hit, all of the cities seemed to have hit the ‘Green Stage’ - the final stage that basically means that we have succeeded, that the concert was going to become a reality. Many of us who had lost hope were celebrating, and were just waiting for the official tweet from MMT.
This is what we got.
After seeing this, all of us were heartbroken. How could this happen? Did they not take into account the cheating even if they said they would? And how is it that 4/5 of the chosen cities were guilty of this?
Our Toronto page was devastated, but even more upsetting was the fact that our ally, Atlanta, whom we’ve been helping, who has been helping us, and supporting #TorOrLanta, did not get a concert. Why this is so upsetting and messed up is because–
Atlanta was part of the Top 5.
On one hand, we know why this happened. In order to make a North American tour, Canada had to be added, and thus Vancouver got a spot. But on the other hand, Why did Chicago get up there? When they were struggling at the bottom, and Atlanta for the duration of the competition had held their own at second place?
Clearly, there is something fishy behind this.
With all of the proof gathered - we even had/have links of the numerous profiles at the ready, as shown on the Google doc linked above - MMT still pulled this on us. And here’s the kicker.
Tour dates were announced maybe ten minutes later.
How is it that the cities that were “just chosen” and the tour dates were readily announced within minutes of one another?
Our guess is that it was predetermined. That perhaps these boosts and fake users are the doing of MMT themselves. After all, some users of this bunch were seen to have ‘Made’ concerts in the past for cities that did indeed receive them.
There are obviously MANY things to be angry about. And one of the most important things besides the deception of MMT that has yet to be addressed is the purchased Tastes.
Atlanta bought around $4000 worth of Tastes. Toronto also bought around $1690 Tastes. People bought for themselves, for friends, received money from family to purchase one, and even sold valuables to be able to afford a Taste.
Will we be seeing this money again? No. Absolutely not.
Not only were we cheated out of concerts - especially Atlanta who had EVERYTHING in the bag - but we were scammed of our MONEY.
And, to go back to the mention of the ‘Green Stage’ - each ‘stage’ is a set of tiers that need to be met. The stage prior to the final Green Stage was the Yellow Stage, and Atlanta obviously had that covered, as did Toronto as of last night. But upon looking at NYC’s page, we found:
(taken from a comment on Atlanta’s page)
Some tiers were not completed. And yet they get a concert? Outrageous.
EXO-Ls from our cities as well as the others who didn’t get concerts are heartbroken. Some even saying such saddening things such as:
We cannot BELIEVE the injustice dealt upon us. How one city who had been in the Top 5 couldn’t get a concert, and how ours who would be covering all of the fans on the entire East side of a whole country couldn’t get one either is beyond me.
All we can do now is spread awareness and hope that no other group or company depend on MMT again, and that fans are not caught up in a mess like this in the future.
As someone on the Atlanta page stated, #STAYWOKE.