Ariana Grande and Justin Bieber’s collaborative charity single, “Stuck With U,” debuted at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 this week. Tekashi 6ix9ine also had a new single vying for the charts this week, “Gooba,” his first song since being released from prison early. It debuted at #3, and 6ix9ine is not happy about it. He took to his social media accounts to accuse the Billboard charts of cheating. “I want the world to know that Billboard is a lie. You can buy #1s on Billboard,” he said in a video posted on his Instagram.
He goes on to describe a scenario in which Grande and Bieber’s team bought their #1 at the last-minute “with six credit cards.” “Explain how you buy 30,000 [units] with six credit cards,” 6ix9ine said. “Billboard doesn’t want no one to know this. It’s all manipulated, it’s all fabricated…” He shows an Excel document on his cellphone and emphatically repeats “six credit cards” and then launches into a confusing analogy about a red apple.
Grande responded to the accusation that she bought her #1 single in an Instagram post:
i would like to address a few things which i don’t usually do (i don’t give my energy to drama or strange accusations normally but this has gone a little too far)…my fans bought the song. JUSTIN’S fans bought the song. OUR fans bought this song (never more than four copies each, AS THE RULES STATE). they are ride or die motherfuckers and i thank god every day that i have them in my life. not just when they fight for us to win (even when i ask them not to as i did this week) but because they’re some of the greatest people i know. sales count for more than streams. u can not discredit this as hard as u try. to anybody that is displeased with their placement on the chart this week or who is spending their time racking their brain thinking of as many ways as they can to discredit hardworking women (and only the women for some reason…..), i ask u to take a moment to humble yourself. be grateful you’re even here. that people want to listen to u at all. it’s a blessed position to be in. i’ve had a lot of “almost number ones” in my career and i never said a goddamn thing because I FEEL GRATEFUL TO EVEN BE HERE. TO WANT TO BE HEARD AT ALL …. and you should feel that way too. congratulations to all my talented ass peers in the top ten this week. even number 3.
And 6ix9ine posted a response to Grande’s response:
All I’m saying is I worked super hard to make it out of Brooklyn NY. I speak for the millions of kids who aren’t as fortunate as you. The millions who weren’t fortunate to be on T.V.. LIFE is REAL when you’re on welfare LIFE is REAL when you grow up with out a father. You don’t know what that is like. You say for me to be humble …. I don’t think you know what humble is………. YOU ARE VERY TALENTED AND BEAUTIFUL GOD BLESS YOU. But you will NEVER UNDERSTAND MY PAIN
Bieber chimed in too, saying Tekashi is “counting his global streams and this is a domestic chart.”
Grande and Bieber’s “Stuck With U” debuted at the top of the charts with 108,000 downloads/physical sales — the highest number since Taylor Swift’s “ME!” last year. Many of those sales came from bundles on artist websites of cassette, CD, and vinyl singles that came packaged with a digital download code. A few hours before the Billboard eligibility window closed, Amazon Music launched a promotion in which the service would donate $5 for every download of “Stuck With U” to the charity it is supporting.
“Gooba” entered the chart at #3, though it was #1 on the Streaming Songs chart with 55.3 million streams. Doja Cat and Nicki Minaj’s “Say So” remix was at #2 on the Hot 100, after reaching #1 last week.
— Ariana Grande (@ArianaGrande) May 18, 2020
UPDATE: Billboard published an article detailing their methodology for this week’s chart results.