The Warmest 100 turns out to be hotter than anyone expected

Update 29 January 2013: With 92 of the 100 songs predicted by Search Factory, it is now clear that something will have to change for cyber polling systems that makes votes transparent. Drewe and Knox even managed to forecast all 10 songs in the Hottest 100 top 10, with five in the correct position. Macklemore and Ryan Lewis’s ‘Thrift Shop’ topped the chart on Saturday, as predicted by the Warmest 100 site.

 

With Triple J’s Hottest 100 ready to roll through the airwaves tomorrow, and the votes being collated post closing last Sunday, one digital marketer has attempted to pull a social Nostradamus by using social mentions to predict the countdown.

Brisbane’s Nick Drewe, who works for online marketing company Search Factory, an SEO and search engine doyen in the Fortitude Valley, along with his friend Tom Knox, have set up a website that is raising the odd eyebrow by capitalising on the rise of new media to infiltrate polls.

The website, The Warmest 100, has been predicting the results of tomorrow’s call based on information being streamed on social media, analysing publicly available data from Facebook and Twitter followers. When a person places their vote in the Hottest 100 poll, they are encouraged to share their choices, making the pubic revealing of voting data a hazard of Triple J’s attempts at further new media engagement and word-of-mouth promotion of the poll.

Collating the data from a sample size of about 35,000 votes, the pair posted it on the site and the order oscillates into what ‘might’ be the correct running list read out on the day.

As Drewe states, “We try to stress that nothing was hacked into. It’s just data collection and nothing was leaked. It’s just  a prediction,” he says.

They have even gone as far as presenting the site in a manner that does not ‘give it away’ immediately and encourages the user to scroll down “pretty far to see number one” – through the use of spoiler alerts like this one:

Spoiler warning

But the ramifications caused by these Brisvegas ‘renegades’ has caused a stir with several bookmakers who ceased taking wagers on the Hottest 100 as to avoid being caught out. Death by social media. Welcome to the world of social share. Information is key.

The Warmest 100 has received 50,000 unique visitors, with Drewe encouraged by the feedback from lovers of social sharing. “People are really interested in the shared data and social media aspect of it… people are putting more and more of themselves online these days,” he says.

Drewe hopes everyone enjoys their Australia Day barbecues and is looking forward to how many of the sites’ predictions “stack up”. He’s quietly confident, though.

“We don’t expect to get everything right, but we expect the list will hold up pretty well,” he adds.