The awards brought to a close the three-day Pollstar Live! conference in San Francisco
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In response to criticism of the perceived whiteness of the 2016 Brits, next year's awards will have an increased proportion of female and ethnic-minority judges
By IQ on 07 Nov 2016
The Brit Awards has announced a major overhaul of its voting system in response to this year’s controversy – dubbed #BritsSoWhite – over the lack of ethnic-minority nominees in any of the major categories.
In the biggest-ever shake-up of the 1,200 members who make up the awards’ voting academy, hundreds of former voters will find their names no longer on the list in a bid to increase the ethnic and gender diversity of the Brits’ judging panel.
The new voting academy, says the British Phonographic Industry (BPI), which pushed for the change, is 52% male and 48% female – compared to 70–30 for the 2016 awards – and 17% “BAME” (black, Asian and minority ethnic); up from 15% in 2016.
“I believe that as a result of these changes the Brits will be better equipped to reflect the diverse nature of Britain and British music”
Ged Doherty, BPI’s chairman, says: “I’m really proud that we’ve taken firm action to refresh the academy to ensure that it keeps up with trends in music and society at large. I believe that as a result of these changes the Brits will be better equipped to reflect the diverse nature of Britain and British music.
“There’s been a long-held myth that Brits winners and nominees are decided by industry executives in a smoke-filled room, but the simple truth is that the awards are voted for each year by a 1,000-plus-strong voting academy made up of experts drawn from all areas of music.”
Adele dominated the 2016 Brit Awards in January, with the most wins in 21 years.
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