The BBC has responded to complaints about this year’s Eurovision coverage saying “some aspects of the broadcast…didn’t appeal to everyone.”

Viewer ratings for this year’s competition plunged amid multiple controversies and calls for a boycott.

This year, the contest faced criticism for its inclusion of Israel amid their role in the ongoing Israel-Palestine conflict.

Due to this political neutrality clause, the EBU announced they reserved the right to remove Palestinian flags and symbols, and would go on to censor Irish contestant Bambie Thug for wearing the word ‘ceasefire’ and ‘freedom for Palestine’ as a hidden message on their costume.


Israel’s inclusion prompted boycott calls from the LGBT+ community towards UK entry Olly Alexander, reasoning that the competition was “providing cultural cover and endorsement for the catastrophic violence that Israel has unleashed on Palestinians.”

Over 1,000 Swedish artists called for Israel to be banned this year – including Robyn, Fever Ray, and First Aid Kit – and more than 1,400 Finnish music industry professionals have signed a petition to ban the country from taking part in the contest as well. Over 400 Irish artists also called on Bambie Thug to boycott the contest too.

However, Israel’s broadcaster Kan later issued a statement claiming that the Israeli delegation “faced immense pressure and an unprecedented display of hatred, notably from other delegations and artists, publicly and collectively, solely because of the simple fact that we are Israelis and that we were there,” it said.


“Throughout the journey, the delegation maintained a dignified and respectful approach towards artists and other delegations, striving to foster unity around music while adhering to the competition’s rules, unlike some other delegations,” they added.

Additionally, this year’s competition saw organisers disqualify the Netherlands’ entry Joost Klein just hours before the contest, in which Klein was accused of making verbal threats towards a female member of production crew. In response, Dutch broadcasters said they were “very disappointed” by the decision, calling it “disproportionate”.

The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) later released a statement promising to review all incidents for those who “didn’t respect the spirit of the rules” at the Eurovision Song Contest 2024.


Now, the BBC have issued a statement about their coverage, admitting that they had “received complaints from some people who are unhappy with some aspects of this year’s Eurovision Song Contest.”

The statement continued: “‘The Eurovision Song Contest continues to be one of the most popular entertainment programmes on the BBC, attracting millions of viewers.

“The long running contest is organised by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) in conjunction with that year’s host broadcaster and the other member broadcasters and always features an eclectic range of performances.

“Whilst we feel that this year’s Eurovision remained within general expectations for this annual event, we understand there may be some aspects of the broadcast that didn’t appeal to everyone.”

They concluded that they were “continually listening to our audience” and that they had “shared all feedback” with the BBC teams responsible for the broadcast of Eurovision and with the organisers of the competition.

According to agency Digital.i, this year’s competition was watched by an average of of 7.64million viewers, with a peak of 8.46million. Conversely, last year’s contest, which took place in Liverpool, had a much higher peak of 11million viewers with an average of 9.98million.

This year, Switzerland’s entry Nemo won, becoming the first nonbinary contestant to be crowned the champion with their song ‘The Code’.

Nemo’s victory also marks Switzerland’s first Eurovision win since 1988, when Celine Dion competed with ‘Ne partez pas sans moi’.

In their victory speech, Nemo declared: “I hope this contest can live up to its promise and continue to stand for peace and dignity for every person in this world.”

However, in a press conference later, they later hit out at the “unbelievable double standard” of the competition, saying it “needs fixing”. When asked about their policy of banning nonbinary flags, Nemo said: “I had to smuggle my flag in because Eurovision said no, but I did it anyway, so I hope some people did that too. But, I mean, come on, this is clearly a double standard.”

They went on to describe the Eurovision experience as “really intense, and not just pleasant all the way”.

“There were a lot of things that didn’t seem like it was all about love and unity. And that made me really sad and at the same time… there was so much love here as well,” they added, dedicating their win to the “people that are daring to be themselves and people that need to be heard and need to be understood.”