The MTV Europe Awards are having their leg pulled, as Rick Astley finds himself doing quite nicely in the Best Act Ever category online vote.
How do MTV react? Do they chuckle, admit they've been had and their faith in the wisdom of crowds has been tickled, and move on?
Oh, no. MTV are, with a straight face, attempting to paint this as a genuine result in a scientifically-rigorous poll:
"Rick's fans have obviously decided that he deserves recognition as a pop icon and no doubt they are determined to make sure he wins on the night," said the award show's producer Richard Godfrey.
Yes. That'd be it. Rick's fans, who have - for some reason - kept quiet for all these years are suddenly deciding that he deserves the recognition of an MTV Award. It's in no way connected to Rickrolling, where the unsuspecting are duped into a surprise appearance of Rick Astley online. That that should have been happening this year is just a coincidence.
Nobody believes you, Richard Godfrey. And even you don't believe you, really, do you? If you really thought that the MTV Europe awards audience had a hitherto unprofessed love of Rick Astley, you wouldn't be flying Beyonce in to do the opening number; you'd be asking around on Edge Lane if anyone had phone numbers for the Reynolds Girls. Even Rick Astley knows it's a joke, dammit:
I don't think I'll be buying a train ticket to Liverpool. I think it's a wind-up to be honest.
I never took it too seriously while I was doing it and it's a long time ago now so I don't take this seriously either.
Hey, Astley: you better - those legions of fans are counting on you.