The Billboard Music Award is an honor given by Billboard, a publication and music popularity chart covering the music business. The Billboard Music Awards show had been held annually since 1989 in December until it went dormant in 2007. The awards returned in 2011 and is held annually in May.
Unlike other awards, such as the Grammy Award, which determine nominations as a result of the highest votes received by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, the Billboard Music Awards finalists are based on United States year-end chart performance according to Nielsen data for sales, number of downloads and total airplay. Awards were given for the top album/artist/single in different genres. Since 1992, the awards also give out a Billboard Century Award—the magazine’s highest honor for creative achievement and named for Billboard’s centennial in 1994. The award was renamed the Icon Award in 2011. Janet Jackson has won the most awards with 33 wins.
From 1989 to 2006, the show had the same categories and category names every year. In 2011, for the first time, all of the awards were renamed to “Top [award title]”. The “of the year” portion of each category title no longer exists, and many of the awards have been further renamed. Other awards, including both “crossover” awards (No. 1 Classical Crossover Artist and No. 1 Classical Crossover Album) were discontinued.