The 2011 BET Awards are quickly approaching, and this past week, the nominees were revealed on BET’s 106 & Park. Despite the excitement of one of the most highly anticipated award shows of the year, this year’s nominations created a lot of drama, especially in the Best Female Hip Hop category. The nominees of this category were Nicki Minaj, Lola Monroe, Cymphonique and Diamond; with rapper Trina nowhere in the mix.
Trina later took to Twitter to express her anger towards not being nominated, tweeting “F*ck BET!” while Nicki Minaj and Diamond shouted Trina out on their Twitter pages, showing their concern and disappointment with Trina not being nominated in the category with them.
Trina, Nicki and Diamond weren’t the only ones confused about the female Hip Hop nominees. It seemed that everyone took to Twitter to express their frustration resulting with BET executive producer Stephen Hill to speak out. Stephen spoke to BET.com about the nominations and explained why Trina was not in the category, hopefully mending any ill feelings towards the network and the Miami rapper.
BET.com: How were the nominees chosen for this year’s BET Awards?
Stephen Hill: Like every time, there’s a collection of music industry folks, bloggers, music writers and, most importantly, a collection of fans that were gleaned from BET.com. We call it the Voting Academy. We had fans, music writers, bloggers and music industry folks.
BET.com: Why wasn’t Trina nominated in the Female Hip Hop category?
Stephen Hill: Okay, that was because Trina didn’t submit a video that was in during the eligibility period. Let me back up. To be eligible, here’s what you have to have: a video that’s submitted and then first played on BET…between April 1 of one year and March 30 of the next year. So for this eligibility period it would be April 1 of 2010 to March 30 of 2011. She did not release a video to us in that time. “Million Dollar Girl” came in March. I think it was March 12 or so of 2010. And so she was in last year’s nominees for that. While she was featured in Lola Monroe’s video, the rules are you have to release a video of your own. You have to be the primary artist on it. You can’t be just the feature artist and be eligible. So that’s why Lola Monroe was eligible but Trina was not for this year because it came out this year. So I’ve reached out to her camp. I’ve talked to the head of her label. And actually the only reason I might get off this call is because I may be getting a call from Trina while this call is going on.
And I want to be clear: We love Trina, we work with Trina. She performed “Million Dollar Girl” on Rip the Runway in February of 2010. So we love Trina. We definitely understand that it’s a misunderstanding. And I’ll tell you now, if I were Trina and I’d released something during the eligibility period and it had not been nominated, I probably would’ve had a little bit of side-eye too. But the truth is she just wasn’t in the eligibility period.
The 2011 BET Awards air live from Los Angeles on June 26, 2011.