Although the rumors of vote manipulation on Mnet’s ‘Produce X 101’ have continued to swirl, the production team has consistently remained silent.
The final debut group X1 was revealed on Friday with members selected by the votes of the viewers, who are dubbed the national producers. The national producers have been voicing their complaints over the text message votes which are drawing suspicions for vote manipulation. Netizens have noticed that the difference between the number of votes equals 29,978 on five separate instances, between 1st and 2nd place, 3rd and 4th, 6th and 7th, 7th and 8th, and 10th and 11th. They have pointed out this would be a highly unlikely coincidence and has not happened before on any audition program that uses text voting.
The production crew has not released an official statement or responded to the suspicions in any way. But an official from their network Mnet has said, “We know there are suspicions regarding the text voting. So I kept checking the data internally, but there was no problem at all. There’s nothing wrong with the text voting at all, there’s no manipulation.” They went on to say, “I’m surprised that the difference of the vote is repeated many times, but I don’t have anything to say because those are the scores as is. Even if they make an official statement, the suspicions probably won’t go away, so I don’t think they will make an official statement.”
In a press release shortly after the show, Mnet only offered self-praise on ratings and popularity with no comment on the controversy. X1 could be getting off on the wrong foot if these suspicions are not addressed before their debut. Attention is focusing on whether the ‘Produce X 101’ team will prepare for their next season with this blot on their record.