Norway has been participating in the Eurovision Song Contest since 1960 and only been absent twice since then: in 1970, when they boycotted the contest over disagreements about the voting structure, and in 2002, when they did not qualify.
Norway won the contest in 2009, having previously won twice, in 1985 with Bobbysocks' performance of "La det swinge" (Let It Swing) and in 1995 with Secret Garden's mainly instrumental, Celtic-influenced ethno-piece "Nocturne". Despite these successes, the country also holds the unfortunate distinction of having scored the most "nul points" (zero points) in competition history, namely four times. Norway also holds the record of having finished last in a Eurovision final most often, namely eleven times (most recently in 2012). In 2009, however, the country set itself three more records of which to be far more proud, when it claimed the 2009 title with the most votes in Eurovision history, winning 387 points and having the biggest gap between first and second place. They also held the record for most 12 points earned by a country in one contest, receiving the highest score from sixteen countries, but this was beaten by Sweden in 2012.
NOTE: If a country had won the previous year, they did not have to compete in the semi-finals the following year. In addition from 2004-2007, the top ten countries who were not members of the big four did not have to compete in the semi-finals the following year. If, for example, Germany and France placed inside the top ten, the countries who placed 11th and 12th were advanced to the following year's grand final along with the rest of the top ten countries.
Organisation Générale des Amateurs de l'Eurovision (more commonly known as OGAE) is an international organisation that was founded in 1984 in Savonlinna, Finland by Jari-Pekka Koikkalainen. The organisation consists of a network of 40 Eurovision Song Contest fan clubs across Europe and beyond, and is a non-governmental, non-political, and non-profitable company. In what has become an annual tradition for the OGAE fan clubs, a voting poll was opened allowing members from thirty-nine clubs to vote for their favourite songs of the 2009 contest.