If you're not acquainted with the moderate sensation that is 5 Seconds of Summer because you were born some years before 1995, they're something like a friendlier version of My Chemical Romance, or a grittier version of Something Corporate. They rose to fame among the younger demographics in the last couple of years after being welcomed onto One Direction's Midnight Memories tour as an opening act. They're not as cute as One Direction, but have more "legit" rock sensibilities, their own label, and a great first single for their second album called "She's Kinda Hot."
If you're not acquainted with the MTV "Song of the Summer" Video Music Award, that's because they just invented it yesterday. Twelve songs were nominated for the new award, and voting is being conducted using designated hashtags that can be deployed via Twitter or Instagram up to 12 times per day, per voter.
5 Seconds of Summer's "She's Kinda Hot" is soundly in the lead, despite the fact that its video is the only one nominated that has a mere seven-digit view count on YouTube (excepting Fetty Wap's "My Way," which does not actually even have a music video). It is also the only nominated song that doesn't appear on Spotify's Top 50 list for daily streams, one of only two nominated songs that doesn't appear on Apple Music's Top 100 list, and has the lowest peak Billboard ranking of all 12 nominated songs.
It's quite obviously not the song of the summer
I'm not sure how to prove this other than anecdotally, but it's not getting any radio play at all, it's not the song you hear bumping out of car windows in Brooklyn, and it's not likely to be on any of your beach bonfire playlists (unless you're me). In other words, it's quite obviously not the song of the summer by any metric or stretch of the imagination. And yet, despite the fact that Taylor Swift herself tweeted out an endorsement for "Good for You" by Selena Gomez, it was #ShesKindaHotVMA that I saw in my trending bar all day long yesterday. The teens have come together, and they're strategizing.
This kind of coordinated effort via social media is the type of thing that only teens (girls, mostly) have the free time and give-a-shit nature to pull off, so it makes sense that we're seeing their voice come through most loudly in this particular contest of affection. If voting for all major awards was handled this way, we would have a virtual utopia of entertainment being respected solely for its service to young women and their reciprocal love for it. Actually, I dream of the day we live in that world. I really do.
Here's all the relevant data on the nominees (as collected at 11:00 AM ET on August 19th), but you can follow the live vote tally on the MTV website.