Turkey: latest in series of withdrawals

Yesterday Turkey became the latest country to withdraw from the 2013 contest, but unlike the other nations, have cited changes in ruling rather than economic motives for backing out.

TRT, the national Turkish broadcaster, announced the introduction of 50/50 jury, televoting deliberation, and Big 5 ruling as reasons for their discontent, citing that the rules made the outcome of the competition unfair. It is also thought that another change in ruling, to allow the host country’s broadcast producer to decide the running order of entries (in order to prevent tracks that sound too similar or are from geographically similar locations to be played consecutively giving advantages or disadvantages to other contestants), also likes amongst Turkey’s reasons for withdrawl.

Turkey’s future participation in the contest has not yet been discussed, but the country has been in the contest since 1975 and has only missed four years so far. After coming in second place in 2010, 2011 was a turbulent year for Turkish entrant Yüksek Sadakat, who was the first ever contestant not to have made it to the final, following view years of Turkey taking advantage of the voting rules and consistently placing in the top ten.

Oft-favoured countries including Portugal, Poland (for the second year running), Slovakia and Bosnia & Herzegovina have already withdrawn from this year’s competition, due to economic constraints.