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In a Christmas Rage Against the X-Factor

by polrid | December 18, 2009December 18, 2009 7:48 am PDT

xfactorrageIs Social Networking powerful enough to fight the might of Simon Cowell’s X-Factor? We’re about to find out! Twitter and Facebook have been on fire in the last few days as the exciting climax to an online campaign fast approaches. Its aim: to get a track by rock legends Rage Against The Machine (RATM) to the UK’s number one spot in the Christmas charts instead of the latest winner of the TV ‘talent’ show, Joe McElderry.

The purpose of the campaign is simple enough: “Fed up of Simon Cowell’s latest karaoke act being Christmas No.1? Purchase Rage Against The Machine’s ‘Killing In The Name’ on Christmas Week as a protest.” It’s a move to put a halt to what is fast becoming a music tradition in the UK, where the winner of Cowell’s X-Factor TV marathon takes the top spot in the UK charts over Christmas. Rage Against The Machine For Christmas is calling on music fans to give some music credibility back to the UK’s charts and raise money for charity at the same time.

It’s a two-pronged attack, the campaign’s powerhouses are Twitter and Facebook. Music-lovers Jon and Tracey Morter are the leaders of this year’s resistance struggle and it’s not the first time they’ve tried to encourage a revolt against Simon Cowell’s “predictable monotonous garbage”. Last year a failed attempt was made to get Jeff Buckley’s version of Hallelujah to the number one spot instead of show winner Alexandra Burke’s version.

High profile reactions to the campaign

ragebg1Simon Cowell has not taken the news of rebellion well, “I think the campaign’s aimed directly at me, it’s stupid” but despite his apparent popularity with the British public, support from Twitter and Facebook networkers has been steadily growing and at the time of writing the latest figures show RATM taking a bit of a lead (306115 tracks downloaded to 297192). Celebrity support from the likes of Stephen Fry, Bill Bailey, Paul McCartney and even RATM themselves (guitarist Tom Morello recently promising to donate any profits made to the UK’s Youth Music charity) has almost guaranteed increasing headlines being given over to the cause.

There’s only a couple of days left before the final result is known – the chart closes at 23:59 on the 19th December – and the organizers are busy calling for a frenzied final push for victory. UK readers can help by downloading the 1992 track from Amazon UK, 7Digital, Play.com, HMV or iTunes (links appear on the campaign homepage). But whatever the result, homeless charity Shelter is a winner, around £50,000 ($81,000) has already been raised by campaign supporters.

If you’re not a fan of Rage Against The Machine, would you consider downloading one of their songs or even gifting a one to friends or family just to keep Cowell’s “predictable monotonous garbage” from taking the number one chart spot?


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