The Academy did not like the way the songs were campaigned for last year, specifically one song, Alone Yet Not Alone. They decided to change the rules, or enforce them, to disallow members to contact other members to campaign for their song submission.
The Board of Governors of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has updated regulations for how companies and individuals may market movies and achievements eligible for the 87th Academy Awards® to Academy members. The most significant changes affect the Music category.
Music Branch members may not contact other Music Branch members to promote the nomination of their own song in any way, including via mail, email, telephone or social media. Additionally, Music Branch members may not attend any special live performances of eligible songs unless attached to a screening.
For the complete award campaign regulations, visit oscars.org/regulations.
The Oscars will be held on Sunday, February 22, at the Dolby Theatre® at Hollywood & Highland Center® in Hollywood, and will be televised live by the ABC Television Network. The Oscar presentation also will be televised live in more than 225 countries and territories worldwide.
If you’ll recall last year’s scandal involving Alone Yet Not Alone’s composer Bruce Broughton was a former member of the music branch on the board of governors. He lobbied fellow members via email. The song was chosen for a nomination but then disqualified for violating Academy rules. And the rest is Oscar history. I personally believe that a lot of lobbying goes on. Phone calls, parties, etc. You just can’t leave a paper trail.