“Baby It’s Cold Outside” may be getting the cold shoulder from some listeners, but the uptick in song sales and streaming show many people are still enjoying the holiday classic.
Sales and streaming of several versions of the Christmas song saw an increase in recent days amid controversy over its lyrics, Billboard reported. Several radio stations, including WDOK Christmas 102.1 in Ohio and KOIT in California, announced they were pulling the tune from its air after some listeners said the song contained troubling lyrics that may send a wrong message about consent.
Scrapping the song from the radio sparked a nationwide debate, but also an increase in sales.
Billboard reported that three versions of “Baby It’s Cold Outside” — Dean Martin’s 1959, Idina Menzel and Michael Buble’s 2014, and Lion Redbone and Zooey Deschanel’s 2003 covers — made large gains on its Holiday Digital Song Sales chart.
As for streaming, Martin’s 1959 version is up 54 percent to 8.2 million streams in the U.S. as of the week ending on Dec. 6. Menzel and Buble’s duet gained 54 percent in streaming, while Brett Eldredge and Meghan Trainor’s 2016 cover also saw a 36 percent increase.
The Christmas song was written by Frank Loesser in 1944 and won an Oscar for “Best Original Song” in the 1949 film “Neptune’s Daughter,” Martin’s daughter Deana Martin told Fox News. Several versions of the song have been made since.
But in late November, WDOK Christmas 102.1 announced it was pulling the song from its music rotation after receiving a call from a listener saying the holiday classic may be inappropriate in the #MeToo era.
“It wasn't really our decision," WDOK host Desiray told FOX8. "It's the decision of our listeners."
Pulling the song also sparked a major backlash, leading to some stations, such as KOIT, to reinstate the tune on its holiday playlist lineup.
“After hearing from thousands of Bay Area listeners via polling, phone calls, emails and social media, KOIT concluded that the vast majority consider the song to be a valuable part of their holiday tradition, and they still want to hear it on the radio,” the station said in a statement.
Fox News' Stephanie Nolasco contributed to this report.