Post Malone
via Instagram / Post Malone

Post Malone topped the Billboard Hot 100 this week, dethroning Cardi B with his hit single, “Rockstar”.

While there’s no denying it’s a hit, his label is being accused of using some deceptive tactics to help it reach No. 1.

According to The FADER, Post’s label Republic Records used a “weird YouTube hack” that supposedly propelled the single to the top of the charts.

The clip in question (below) plays the track’s chorus on a loop, without the verses, and comes out to 3 minutes and 38 seconds, the same length of the full song. To date, the video has racked up more than 46 million views.

https://youtu.be/_209r9TMB4M

Why is this notable? Well, Billboard has acknowledged that the Youtube plays counted towards the single’s chart success. “U.S. streams for that clip do contribute to our songs charts, the same way an instrumental track or a remix of a song would count towards the main song’s placement if downloaded or streamed,” the company said in a statement.

The audio clip actually encourages fans to listen to the full song on other streaming platforms, such as Spotify, Apple Music, iTunes, and TIDAL. As a result, the song has been able to record more views/streams than usual… and more money.

For example, YouTube pays $0.0006 per stream, whereas TIDAL pays $0.0110 per stream, and $0.0038 from Spotify.

While Republic Records has yet to issue a statement, Post Malone appeared to respond to the accusations on Twitter. “Whenever you live your dreams everyone wants to try to take it away from you,” he wrote. “F*ck you.”

Post Malone’s “Rockstar” will appear on his upcoming album, Beerbongs & Bentleys.