After 6ix9ine made headlines on Monday by doubling down on his claim that Ariana Grande and Justin Bieber "bought" their way to a No. 1 debut on Billboard's Hot 100 chart with "Stuck with U," Billboard decided to break down their rules "in the interest of transparency."
Addressing 6ix9ine's take that not all of the streams for his comeback single, "GOOBA," were counted on his way to the No. 3 spot, Billboard confirmed that public streaming numbers on platforms like Spotify and YouTube "do not reflect the volume included" in their chart calculations.
Rather, each platform gives audited data to Billboard and Nielsen Music/MRC Data and often removes "streams that do not meet long-standing charting parameters, such as U.S.-based-only plays, minimum play length, excessive plays and lack of user verification."
"GOOBA" was credited with 55.3 million combined audio and video U.S. streams.
Meanwhile, YouTube views represent "global plays," and the 30 million streams that 6ix9ine called out in his Monday Instagram rant, embedded below, represent total valid video plays. Billboard also noted that this count is "more than double any single-week video stream total for any song so far this year."
Scooter Braun, Bieber and Grande's longtime manager, claimed there was an investigation into a video last week that had “6 times the amount of paid bot activity than the normal video.” He was likely referencing "GOOBA."
Additionally, Billboard responded to 6ix9ine's questioning of why “60,000 units" of "Stuck with U" were submitted "out of nowhere” on Thursday, May 14, the last day of the tracking week. They said this jump was "likely" caused by purchases of the limited signed copies of "Stuck with U" released online.
These CDs, which benefitted the First Responders Children's Foundation, are "an accepted form of sales available to any artist." Grande and Bieber tallied 108,000 units sold last week while 6ix9ine earned 24,000.
As for 6ix9ine's repeated assertion that only six credit cards were used to buy 30,000 units of "Stuck with U," Billboard ensured readers that they collaborate with data partners "to recognize excessive bulk purchases and remove those units from the final sales total."
While 6ix9ine tied his peak Billboard position at No. 3, Grande and Bieber joined Drake and Mariah Carey as the only artists ever with three songs to debut at No. 1.
Yet, 6ix9ine will soon try to take over the lead position again as he recently announced that he'll be dropping a new single and video this Friday afternoon, May 25.