Miley Cyrus, in spite of her lead in voter polls, is not Time's Person of the Year: Instead, Pope Francis received the title. On November 27, the "Wrecking Ball" singer led Time's online poll with 28 percent of the votes, ahead of Narendra Modi and Edward Snowden, who had 13 percent of the votes each.
President Obama received the award in 2012, preceded by the ambiguous "Protestor" in 2011. Though Time uses voting polls to gauge the interest of voters, Time editors have the final say. Miley doesn't quite seem to fit in with previous winners, which may be why Pope Francis ultimately received the 2013 title. Still, the "Wrecking Ball" singer has had people talking since her VMAs performance, and she had a hand in adding "twerk" to Oxford Dictionaries Online. Her video for "Wrecking Ball" broke the record for most views in 24 hours, and multiple fan accounts were rallying others to vote for Miley.
Time has had its problems with rigged voting results in recent years. In 2009, notorious online community 4chan pushed its founder Christopher "moot" Poole to number one, and last year, programmers created a software to rig the results in the favor of Korean President Kim Jong-un. The magazine changed its polling platform in an effort to curb these efforts.
The Daily Dot asked a programmer about his opinion of the new polling platform, linking him to the site. The programmer, Gains, cracked the system in an hour's time. "Time and Poptip are aware of the efforts to affect the results of the Person of the Year poll, and have measures in place so that only legitimate votes are being incorporated in the final tally," a Time spokesperson told Mashable. "We're delighted that so many people are having fun with this informal poll and contributing to the conversation [about who should win]." Time only added the Twitter component this year.
The finalists were Edward Snowden, Pope Francis, Miley Cyrus, Amazon's Jeff Bezos, health secretary Kathleen Sebelius, President Obama, gay marriage pioneer and Supreme Court victor Edith Windsor, Iranian president Hassan Rouhani, Syria's Bashar al-Assad and Senator Ted Cruz. The Time reader's poll had Egypt's Gen. Abdul Fattah al-Sisi as their Person of the Year.
"What makes this pope so important is the speed with which he has captured the imaginations of millions who had given up on hoping for the church," Time said. Better luck next year, Miley.
Watch Miley Cyrus's "Wrecking Ball" Performance at the AMAs: